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AFANA AFL Power Poll Round 17
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By Boris Kilpatrick, special to AFANA from Australia

AFANA AFL Power Poll Round 13
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By Boris Kilpatrick, special to AFANA from Australia

Finally the bye weeks are all done and dusted, and how the footy landscape has changed as we head into the final 10 rounds of the season. In the tightest finals race seen in recent times, there are 12 teams that currently have realistic claims to a finals berth. Here’s how the AFANA Power Poll shapes up as we head into a fascinating stretch run.

1.    Adelaide Crows (Last time - 2)

American Cox Debuts in Anzac Day Win
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Brook “Boris” Kilpatrick Reporting for AFANA

Mason Cox had not heard of Australian Rules Football just two years ago. Today, he debuted for arguably the biggest team in the AFL – Collingwood – in front of more than 85,000 fans on a day that holds huge importance on the Australian and New Zealand calendar: ANZAC Day (the equivalent of Memorial Day).Mason Cox goes for the ball. Photo by Kim Densham for AFANA.

Club Awards
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by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago

Sydney midfielder Luke Parker has won his first Bob Skilton medal as the Swans' best and fairest. Parker polled in all but three games to finish on 758 votes, ahead of Josh Kennedy (709) and Lance Franklin (688). Parker, 21, is the youngest winner since Michael O'Loughlin in 1998. He also won the Paul Kelly Players’ Player Award, which is voted on by the playing group. Parker led the club in 2014 for tackles, averaging six per game, and was among the leaders for the season in disposals, contested possessions and goals. Coach Longmire praised Parker as a great competitor, saying the win - after just 82 games - was a great achievement. “When you look at the players behind him - Kennedy and Franklin - you quickly get an understanding of how good a season he has had, and how highly we think of him as a player. Luke was taken as quite a late draft pick, but he really is testament to where hard work can get you, and we value that really highly."

Late Surge Sinks Pies
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Jamie Kloeden reporting for AFANA from Australia

After two long weeks of matches, Round 18 was finally coming to a close as Collingwood hosted Adelaide in an immensely important Sunday game. Following the Gold Coast Suns' thrashing by crosstown rivals Brisbane, a win for Adelaide would see them enter the Top Eight for the first time this year, leapfrogging both the Suns and their opponents Collingwood. On the flip side, a Collingwood win would have them sitting two games clear of the Crows and a strong chance for Finals' action.

Suns Shine In War of Attrition
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Brook “Boris” Kilpatrick reporting for AFANA

A solid crowd of around 24,000 filtered into a sunny Metricon Stadium in anticipation of an excellent game of football between the up and coming Gold Coast Suns and the visiting Collingwood Magpies. With positions tight for a Top Eight finish, a Gold Coast win would set them up with a real chance to play Finals for the first time in their short history, while Collingwood was looking to consolidate a Top Eight spot and possibly challenge those in the Top Four.

Tough Pies Defeat Eagles
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Rick Browner reporting for AFANA from Australia

An undermanned and battered Collingwood held tough over the West Coast Eagles by eight points at the MCG in a thrilling Round 10 encounter. The Eagles had not beaten Collingwood on this ground since 1995 and were looking to turn the tables and set up their year by stealing a game that many thought they could not win. Collingwood players - down one man by quarter time and another by half time - looked out on their feet at times, and at one point trailed by nearly three goals. To their credit, the Pies stood tall when it counted and recorded the win in a high scoring game.

Pies Outclass Tigers
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Brook “Boris” Kilpatrick reporting for AFANA

A crowd of 62,000 filtered into the Melbourne Cricket Ground for the all-important Round 4 clash between the Collingwood Magpies and the Richmond Tigers. Both teams were desperate for a win after sluggish starts to the season. Richmond had more on the line given they had already dropped two games they were expected to win. Collingwood has had the ascendancy in recent head-to-head battles between these two proud teams, having not lowered its colors to the Tigers since 2007. With Brett Deledio still unavailable for the Tigers due to an achilles injury, the bookmakers had instilled the Magpies as favorites in what was expected to be a spirited contest.

Round 16 Milestones
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by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago

Milestones for Round 16 include:

200 games: Justin Koschitzke (StK) and Luke Ball (COL)
150 games: Colin Sylvia (MELB), Joel Selwood (GEEL) and Nathan Jones (MELB)
100 games: Steele Sidebottom (COLL), Matthew Kreuzer (CARL), Craig Bird (SYD), Trent Cotchin (RICH), Stephen Hill (FREM) and Liam Picken (WB)
50 games: Jordan Roughead (WB), Jeremy Howe (MELB), Levi Greenwood (NM) and Trent McKenzie (GC)
50 club games: Jarrod Harbrow and Jared Brennan (GC)

Hot Pies Tame Tigers
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Brook "Boris" Kilpatrick reporting for AFANA

A massive crowd packed into the MCG to witness the blockbuster between the improving Richmond Tigers and perennial powerhouse Collingwood. Tiger supporters' confidence was high after a 3-0 start and they were excited by the chance to prove their credentials against one of the best teams in the League. The Magpies were keen to put the Black and Gold army back in their place and

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