Since 2003 the AFL have marketed one round of the season by matching up traditional and recent rivals to help promote the game and increase publicity and crowds at the games. Some of the rivalries have lasted decades fuelled by suburb proximity and past grand final clashes.
Arguably the greatest and longest standing rivalry in the competition is between Collingwood and Carlton built by the rivalry between white and blue collar suburbs. The rivalry is intensified by the teams meeting in six memorable Grand Finals.
Another traditional rivalry is between Hawthorn and Essendon. After meeting in many Grand Finals’ during the 1980, the two teams have hated each other sparking a number of on-field brawls.
Some recent rivals have the ‘Western Derby’ between Fremantle and West Coast as well as the ‘Showdown’ between Adelaide and Port Adelaide.
A true test of a team’s ability is to win after losing a marquee player to injury. Despite losing their first game of the season last week to Port Adelaide the Saints have bounced back to knock of the Western Bulldogs in a scrappy, low-scoring game at Etihad Stadium on Friday night.
Both teams applied relentless pressure in the first half and it set the scene for the game as they played a ‘keepings-off’ type game which saw just three goals in the first term, followed by just two in the second. After the first half struggle the Bulldogs looked to take control of the game in the third term extending…