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Gunston Kicks Four as Hawks Upset Brisbane

Jack Gunston (file photo/AFANA)

Hawthorn playing one of their occasional home game at Marvel Stadium hosted the Brisbane Lions. The past few seasons the Hawks have maintained a 4-0 winning record against the Lions and come into this game having lost last week giving up a strong three-quarter time lead. The Lions were injury ravaged and looking vulnerable against the Hawks. The Hawks had plenty of the ball early under the Marvel roof, but their kicking options and disposal let them down. The taller Lions players giving them some trouble. On the first turnover, Lachie Neale, Charlie Cameron, and Eric Hipwood made the Hawks look unaccountable and slow, with Hipwood kicking an easy goal after getting out the back. The Hawks were lucky Brisbane missed two easy goals, and they were able to get things close to parity when Day hit Gunston on a fast lead in the pocket.  The veteran Hawk kicking his first goal against the side he played with in 2023.

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Moore's Four Leads Hawks to First Win This Season

Conor Nash (file photo/AFANA)

The bottom of the ladder clash rounded out this footy weekend.  Both teams winless, with the Hawks in 17th and the Kangaroos in 18th position. Fans from both teams arrived today hoping to see their club's first win for the season. The Kangaroos were quick out of the blocks and a long kick to the goal square saw Eddie Ford rove at the back of the pack and snap it home from a tight angle to open the scoring. The Roos backed it up when again the long kick in traveled over the top of the pack and was scooped up by the quick running Jy Simpkin who ran into goal to score from point blank range.

Hawthorn finally found some composure and Macdonald's kick over the top to find Gunston deep in the pocket, making for an easy set shot around the body for the veteran. A minute later he marked at the top of the 50 meter line and dished off to Amon who was running past and easily cleared the goal line to put the Hawks in front for the first time today. The Hawks began to dominate around the ground, but their kicking was letting them down a bit. A nice hit up of Moore 30 meters out straight in front though, saw them kick their 3rd goal and take a seven point lead to the first break.

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Milestone Man Hawkins Kicks Four on Easter Monday

4 for Hawkins in his 350th gm (File photo)

Overcast but warm conditions at the MCG greeted the teams after an earlier brief thunderstorm. Geelong produced the first goal of the day through Tyson Stengle deep in the forward pocket marked and goaled early. Cameron Mackenzie kicked the Hawks first for the match from 25 meters out straight in front receiving a quick handball and scrambling a kick over oncoming defenders.

In his 350th game, Tom Hawkins lead deep into the pocket marked, and in what is considered the wrong side for a right footer, calmly kicked the drop punt goal straight through the middle. Close received a free kick 30 meters out from goal (after being taken to the cleaners while disposing of the ball, and he snapped the goal around the body for the Cat's second. Hawkins repeated the earlier lead and mark, but his second shot from the pocket hit the post. Sicily took on Ollie Henry but couldn't get past the fierce tackling. Henry's next kick from that same pocket followed as Hawkins saw the Cats kick their third goal for the quarter. The Cats would make all the right moves and Cameron, Henry, and Hawkins, all helped themselves to goals against a meager resistance and took a 36 point lead to quarter time.

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Hawthorn Hall of Fame

Luke Hodge

In late February, Hawthorn announced three hew inductees into their Hall of Fame, and one elevation to legend status. The hew inductees were Sam Mitchell, Alan Martello, and Luke Hodge. Premiership coach Allan Jeans was elevated to legend status. The honor was posthumous as Jeans passed away in 2011. Jeans coached the Hawks through one of the club’s most successful eras, netting three premierships from six consecutive Grand Final appearances. Jeans joins other club Legends, John Kennedy Sr., Leigh Matthews, Graham Arthur, Michael Tuck, David Parkin, Peter Hudson, Jason Dunstall, Peter Knights, and Don Scott. The official induction ceremony will be held in April.

THE INDUCTEES

SAM MITCHELL

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Signings, Retirements, and Sackings

Players have been added or dropped from five AFL clubs in recent weeks for a wide range of reasons. 

North Melbourne has terminated Tarryn Thomas. Thomas, aged 23, was recently banned from playing for 18 weeks after another incident of inappropriate behavior. He has faced charges of domestic violence and other offenses against several women. The club, after numerous interventions and support structures to help him, have run out of patience.

