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Ratten Sings the Blues

Brook “Boris” Kilpatrick reporting from Etihad Stadium for AFANA

A glorious sunny afternoon welcomed spectators to Etihad Stadium for the final appearance of both Carlton and Saint Kilda for the 2012 AFL season. The Carlton faithful turned out to see Brett Ratten’s last day at the helm of the Blues, their loss to the lowly Gold Coast Suns in Round 22 putting an end to Carlton’s Finals hopes and with it, any hope of Ratten retaining his job with the impatient Carlton hierarchy. For first year St Kilda coach Scott Watters, the game would give him an opportunity to look forward to 2013 after disappointingly missing the Finals, despite some positive signs from a team that finally blooded some new talent to support a solid core of veterans.

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Suns Turn Up Heat In Boilover

Jamie Kloeden reporting for AFANA from Australia

Carlton left Melbourne for Metricon Stadium on the Gold Coast with everything to play for against the lowly Gold Coast Suns. After being Premiership favorites early in the season, things went wrong mid-season to the point where Brett Ratten was hanging on by a thread to his position as coach. A huge win against the Bombers last week made Finals a very realistic goal and a strong showing against the Suns would have the Blues riding a wave of momentum into the major round if things went according to plan.

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Round 15 Milestones

by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago

Kevin Sheedy took part in his 900th career match as a player and coach. This is a first in League history. Sheedy played 251 games with Richmond and coached Essendon in 635 games. This was his 14th game as coach at GWS.

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Round 14 Milestones

Peter (241 games) and Shaun (210) Burgoyne became the 12th pair of brothers in League history to reach a combined total of 450 games. The leaders are: Madden (710 games - Simon 378, Justin 332), Nankervis (578 - Ian 325, Bruce 253), Coventry (533 - Syd 227, Gordon 306), Richardson (518 - Wayne 277, Max 241), Wakelin (513 - Darryl 252, Shane 261), Rocca (499 - Saverio 257, Anthony 242), Matthews (487 - Leigh 332, Kelvin 155), Cornes (483 - Chad 248, Kane 235), Hocking (473 - Stephen199, Garry 274), Collier (470 - Harry 253, Albert 217), Voss (459 - Michael 289, Brett 170), and the Burgoynes.

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Eagles Top Blues

Rick Browner reporting for AFANA from Patersons Stadium, Perth

With sixteen consecutive winning games at Patersons Stadium, the West Coast Eagles were favorites to win against the Carlton Blues. This was the 600th game for West Coast since entering the competition in 1987. Carlton has been on a slide going down as they struggle to win with key players out injured. The Eagles were coming off a bye and were well rested ahead of the game played in wet and wintry conditions.

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Blues Kreuze As Tigers Tire

In the highly anticipated Round 1 match-up between self-proclaimed Top Four team Carlton and up and coming Richmond, it was the Blues who had all the answers as they steamed to a 44 point win in front of a massive crowd at the MCG. Carlton was too classy for a determined Richmond outfit, with young ruckman Matthew Kreuzer dominating the clearances to give his midfielders first use of the footy. While Richmond’s new recruit Ivan Maric battled hard all night, he was simply not able to compete with the athleticism of Kreuzer around the ground.

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Blues Carve Up Dockers

Carlton effectively ended Fremantle’s Finals’ hopes in a comprehensive demolition at Patersons Stadium in Round 21. Fremantle had won the last 12 of 14 encounters with Carlton and got off to a great start winning the ball from the first bounce down. Aaron Sandilands was back after injury and tapped the ball down for a Matthew Pavlich clearance. Pavlich chased up his own kick to goal within the first 30 seconds of the game.

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Blues Blitz Tame Tigers

Brook Kilpatrick reporting for AFANA from Australia

After going down to the vastly improved West Coast Eagles last week, Brett Ratten’s Carlton players were keen to re-establish themselves as a genuine Top 4 team on the big stage of the MCG. Richmond on the other hand was in need of a solid showing after playing whipping boy to the Blues in their last seven encounters.

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Carlton Blue As Bombers Force Draw

Carlton and Essendon games open up old wounds with a traditional rivalry going back decades. The intensity of feeling was well summed up by long time Carlton fanatic Barb, who wore a button that stated simply "I Hate Essendon".

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Best And Fairest For Judd

One week after winning his second Brownlow Medal ahead of Geelong's Gary Ablett and Collingwood's Dane Swan, Chris Judd has won his third consecutive John Nicholls Medal as Carlton's best and fairest. Judd, who was presented with the medal by Nicholls, has won the medal every year since he joined the club.

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