|Date: Saturday, July 11th||Result: Win by 20 points|
|Umpires: Dalgleish, Kennedy, McInerney||Crowd: 50,784|
|Goalkickers: B. Fevola 9, B. Fisher, E. Betts, B. Gibbs, M. Murphy, G. Bentley, A. Carrazzo, M Kreuzer 1.|
|Reports: Nil||Injuries: S. Hampson (shoulder & broken nose)||Ladder Position: Seventh|
Game ReviewIn stark contrast to their season opener back in March, the anticipation for the round 15 re-match between the Blues and Tigers was akin to a trip to the dentist. A gloomy and overcast Melbourne Winter sky hovered overhead on game day, rain had fallen during the morning and a strong breeze was swirling around the MCG making conditions extremely difficult in which to play.
The Blues made one forced change, with Adam Hartlett getting the nod for his first game of season 2009, replacing the suspended Mark Austin. A late change saw Joe Anderson come off the emergency list (also for his season opener) to cover for Setanta Ó hAilpín who had been withdrawn suffering from that old favourite “general soreness”.
After skipping out to an early lead in the opening minute, courtesy of a Brad Fisher major, the quarter deteriorated rapidly as a spectacle. The subsequent exchanges were largely based on turn-overs, mistakes and miskicks which had spectators from both sides groaning in displeasure. The breeze seemed to be favouring the Punt Road end, but the Tigers failed to make the most of any advantage taking a solitary point lead into the first break.
Carlton made a better fist of the breeze as midfielders Chris Judd, Andrew Carrazzo and Shaun Grigg started to get on top of their Richmond counterparts. Brendan Fevola went goalless in the first quarter, but responded well with four of the Blues’ six goals for the second term. One of Fevola’s goals, a boundary line snap that dribbled through, capped a beautiful snaking run from the elusive Jeffery Garlett and had the Carlton faithful out of their seats.
Extending their advantage to 31 points during the third quarter Carlton looked to be in control, but it was due largely to Richmond’s inaccuracy in front of goal with eight wasteful behinds and a single major. Though the lead wasn’t due to any great dominance from the Blues, they were reasonably efficient when they went forward, finishing with 4.1 for the quarter.
Brendan Fevola slotted another three goals for the term, one of which will be a definite contender for goal of the season. A shoulder-high bouncing ball from Kade Simpson was careering towards Fevola as he leaned back on opponent Luke McGuane attempting to retain front position in the goal square. At the crucial moment he extended his right boot skyward, hamstring at full-capacity, and toe-poked the ball backwards up and over his (and McGuane’s) head for a miraculous goal. Definitely worth a look if you get the chance.
After Fevola’s eighth early in the last, Richmond started their run and definitely had the Blues on the back foot for much of the quarter. Three unanswered goals reduced the margin to twenty points, before Matthew Kreuzer steadied for the Blues. Another two from the Tigers made the margin 15 points with enough time left, but Jack Riewoldt’s miss from a straight-forward position, ended any hope they had. Late in the quarter Eddie Betts handed Fevola his ninth (a career best) and easiest for the day which he casually lobbed into the top deck of the Southern Stand sealing the win at 20 points and allowing the Blues to retain seventh position on the ladder.
The average age of this Carlton team was 23 years and 46 days, with an average League experience of 67.4 games per player. Brendan Fevola was the oldest, at 28 years and 172 days, and the most experienced with 179 games. Jeffery Garlett was the youngest at 19 years and 342 days, playing in only his eighth senior game. This was only the second time for the season that Carlton's side had more experience and was generally older than our opposition.
With most of Carlton's long-term injured players expected to return to the Northern Bullants sides next week (except for Jarrod Waite) the Blues face a dilemma in that Jeff Garlett could now be forced to return to the Rookie list, and therefore be ineligible to play for the seniors. On his form so far in 2009, he would be a big loss.
|B:||40 Michael Jamison||23 Adam Hartlett||27 Dennis Armfield|
|HB:||9 Chris Johnson||32 Bret Thornton||45 Aaron Joseph|
|C:||4 Bryce Gibbs||5 Chris Judd (c)||3 Marc Murphy|
|HF:||2 Jordan Russell||22 Shaun Hampson||14 Brad Fisher|
|F:||33 Ryan Houlihan||25 Brendan Fevola||19 Eddie Betts|
|Ruck:||8 Matthew Kreuzer||44 Andrew Carrazzo||16 Shaun Grigg|
|Interchange:||6 Kade Simpson||26 Joe Anderson||38 Jeffery Garlett|
|47 Greg Bentley|
|Emg:||13 Chris Yarran, 17 Setanta Ó hAilpín, 28 Cameron Cloke|
- Joe Anderson replaced Setanta Ó hAilpín (general soreness) in the selected side
MilestonesFirst Goal (Carlton): Greg Bentley
Career Best: Brendan Fevola - 9 goals
Interesting Fact: With his 9 goals in the match, Fevola once again lifted his goals per game average above 3 after a few quiet weeks.
Brownlow Votes3. Chris Judd, Carlton
2. Brendan Fevola, Carlton
1. Daniel Jackson, Richmond
Best and Fairest Votes43 Brendan Fevola, 34 Jordan Russell, 26 Eddie Betts, 26 Matthew Kreuzer, 18 Chris Judd, 8 Shaun Hampson, 4 Andrew Carrazzo, 3 Bret Thornton
Round 14 | Round 16