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Family First For Hawk Star

Rioli Takes a Mark

In June, Hawk star Cyril Rioli was granted indefinite leave by Hawthorn to return to Darwin for family reasons. Just ahead of Round 16, he announced his retirement, effective immediately. He said he had thought about it for the past year and believes he has made the right decision for himself and his family.

In making the announcement, he said,

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The AFANA AFL 2016 Finals Preview

Brook “Boris” Kilpatrick reporting for AFANA

So, who wins it all? In what looks to be the most open finals series for some time, you could mount a solid argument for six teams that could potentially take out the 2016 premiership. Read on for my take on who can win the Aussie rules championship in 2016 and why – and my pick for the two teams that will meet in the biggest AFL match of the year on October 1st.

I’ll start in reverse order of regular season finish, from eighth to top spot.
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Hawks Create History with Third Consecutive Premiership

Janet Linn reporting for AFANA from Australia

Captain Hodge and defender Josh Gibson share the love with the fans after defeating West Coast eagles in the AFL Grand Final. Photo by Kim Densham for AFANA.While it was the hottest Grand Final in history with the mercury hitting 31.3 degrees Celsius (88.3 Fahrenheit), the much anticipated “close contest” between Hawthorn and the West Coast did not bring the heat many anticipated and - in the case of West Coast supporters - hoped for. In the end, this Grand Final was not a replay of “David and Goliath”. The Hawks entered the match favorites and they won nearly everything - the coin toss, all the important game statistics, the Premiership Cup, the Norm Smith Medal and the full-blown respect of the Australian football public. The Hawks' players were never challenged in a master class performance of Aussie Rules football. Alastair Clarkson and his coaching staff cemented a well-earned place in history as the Hawks won the “three-peat”, back to back Premierships in 2013 (defeating Fremantle), 2014 (dominating over Sydney) and now in 2015. No doubt West Coast fans are wondering what happened and how their break out season ended so lamely.
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Hawks Target Threepeat

Rick Browner reporting for AFANA from Domain Stadium, Perth

Hawthorn overcame a sluggish start to stamp their claim for a "threepeat" (three consecutive AFL premierships) when they came from behind to take down a determined West Coast Eagles. West Coast went into the game without in-form ruckman Nic Naitanui who had flown to Fiji after his mother’s death.

Hawks Win
The Eagles got out of the blocks early, scoring the first two goals with the aid of a howling wind. They also hit the post twice and had these shots scored goals their lead may have been unassailable for the Hawks. Hawthorn had their chances too but were sluggish early and the windy conditions at their end played havoc with the skills of even their best forwards. Luke Breust’s goal from deep in the pocket and from a very acute angle showcased the Hawks’ exceptional scoring talent in general play. A third "poster" from the Eagles had them in the lead at the quarter time change but they had not closed the door on the Hawks.
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Tigers Stun Hawks With Intent

Brook “Boris” Kilpatrick reporting for AFANA from Australia

Just days after one of Australia’s largest online betting sites paid out on Hawthorn winning the 2015 Premiership - more than two months before the Grand Final is to be played - the raging favorites have been upset by Richmond in front of a massive MCG crowd.
Burgoyne_handballs
Over 66,000 fans were treated to an intense contest that saw the Tigers put Round 17’s last gasp loss to first placed Fremantle behind them with a stirring win over the reigning Premiers in Hawthorn.
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Hungry Hawks Dismantle Tigers

Brook "Boris" Kilpatrick Reporting for AFANA

After going down to arch-rival Geelong last week, a fired-up Hawthorn met a struggling Richmond outfit at the MCG on Sunday afternoon. The Tigers went into the match with some recent success against the reigning AFL Premiers, having defeated the Hawks in their last two encounters.

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Underdog Swans Claim Premiership Cup

Janet Linn reporting for AFANA from Australia

It was a Grand Final for the ages. A crowd of 99,683 screaming fans was treated to an outstanding contest after a week of talk about the weather potentially spoiling the spectacle. Meteorologists were forecasting bitter cold, strong winds, heavy rain and hail so when the storm clouds held off to provide a windy but otherwise clear afternoon, there were sighs of relief around Australia. Rumors that swirled pre-game about Sydney ruckman Shane Mumford, all-Australian Ted Richards and Hawthorn skipper Luke Hodge under injury clouds also appeared groundless with both teams lining up as expected. In a notable first, goal umpire Chelsea Roffey became the first female and the first Queenslander to officiate at an AFL Grand Final.

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Hawk Bulldog Call Time

by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago

Shortly after Hawthorn defeated Collingwood in the Qualifying Final, midfielder Chance Bateman announced that 2012 would be his last season. Bateman, 31, joined the Hawks in 1999 to become just the second Indigenous player after Willie Rioli in the club's history. Willie, drafted in 1990, never made it to a senior debut. Bateman did debut in 2000 to become the first Indigenous player to play with the Hawks.

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Hot Hawks Team to Beat

Brook “Boris” Kilpatrick reporting for AFANA from Australia

A bumper crowd of over 85,000 flooded into the MCG for the Friday night Qualifying Final between Premiership favorite Hawthorn and last season’s runner up, Collingwood. The Hawks were dealt a blow with the late withdrawal of prime mover Jordan Lewis who suffered a hamstring “twinge” at training on the eve of the big game. Shane Savage came into the Hawthorn side at the expense of Lewis while Collingwood added Ben Sinclair for the omitted Jackson Paine. A heavy rain shower just prior to the commencement of proceedings

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