The West Coast Eagles survived a spirited second-half challenge by the Gold Coast Suns, to position themselves for a move into the top eight. After two consecutive thrashings, the Eagles were expected to work back into form against the young Suns; and that is what they did in the first half. The Eagles started slowly, put the Suns to the sword in the second quarter; but then struggled as the Suns fought back in the second half.
Gold Coast Suns
As usual at this time of year, clubs whose seasons are over, begin reviewing their player lists and culling players to prepare for the national draft by opening spots on the roster in a process known as delisting. Some players decide it is time to hang up the boots while others decide they want out of where they are at. So here is the latest as the first part of a multi-part post.
North Melbourne delisted Billy Hartung, Tom Jeffries, Oscar Junker, Gordon Narrier, Daniel Nielson, and Josh Williams. Hartung was thrown a lifeline by the Kangaroos in last year's draft after being delisted by Hawthorn. The midfielder played 63 games for the Hawks 2014-17 and 13 games for Roos, with his solitary year with the club ruined by a torn hamstring in Round 14. After making their debuts in 2017,
As the 2018 season heads towards finals, some players have already started toward the door by announcing their retirements. With just a few weeks left, Melbourne's Harley Balic, Adelaide's Sam Gibson, Gold Coast's Matt Rosa and Fremantle's Lee Spurr have all called time on their careers.
Balic was originally drafted by Fremantle in 2015 but a wrist injury kept kept him sidelined in 2016. He finally debuted in 2017 but played just four games. He took a leave of absence from the club in May and later July 2017, and returned to Melbourne for personal reasons. He then asked to be traded back to Victoria, also for personal reasons. He had struggled with homesickness and feelings of isolation during his time in Perth.
Adelaide midfielder Curly Hampton has been forced to retire due to vertigo. Hampton, 25, also said all the setbacks he has had over the past eight years caused him to lose his passion for playing. When announcing his decision, he went on to say, "The past few weeks have been particularly hard ... At times, it has been difficult to train and play but it has also affected my life away from football ... I am confident of making a full recovery but I feel it is best to do that away from the pressures of the AFL industry. This is a good opportunity to focus on the other priorities in my life ... ". He suffered ankle and shoulder injuries in 2014 and a foot injury in 2016.
By Troy Thompson reporting for AFANA in Melbourne
The conditions would have been a surprise for both teams at Jiangwan Stadium with the temperature around 68°F after being closer to 90°F the previous day. So it was under overcast skies and on a slippery deck, the Gold Coast Suns got things underway in Shanghai when Matt Rosa slotted a goal from the pocket early in the quarter.
Chris Kowald reporting for AFANA from Optus Stadium, Perth.
The West Coast Eagles continued their strong early season form by demolishing the Gold Coast Suns. The Suns have a tough start to the year. Their home ground at the Gold Coast, is being used for the British Commonwealth Games for the first half the season, so they have to stay on the road. With two consecutive games in Perth (Fremantle and then West Coast),
Chris Kowald reporting for AFANA from Optus Stadium, Perth
The Gold Coast Suns traveled to Perth to play a ‘home’ game at Optus Stadium. The Suns had won their first two games, against North Melbourne and Carlton, but found the Dockers a tougher proposition at the new Perth stadium.
by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from ChicagoFormer Port Adelaide and Hawthorn premiership player Stuart Dew has been appointed as the new senior coach of the Gold Coast Suns. Dew, 38, won out over Carlton assistant coach John Barker and Collingwood assistant coach Scott Burns. He, like Barker, has completed his Level Four coaching course and won strong reviews throughout the AFL program which was designed to help assistants advance to senior positions. Dew was first interviewed formally by the Suns in mid-September, along with Adam Kingsley (St Kilda), Jade Rawlings (Melbourne) and former Western Bulldogs coach Brendan McCartney. He, Barker and Burns made it to the final interview stage.
by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago
Just days after the Suns were defeated by Melbourne in Round 20. the club announced that Coach Rodney Eade's contract would not be extended. Eade was told by the board on the Monday following the Suns' loss. The board voted unanimously not to retain Eade who decided not to see out the year. Assistant coach Dean Solomon will take the reins for the final games.
The Fremantle Dockers used superior fitness and the open spaces of Domain Stadium to defeat the weakened Gold Coast Suns. The Suns came into the game with a long injury list and were forced to play four players with less than ten games' experience.