A statement released by the club said in part, "The club has provided Tarryn with significant time, resources and support but we've now arrived at a point where the individual's needs don't match those of the club. We know Tarryn needs help - for himself and for the women in his life - but it's clear the path we've taken over the past 12 months hasn't had the desired impact ... we have made the decision to end Tarryn's time at North Melbourne. This decision doesn't come lightly or easily ... we acknowledge that he has faced complex and challenging circumstances over his life. We hope Tarryn will find the support that is right for him and that he does the work required to be the best version of himself."

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Hawks Delist Duo

Wingard running (AFANA file photo)

Hawthorn has delisted Chad Wingard and Copper Stephens but will redraft them as rookies in the upcoming draft. Wingard has played 218 games across his 12-year career and is currently working through rehab for a serious achilleas injury sustained earlier this year. Stephens joined the Hawks through the 2022 trade period after spending three seasons with Geelong where he played seven games in his final year. The changes will allow the club to utilize all selections acquired prior and during the recent trade period. 

Source: Jake Keating, Hawthorn Media Release

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Four Clubs Drop Players and Prepare for Draft

Kayne Turner (file photo/AFANA)

Just after the trade period, several clubs delisted more players due the acquisitions during the trade period and to make more room on their lists for the upcoming draft. Hawthorn, North Melbourne, Brisbane, and Sydney cleared roster spots for new talent. 

Hawthorn delisted Lachlan Bramble, Fergus Greene, and Ned Long. Bramble, 25 years old, was selected in the 2021 preseason SSP and played 30 games. Long, 20 years old, was picked up in the 2021 rookie draft and played five games. Greene was drafted by the Bulldogs in 2016 and played five games before joining Hawthorn as a delisted free agent in 2022. He played 11 games.

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Plowman Retires from Blues; Hawks and Kangaroos Delist Seven

Carlton defender Lachie Plowman has retired. Hawthorn delisted Josh Morris, Emerson Jeka, and released Fionn O'Hara. North Melbourne said goodbye to Lachie Young, Flynn Perez, Phoenix Spicer, and Jacob Edwards.

Plowman, 29, was originally drafted by GWS in 2012 and played 20 games for the Giants before being traded to Carton at the end of 2015. He played 125 games for the Blues. In 2019, Plowman enjoyed a breakthrough season, playing every game and finishing third in the best and fairest count. A beloved member of the playing group, Plowman established himself as a player with a team-first attitude, who was often required to take the most dangerous small forwards from opposing teams.

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Late August Delistings and Retirements

Menengola clears (file photo)

At the end of August, the Western Bulldogs delisted Mitch Hannan. Essendon delisted Alistair Lord, Rhett Montgomerie, and Cian McBride. Geelong player Sam Menegola retired. Brisbane defender Marcus Adams also retired. Hawthorn forward Tyler Brockman wants to go back to Western Australia. 

Geelong midfielder Sam Menegola retired after Round 24. He was originally drafted by Hawthorn in 2011 as a rookie but was delisted at the end of the year. The Dockers selected him as a rookie 2012 but he never debuted for them either and was delisted after three seasons. He played in the WAFL in 2015 and was eventually drafted by the Cats t the end of 2015. He played 117 games and kicked 83 goals for the Cats. His 2023 season was marred by injuries. He said, “The time I have had at Geelong has had an immeasurable impact on our lives. I have enjoyed successes, faced challenges, learnt lessons, and developed relationships that will stay with me for a long time. I have had a chance to fulfil a lifelong dream ... ".

General Manager Simon Lloyd said,

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Farewells to Four More

Jonas Pressures Watts (file photo)

Ahead of Round 24, four more players announced their retirements. Tom Jonas, Tom Hickey, Josh Bruce, and Jonathon Ceglar all indicated that their AFL careers were ending.

Port Adelaide captain Tom Jonas will retire at the end of the season. He has been in and out of the team this season. Jonas, 32, said in a club statement, “It’s been a fair roller coaster but for me there have been so many more ups than downs. You reflect on moments that maybe at the time were tough and challenging, exhausting or sad, but ultimately, they’re what makes you appreciate the good times and they’re what make you galvanize relationships and friendships with everyone that you spend time with along the way. The good thing about this for me is that the final chapter hasn’t been written ... For me it was about removing any distraction from the team with what we’ve got to look forward to in the month ahead (i.e., finals) ... ".

Coach Ken Hinkley, who has coached Jonas in 11 of his 13 seasons, said, “Tom has always given his all, whether that is on the field or off it ... He’s had to create his own path right from the start with enormous challenges along the way. While this season he has not always been first choice at selection, the way he has handled himself is the perfect example of his team-first attitude ... ".

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