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Coaching Appointments

by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago

Former West Coast premiership player Don Pyke is the new Adelaide coach. Pyke, 46, played 132 games for the Eagles between 1989 and 1996. He played in the 1992 and 1994 Premierships and won the Eagles' Best and Fairest award in 1993. His career was cut short due to a shoulder injury but he did play for Claremont in the WAFL after his AFL retirement. Pyke began his coaching career at Claremont and was there for two years before becoming an assistant with the Eagles 2001-2004. He then became an assistant with the Crows under Neil Craig 2005-06 before making a move to working in the oil and gas industry and serving as a coaching consultant to Claremont and Fremantle. He returned to West Coast as an assistant in 2014.

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Late Surge Sinks Pies

Jamie Kloeden reporting for AFANA from Australia

After two long weeks of matches, Round 18 was finally coming to a close as Collingwood hosted Adelaide in an immensely important Sunday game. Following the Gold Coast Suns' thrashing by crosstown rivals Brisbane, a win for Adelaide would see them enter the Top Eight for the first time this year, leapfrogging both the Suns and their opponents Collingwood. On the flip side, a Collingwood win would have them sitting two games clear of the Crows and a strong chance for Finals' action.
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Crows Find Form

Jamie Kloeden reporting for AFANA from Adelaide Oval, Australia

Adelaide players have referred to their season thus far as "a roller coaster" with the last five rounds alternating between wins and losses. Players have stated publicly that their aim is to find some consistency and start stringing the wins together or risk playing themselves out of Finals' contention. North Melbourne on the other hand is currently in the Top Eight but is a team still fighting for consistency as players try to live up to big preseason expectations.
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Swans Ground Crows

Jamie Kloeden reporting for AFANA from Adelaide Oval, Australia

As hordes of Adelaide football supporters made their way into the city, the realization was setting in that the Crows were finally going to make Adelaide Oval their home ground. The iconic sporting venue - which is known worldwide as a picturesque cricket venue - has been redeveloped to house over 50,000 fans while still retaining its old school charm, including the manually run scoreboard that was first used back on 3rd November, 1911. Although both Adelaide and Port Adelaide opened the ground last week, it was Port that was the home side on that occasion and a sea of black and teal took over the stands as the Power fans enjoyed their first taste of their new surrounds. Round Three action saw Brenton Sanderson and the Crows with a home fixture and it was their turn to put on a show in front of a sea of red, blue and gold fans.

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Franklin Joins Swans

by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago

In the week after the Grand Final, the free agency period began. The biggest move was Hawk Lance Franklin accepting a nine year deal with Sydney, reportedly worth $10 million. There had been speculation for months as to whether or not Franklin would depart Hawthorn. Initially, GWS was interested in Franklin but backed out. Franklin's manager Liam Pickering said Franklin's decision to move from Victoria was partly due to the relentless hounding he received by the media. Pickering said that when Franklin lost his driver's license in 2012, reporters were camped out in front of his home for several weeks.

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Anywhere Anytime Anyone For Dockers

Rick Browner reporting for AFANA from Perth

Fremantle coach Ross Lyon proved his adage that he and his Dockers will take on Geelong, “Anywhere, anytime,” when his team powered away for a win at Simonds Stadium in their Qualifying Final encounter. Geelong had a 99% win ratio at Simonds going into the game and had every reason to expect another notch in their belts. It was a bruising and often spiteful match that epitomized the standard of play in a Finals series.

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Eagles Steal Win Over Cats

Rick Browner reporting for AFANA from Patersons Stadium, Perth

Much was at stake when the West Coast Eagles took on the visiting Geelong Cats. The winner would still be in contention for a double chance in the Finals, while the loser risked drifting towards elimination from the Top Eight. The Cats were hot from their win last week against definite Premiership favorite in Hawthorn. It was all up for grabs as the ball was bounced.

West Coast got off to a great start with Dean Cox making the most of the ball landing in his hands to slot the opening goal. Fast movement through the middle of the ground had the Eagles’ second on the board when Quinten Lynch scored. The Eagles looked pumped but were soon brought back to earth when Tom Hawkins scored the Cats’ first goal from a free kick.

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Round Eight Milestones

Several weeks ago, the MCG hosted its 2500th football game. At the start of the season, AFL historian Col Hutchinson and his team did some extensive research to estimate the MCG would celebrate another milestone in 2012 as the ground would see its 100 millionth footy fan walk through the turnstiles. At the time, it was determined that the milestone would be reached in the Round Nine game between Richmond and Hawthorn.

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Cool Cats Outlast Tigers

A buoyant Richmond side, fresh off its first victory for 2012, headed to the fortress now known as Simonds Stadium (formerly Kardinia Park) in Geelong to take on the reigning Premiers in one of football’s toughest tests. Geelong is so hard to beat at home that it recently had an unbeaten run at “the Cattery” that extended from 26 August 2007 to 27 August 2011. To further intimidate the visiting Tigers, the home team unveiled its 2011 Premiership Flag prior to the first bounce as the crowd finally took their seats after a power outage had shut them out of the Stadium.

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Dockers Upset Reigning Premiers

Geelong won the 2011 Premiership and despite the loss of some key players to retirement, this is still a formidable side which plays well away. Nevertheless the Cats have had trouble with the Fremantle Dockers. Last year there was one nail-biting finish and the first quarter for 2012 showed that the fans were in for more of the same.

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