Round ten saw the top four teams on the AFANA AFL Power Poll all notch victories during the Sir Douglas Nicholls Indigenous round to tighten their grip atop the rankings. The top three didn’t have it all their own way however, as Collingwood, Geelong and the West Coast Eagles were all pushed to the wire their opponents in Sydney, Gold Coast and Adelaide respectively - the Eagles particularly impressive as they fought back from more than five goals down away from home against the Crows. For the Greater Western Sydney Giants, it was another story as they completely dominated Melbourne at the MCG, running out 26-point winners in a score line that flattered the Demons.
The Brisbane Lions can consider themselves a tad unlucky as they failed to hold off a fast finishing Fremantle Dockers in Perth, going down by a solitary point care of Michael Walters “poster” after the siren. In a strange twist of fate, the Lions were victorious by the same slim margin just a week earlier against the Crows in Brisbane.
Richmond survived a late scare to retain its dominant record over Essendon in the annual “Dreamtime at the G” match, Hawthorn continued its run of following a loss with a win as it took care of Port Adelaide in frigid Launceston and North Melbourne farewelled departing coach Brad Scott with a win over the Western Bulldogs at Marvel Stadium.
Finally, Carlton fans found no respite as their charges could not find a way to defeat a resilient Saint Kilda at Marvel Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
As we head into round eleven, the AFANA AFL Power Poll looks like this….
1. Collingwood Magpies (Last Week - 1)
A tough test against the Swans saw the Magpies once again come out on top, Collingwood’s 7th win in a row. Setting the pace despite significant injuries.
2. Geelong Cats (2)
The Cats were tested on the road by the Suns, but the class of this group continues to shine. Six wins in a row.
3. West Coast Eagles (3)
Looked gone as they trailed Adelaide by 28 points at half time. To come back and win in one of the hardest road trips in footy says a lot about the quality of the Eagles.
4. Greater Western Sydney Giants (4)
The Giants have struggled in their MCG appearances in the past, but there were no such issues evident as they marched to a 57 point three-quarter time lead over Melbourne before cruising home. The real deal.
5. Richmond Tigers (6)
The Tiger smalls reveled in the wet conditions en-route to a ninth consecutive victory over Essendon on Saturday night. Rumors of their demise are overrated.
6. Brisbane Lions (5)
The Lions looked the better team for a good part of their away contest with Fremantle at Optus Oval on Sunday, but failed to hold off the Dockers late surge. Still a contender.
7. Hawthorn Hawks (10)
The Hawks were super-impressive in defeating Port Adelaide by 31 points in Launceston on Saturday. The question is, can they win back to back games for the first time in 2019 when they take on Brisbane next week?
8. Adelaide Crows (7)
The Crows played their best football for the season during the second quarter against the Eagles on Saturday, then conceded a five goal lead to lose in front of their home crowd. Concerning.
9. Fremantle Dockers (12)
The Dockers dug deep to arrest a three game losing streak, coming from behind to steal a one-point win against the Lions at Optus Stadium. Timely.
10. Port Adelaide Power (8)
Port has dropped three out of its last four games, continuing to slide down the AFANA AFL Power Poll. Next week’s game against Saint Kilda in Shanghai looms as crucial to the Power.
11. Western Bulldogs (9)
The topsy-turvy Bulldogs came from behind to lead the Kangaroos in the final quarter on Saturday but could not sustain the momentum, losing to North Melbourne by 25 points. Inconsistent.
12. Essendon Bombers (11)
Essendon staged a gallant final quarter comeback against Richmond despite losing Dylan Shiel and Jake Stringer to injury, but their poor third quarter realistically cost them any chance at victory. At the crossroads.
13. St Kilda Saints (15)
The Saints were never comfortable against a desperate Carlton but showed poise late in the game when the margin was reduced to under a goal. Plenty to like here.
14. North Melbourne Kangaroos (16)
The Kangaroos rallied to give Coach Brad Scott the perfect parting gift in their win over the Bulldogs at Marvel Stadium, and will look to give interim coach Rhyce Shaw the perfect start against the Tigers at the same venue next week.
15. Sydney Swans (14)
Sydney almost pulled off the upset of the round as they led league pacesetter Collingwood by 12 points at three-quarter time on Friday night, before falling to a late Magpie burst. The young Swans are showing improvement.
16. Melbourne Demons (13)
The nightmare season for Simon Goodwin’s men continues as the Demons were made to look second rate for three quarters against a very strong Greater Western Sydney outfit. Desperate times.
17. Gold Coast Suns (17)
The Suns gave league leader Geelong a scare before going down to the Cats by 27 points at Metricon Stadium on Saturday. Stuart Dew’s inexperienced squad is on the right track.
18. Carlton Blues (18)
It was another case of “close but no cigar” as the Blues climbed to within a goal against Saint Kilda on Sunday at Marvel Stadium before losing game number five in a row. With just one win to show for their efforts, the pressure will continue to mount on Coach Brendon Bolton.
Article last changed on Monday, May 27, 2019 - 12:50 PM EDT