Adelaide traded its compensation selection for the loss of Nathan Bock to the Gold Coast and a third round selection (#50) for Richmond's Richard Tambling. Tambling debuted for Richmond in 2005 and played 108 games and kicked 61 goals.
Over the last few seasons St Kilda has been a team that you could bank on to win just about every game they played. This season, with the loss of their key goal kicker Nick Riewoldt, they have been shaky, losing three out of eight games. The West Coast Eagles have not fared much better but they were coming off two wins in a row and playing at their home ground in front of 38,000 faithful fans. The bookmakers had the game evenly balanced and there was an air of belief in Perth that the Eagles could knock the Saints down a peg or two.
Hawthorn were heavily criticized last week after their embarrassing and humiliating defeat against the struggling Essendon. They were labeled “soft” by their supporters and their courage when going for the ball was questioned. This week they found themselves playing in Perth without key forward Buddy Franklin, out with injury, in a game that was set to be an even match up. The disconcerting fact for the Hawks was their dismal record at Subiaco Oval where they have won only one game in the last fifteen years. The Eagles were playing for pride in front of their home crowd with a one win and five loss record and expectations were high for them to run all over the hapless Hawks. To atone for their shocking performance in Round Six, the Hawks declared they had come to play and their fans were certainly hoping to see them bring some more backbone to this encounter.
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AFL football fans around the world dread Round 22. If their team does not make the Top Eight, there is no more serious footy action until the following April. Prior to this round, Richmond had appointed Damien Hardwick as their new coach for 2010 and, with a major clean out predicted, Tiger players were playing for their future at the club. In contrast, the Eagles had won three out of their last four games and had their sights set on finishing the season strongly in front of a capacity home crowd.
West Coast Eagles fans have long memories. In 1993 Essendon won a match against the Eagles after the siren and on his triumphant run down the coaches' race, then Bombers' coach Kevin Sheedy showed his elation by waving his jacket helicopter-like over his head. To this day, depending on the outcome of the game, fans continue the tradition.
Janet Linn reporting for AFANA from Subiaco Oval
Dazed Eagles supporters had their Finals hopes seriously undermined after an unexpected defeat by Collingwood at Subiaco Oval in Round 9. West Coast started better than the Magpies and led by two goals at the end of the first quarter. It was downhill from there on in with Collingwood running out very comfortable 22 point winners. Collingwood went into the game as underdogs with talented forwards
Rick Browner reporting for AFANA from Subiaco Oval
At every West Coast Eagles home game a huge seven foot wingspan Wedge-tailed Eagle flies around the stadium as part of the opening entertainment. Things looked grim for the home team when the eagle did one round of the stadium and wanted to come in to land. Tired? No heart? Was this a harbinger of the Eagles versus Melbourne match to come?