Swans smash GWS in Sydney’s AFL derby
Sydney were boosted into the top four on the back of some flying starts, but in Saturday night’s AFL derby it was a ruthless second half that underlined their 94-point win over cross-town rivals Greater Western Sydney.
The Giants did something Geelong couldn’t manage last week – reining in the Swans’ early momentum to trail by only 14 points at quarter time.
An upset was still achievable at that moment and while Sydney built their advantage to 37 points at halftime, GWS still managed to curtail the Swans’ momentum for large sections of the second term.
But any lingering thoughts of an upset were swiftly removed by the Swans, with Brett Kirk medallist Kieren Jack seizing control of the contest to help craft the 19.18 (132) to 5.8 (38) victory.
Jack finished with 33 disposals and six tackles to be named best on ground, while co-captain Jarrad McVeigh had a game-high 37 touches.
GWS coach Kevin Sheedy suggested pre-match the fixture would be a yardstick for how much his side had developed since a 63-point loss to Sydney in round one.
Instead it showcased the Swans’ progress – they were a far more ruthless team compared to the one that managed 14.16 against a more inexperienced GWS outfit in the season opener.
A crowd of just 22,565 – well down on the tally of 38,203 that witnessed the Giants’ maiden AFL match – were treated to a unique match.
Pressure from both sides ensured plenty of stoppages and a largely uninspiring and scrappy contest, but a series of spectacular solo efforts provided plenty of fodder for both clubs’ highlight reels.
Wingman Lewis Jetta, who took his season tally to 31 goals with three majors, started the show in the first quarter by calmly slotting his set shot after marking the ball close to where the 50m arc meets the boundary line.
However the Giants cut down Sydney’s free space – best underlined by a 24-9 tackle count at quarter time – and Jeremy Cameron reduced their buffer to 14 points at the first break with a deft banana kick.
GWS midfielder Rhys Palmer kept his side in the contest in the second term by climbing over a pack and kicking truly, but Cameron, Jonathan Giles and Jonathon Patton all missed goals they could have kicked.
Jack then spearheaded the Swans’ third-quarter surge with two goals – one of them a remarkable kick from the boundary line.
GWS veteran Luke Power was stretchered off in the last quarter with a rib injury, while teammate Dylan Shiel also limped off with an apparent ankle complaint.© AAP 2013