With Judd and Hayes in for Carlton and St Kilda respectively, I knew that there would be some midfield battles. Both sides have big KP forward: Fev for the Blues and Roo for the Saints; they will definitely look to target them. A big match for both sides, 8th Vs 9th on the ladder and IMO, whoever wins this match, will cement their position in the Top 8. Carlton win the toss and elect to kick right of your TV screen.
Carlton by 15
A few biffs at the start of the match before the opening siren including Gibbs, Dal Santo, Montagna, Jones and Thornton. At the start of the match St Kilda applied some great midfield and defensive pressure, but just couldn’t get it up to their forward line. Even though they were applying defensive pressure, Carlton kicked the opening few scores including a wonderful snap from Eddie Betts. As they settled into the first qtr, the skills were very sloppy, but Carlton dominated the scoreboard, and St. Kilda – even with sloppy skills – dominated the possession count. Down in defence, St Kilda were doing a BRILLIANT job and Max Hudghton was killing Brendan Fevola. At the end of the first quarter, there were no real tactics used in the match. Bryce Gibbs took a nice one-handed grab sandwiched in between 2 Saints players. Blues lead by 4
At the second quarter, the Saints really started to dominate all over the ground and are now stringing some proper possessions together and are keeping the ball of Carlton easily. This game is becoming easier to watch in terms of skills St Kilda are really dominating in the ruck forces in the 2nd quarter and becoming a really good game for St Kilda. St Kilda are running of their half-back line really well, running up forward and they keep feeding it to Roo and Milne. Nothing much came out of this quarter except Brad Fisher missed an easy goal but made up for it with a dribbler along the ground. Saints lead by 22.
Half Time Report
With sloppy skills in the first quarter, Carlton applied scoreboard pressure but St. Kilda played well around the ground. The second quarter was an improvement. Both teams improved their skills and their accuracy in front of goals (even if Carlton didn’t score much). Late in the second quarter, St. Kilda applied the tactic of running off the half-back line along the wing and into the forward 50 and hitting Nick Reiwoldt, which is why the Saints lead the Blues by 22 points.
In the third quarter St Kilda are showing some prominent signs early and by ½ time, I think the Saints have this game. There was an incident in this quarter where Justin Koschitzke came of limping when landing on his dodgy knee awkwardly. St Kilda are doing very well playing keepings off and this game is dead and buried….for know. Fisher kicked a controversial goal which has got the Saints players thinking, as Brad Fisher kicked the ball, it went up, then came down and landed right in front of the goal post almost/actually touching/touched the padding. The question is: Did the ball hit the padding as it came down or not? Steven Milne is having a great game kicking 4 goals already. This is why the Saints go into the final term leading by 33.
In the last quarter, Eddie Betts is really playing well and has kicked a few BEWTYS and is showing consistent form. Nothing really happened until 8 minutes left, there were only 2 goals kicked until that minute both by the Blues. In the 8th minute was St. Kilda first goal for the quarter but the Blues actually look like coming back. Fevola has kicked a few and are now within 13 points of it!! St. Kilda is definitely tiring. Just as I write them off, the Blues are now within 7 points of the Saints. Koschitzke is playing a good last quarter after coming of limping in the 3rd. Carlton are, once again, letting us down and start to tire. St Kilda definitely have this as Armitage kicks a great dribbling goal and pretty much closes it up. Most of the players are playing for stats but not even Fev can mark a ball **BUUUUUUUUUUHHHHH** The siren sounds and St Kilda have one the game by 32, they get the 4 points and IMO cement there position in the Top 8.
CARLTON – 2.8 5.9 8.12 12.15 – 87
ST. KILDA – 2.4 8.7 14.9 18.11 – 119
CARLTON – Judd, Betts, Gibbs, Fisher, Murphy, Simpson
ST. KILDA – Reiwoldt, Milne, King, S.Fisher, Kosi, Gram, Hayes, Harvey Dal Santo, Hudghton
CARLTON – Fevola, Betts 3, Fisher 2, Gibbs, Browne, Cloke, Waite
ST. KILDA – Milne 5, Reiwoldt 3, Armitage, Koschitzke 2, Gram, Hayes, Jones, Harvey, McQualter, Blake
ST. KILDA: Nil
CARLTON: Jarrad Waite (Carlton) reported by umpire Vozzo for striking Clinton Jones (St Kilda) in the third quarter
Chris Donlon, Michael Vozzo, Mathew James
55,658 at the MCG
Good – Milne, and how good the Saints can keep the ball off Carlton
Bad – Carlton’s poor performance
Ugly – The fact that Carlton sometimes looked like getting into the match but just simply couldn’t keep it up