HIGHLIGHTS FROM ROUND FIVE IN THE AFL
THEY SAID IT: “We thought we were better than this. The brand we wanted to build, we haven’t built. We’ve built something totally different. So it’s back to the drawing board clearly.” – Fremantle coach Ross Lyon after his side slipped to an 0-5 record with a loss to Carlton.
STATS THAT MATTER: 3-11 – Brett Deledio has missed 14 games since the start of the 2014 season and Richmond have won three and lost 11 of them. The 29-year-old was a late withdrawal against Melbourne, with the Tigers’ 33-point defeat plunging their season further into the mire.
MAN OF THE ROUND: Paul Puopolo. The diminutive Hawthorn forward had a night out with five goals against Adelaide on the big stage of Friday night footy. He hasn’t polled a Brownlow Medal vote in the previous five seasons but that will surely change after he sealed victory for the Hawks with his fifth goal in the dying seconds of a pulsating contest.
KEY MOMENT: Much-maligned Carlton forward Liam Jones had his moment in the sun when he iced the Blues’ drought-breaking win over Fremantle at Subiaco. The former Bulldog was unsighted in the first three quarters but kicked two last-quarter goals, including a set shot with a minute to go after intercepting a Lachie Neale howler across goal.
TALKING POINT: Hawthorn won their third thriller in a row by just three points when they held on against Adelaide at the MCG on Friday night. The match ended in some controversy when Hawk Isaac Smith was beset by Crows deep inside forward 50 and wasn’t pinged for holding the ball as the final siren sounded, despite failing to properly dispose of it.
TRIBUNAL WATCH: A quarter-time all-in will lighten some pockets of Melbourne and Richmond players but an ugly forearm to the back of Jack Watts’ head should cost Alex Rance games. Geelong captain Joel Selwood and Port defender Jackson Trengove struck each other with glancing blows in a behind-play incident, but did the incident avoid the cameras? Numerous Port and Geelong players will be fined for a quarter-time melee. North Melbourne’s Ben Cunnington faces a rough conduct charge for dropping his knees into Gold Coast’s Gary Ablett.
KEY INJURIES: N Fyfe (Fre, knee), H Ballantyne (Fre, hamstring), J Riewoldt (Rich, ankle), N Riewoldt (StK, ankle), L Montagna (StK, hamstring), M Suckling (WB, knee, ankle), A Christensen (Bris, concussion), B Jacobs (NM, shoulder). A Saad (GC, groin).
WHAT’S NEXT: After Monday’s Anzac Day match, attention switches to Friday night’s mouth-watering clash between the undefeated Kangaroos and Western Bulldogs. On Saturday, the Giants test themselves against Hawthorn and Adelaide host Fremantle, while strugglers Richmond and Port meet at the MCG.