Written by AFL Online on 19th Jul 2008
Geelong have shown why they are the best team in the competition by thrashing the second placed Bulldogs in the top of the table clash at Skilled Stadium on Saturday. The Bulldogs managed to stick with the Cats for three quarters before being blown away in the last quarter to lose by 61 points.
The biggest game of the year falls on this day. 1st v 2nd, with only 2 points separating these two top teams. Geelong playing too retain the top spot on the ladder, while the bulldogs battle to reclaim the top spot which they held for a week during the split round. Cat park is really alive today, the crowds going off like you would expect from 70,000 at the G. If the cats were any other team they would have a depleted midfield with both Ablett and Ling missing from the action. The doggies have an almost full strength midfield and you would expect them too win the most important battle of the game. This game will be won in the midfield so i feel that the dogs should be able too take this one out.
My tip: Doggies by 14
The first term saw Milburn poll up a phenominal 19 possessions. The cats broke out too an early lead after kicking the first goal of the game going to Cam Mooney. After 10 minutes of fierce end too end football the doggies finally broke through for their first goal through Johnson. This set the trend for the rest for the term as the sides went goal for goal until the first break where scores were level. Johnson became a small injury concern for the doggies with what appeared too be a rolled ankle. He returned the ground for the second quarter and appears too be moving ok.
Geelong 3.3.21 v 3.3.21 Bulldogs
With quick goals too Hahn and Welsh the doggies looked too make a mini break from the cats. However Gamble pulled one back after a magnificent piece of individual play dodging around 2 doggies before slotting it through from the 50. After a 100m penalty against Chapman for abuse, Farren Ray found himself standing 35 metres out from goal on a 45 degree angle only moments after standing on the paint of his defensive 50. Both sides went goal for goal until the cats were able too string 2 goals together too bring the margain back to 3 points. With the doggies unable too break out of the defensive 50 the 3 point lead suddenly deminished and brought us back too where we were at the start of the game. The final 2 minutes saw a final foray forward for both sides with Aker uncharacteristically missing a snap on goal, and Ottens holding the ball on the paint of the 50 only too kick a behind and square the game up once again leading into the main break.
Geelong 6.11.47 v 7.5.47 Bulldogs
With a ferocious start too the 3rd term, the cats took the chance too get an early lead kicking into the wind. The defensive and forward pressure from both sides has been amazing, and all over the ground the pressure is phenominal. The dogs made a mess of a couple of opportunities kicking with the wind. The skipper Brad Johnson after returning from an ankle scare, missed one he should have gotten. After 10 minutes of immense pressure the cats broke the goal drought with 2 quick scores too Gamble and Johnson respectively. With a magnificant mark in the goal square Gia looked too stem the flow of the cats bringing the game back within 2 kicks. Harry Taylor kicked a magnificent goal after intercepting a harbrow kick, running away and slotting the goal. As Gamble kicked his 3rd of the game and 2nd of the term the cats appeared too be running away with the game, holding a 20 point lead. The doggies were able to nab one back in red time too bring the margain back to 14.
Geelong 11.12.78 v 9.9.63 Bulldogs
The bulldogs, looking too start off well in the final term were blown off the park by the cats. As soon as they came out from teh huddle the cats went bang piling on 8 goals too 1 for the term. The doggies could just not match the cats, who had fantastic goals coming from all over the park. The most notable of the term went too Cam Mooney as the cats showed their brilliance moving the game from defence in the time it took for the game too buffer on my browser. The doggies intensity just dropped off completely and couldn’t keep up with the cats. This game separated the men from the boys. Cats too go back too back.
Geelong 19.17.131 v 10.10.70 Bulldogs.
The Bulldogs put in a very courageous performance, however the boys just could not keep up with the amazing cats side. A credit too the bulldogs too have been level for a half of football with the in form reigning premiers. Too think that the cats can do this without their best tagger and best player out is just scary. Their pressure and intensity is second too none and they will go back too back.
Geelong: Milburn, Mooney, Scarlett, Bartell, Gamble and Johnson
Bulldongs: Eagleton, Giansiracusa, Cooney, Cross
Geelong: Gamble 4, Johnson, Mooney 3, Bartell, Stokes 2, Chapman, Lonergan, Mackie, Ottens, Taylor
Bulldogs: Giansiracusa 3, Eagleton 2, Hahn, Johnson, Lake, Welsh, Ray
Western Bulldogs: Nil
David Wojcinski replaced in Geelong’s selected side by Ryan Gamble
Donlon, Vozzo. S.Ryan
24,801 at Skilled Stadium