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AFANA AFL Power Poll - Round 21

The Eagles are Flying

Our top three on the AFANA AFL Power Poll all came through with wins this week, with Brisbane crushing the Suns, the Eagles defeating the Crows and Richmond too strong in the wet for the improving Carlton.

The Giants took a big hit on Friday night footy, registering a rare loss in Canberra while playing in even rarer conditions – snow! Yes, for the first time in a home and away AFL contest, snow fell at Manuka Oval in Canberra as Hawthorn gave the Giants a football lesson. Geelong took care of the Kangaroos in similar fashion, with Rhyce Shaw’s men managing just a single goal for the entire match.

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Captain Cripps Exposes Crows

Cripps Leads His Troops

A commanding performance by the Carlton Blues’ skipper, Patrick Cripps, has left the Adelaide Crows exposed to attack from other teams, as the Crows struggle to maintain their position in the top eight. The Crows faced their D Day at the MCG, as they attempted to establish a beachhead for a finals campaign. Their attack on the Navy Blues failed and they are now hunkering down on the shoreline waiting to make their next move.

The Crows started the game with guns blazing. In the first five minutes ruckman Rory O’Brien had taken a strong mark and veteran Marc Murphy had passed to new recruit Tyson Stengle to goal; this was followed by Lachlan Murphy snapping accurately from the forward pocket to have the Crows two goals up.

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AFANA AFL Power Poll - Round 15

Crunch!

Round fifteen has opened up the race for the top eight with some highly fancied teams dropping games they were expected to win. Geelong bounced back from defeat at the hands of Port Adelaide last week by taking care of the other Adelaide team (the Crows) at GMHBA Stadium, holding on to top spot on the AFANA AFL Power Poll in the process.

Collingwood drops down to third on the Power Poll courtesy of a shock loss at the hands of a resurgent North Melbourne which climbs all the way to eighth under the control of interim coach Rhyce Shaw. The Eagles once again used some last minute heroics to defeat an unlucky Hawthorn at the MCG, with Jamie Cripps providing the match winning goal on this occasion.

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Blues Improve But Swans Winning Heros At Marvel Stadium

The roof was open for today’s Saturday afternoon match at Marvel Stadium.  The conditions overcast but comfortable and a good crowd rolled in through the first quarter.  For those that didn’t make it until quarter time they missed eleven goals and eight lead changes.  Quarters two and three were uneventful as the Swans slowly edged away before a final quarter that saw the Blues open up a window of opportunity but were unable to climb through it.

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Rance Injury Sours Tigers Win Over Blues

With Melbourne still under daylight savings the season opened during twilight at 7:25 PM at the MCG.  A minute’s silence for the Christchurch massacre silenced the crowd before the 85,016 fans in the house roared at the first bounce. The Tigers would pour on the pressure through the likes of Graham, Cotchin and Martin from the start and the Blues would show little apparent improvement from their wooden spoon effort of 2018 in the first quarter.

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AFANA AFL Power Poll - Round Twenty One

It's been a dark year for the Blues

Twenty one rounds into the AFL season and incredibly the finals and top four races remain wide open and just two weeks to go. A big win to Richmond over the Suns has locked up a top two spot for the reigning premiers while an amazing last gasp win to the Eagles – in almost identical fashion to their final in 2017, and once again over a distraught Port Adelaide – leaves them in great shape to finish in the top two and secure a home final.

A gutsy win to Hawthorn over Geelong has catapulted the Hawks into fourth position on the AFL ladder, in turn sending the Cats crashing out of the eight, while the Giants 14 point win over Adelaide kept them in great shape for a finals double chance while ending the Crows chances of any finals participation in the process.

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Fremantle Fights Off The Blues

Fremantle team enters stadium

It took until the third quarter for the Fremantle Dockers to break the shackles after a pedestrian start to take down bottom of the ladder dwellers the Carlton Blues. Carlton were struck a blow when their premier ruckman Matthew Kreuzer was omitted, possibly for the rest of the season, with an elevated heart rate when training the day before the match in Perth. After having lost five of the last six matches in the West, Carlton were going to need all the help they could get.

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AFANA AFL Power Poll - Round Nineteen

Martin takes mark away from Greenwood

And then there were eleven. After a cracking round nineteen that saw the Tigers hold off an injury hit but brilliant Collingwood, the Swans sink further into trouble with a loss to the Bombers and Carlton actually notch a win, there looks to be only eleven teams left in the race for the top eight. The Adelaide Crows all but dropped out of contention after being overrun by a revitalized Melbourne in the city of churches, while the Giants marched into top four contention with yet another win, this time over a plucky but inaccurate Saint Kilda.

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Saints Too Good for Midwinter Blues

Jack Steven handballs (from 2017)

On a midwinter’s night in what was effectively a dead rubber, the best that could be hoped for was a close match with some big highlights. Neither brief was filled. Having the roof closed was a small mercy at Etihad Stadium for the 33,780 fans. On form this match would almost certainly be a bankable win to the Saints.  In the end it was so, and no mercy was shown to the Blues on field. St Kilda won the toss and kicked to the Lockett end in what seems like a formality in the windless conditions. Carlton tonight were wearing their dirty grey clash strip with the curious fake pockets on their shorts.

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AFANA Power Poll - Round Fourteen

The Bombers ambushed the Eagles

Round fourteen saw the last of four “bye” weeks played out, with top teams Sydney and Richmond having the week off along with Geelong, Adelaide, Fremantle, Adelaide and Saint Kilda. The big winner of round fourteen was Port Adelaide, who beat fellow top four aspirants Melbourne in a tough game of tightly contested football at the Adelaide Oval. The biggest loser of the round

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