Capitulation in Geelong: Bulldogs could head out of the eight

By John Salvado,

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    Nine games into their stuttering AFL premiership defence, the Western Bulldogs could well find themselves out of the top eight by the end of the weekend, having been over-run by Geelong.

    The Bulldogs came into the three-quarter time huddle at Simonds Stadium on Friday night in the box seat, having booted six goals on the trot to turn a 26-point halftime deficit into a nine-point lead.

    But a 50-metre penalty against Travis Cloke which gifted a goal to Cats skipper Joel Selwood early in the final term was a hammer blow.

    The hard-tackling home team regained the momentum and ran away to win 16.8 (104) to 12.9 (81).

    “I’m not going to hang any of our players out to dry, I’m never going to do that,” said Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge.

    “The vast majority, weight of numbers of our group were doing everything they could to win the game.

    “Unfortunately we need our 22 week-to-week to have a really consistent and even contribution and we were almost there.

    “We had the upper hand, the arm-wrestle was in our favour and we should have gone on and won it.”

    A huge positive for the Bulldogs was the excellent return by midfielder Mitch Wallis, who had 26 disposals and kicked a couple of clever goals in his first senior match since breaking a leg in round 18 last year.

    “It was great to see him come back like that – it was a strong return,” said Beveridge.

    The Bulldogs were also well served by Caleb Daniel and Lin Jong, with the latter showing his versatility by pinch-hitting in the ruck against much bigger opponents.

    The eighth-placed Bulldogs slipped to a 5-4 win-loss record and face three more tough games either side of the bye against St Kilda and Melbourne at Etihad Stadium and away to Sydney at the SCG.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (18)

    • Roar Pro

      May 20th 2017 @ 6:50am
      berrlins said | May 20th 2017 @ 6:50am | ! Report

      It was good to see Wallis and Dickson had good return games. But geez the dogs don’t look like a top 8 team and probably haven’t all year. A couple of good quarters but they still have a long way to go.

    • May 20th 2017 @ 9:15am
      teedog said | May 20th 2017 @ 9:15am | ! Report

      I think the dogs last year were more of a 2008 hawthorn I always believed they wouldn’t make it to the big dance this year because they are still quite young they will still be up there in the next few years with the Saints, Melbourne and GWS

    • Roar Pro

      May 20th 2017 @ 9:32am
      Andrew Macdougall said | May 20th 2017 @ 9:32am | ! Report

      The 50 metre penalty overshadows the non holding the ball on Selwood prior when he was tackled trying to kick the ball and clearly drops it missing his boot, then Cloke gets into his back but that one is paid.

      • Roar Guru

        May 20th 2017 @ 10:36am
        Cat said | May 20th 2017 @ 10:36am | ! Report

        There was 50 such calls that failed to be called either way. Cats got away with some, so did the dogs. The umpiring was bad both ways.

        • Roar Pro

          May 20th 2017 @ 12:57pm
          Andrew Macdougall said | May 20th 2017 @ 12:57pm | ! Report

          Plus the Murphy holding the ball when he kicked it, my point being, both resulted in Geelong goals.

          Agree umpiring was pretty average.

          • Roar Guru

            May 20th 2017 @ 1:36pm
            Cat said | May 20th 2017 @ 1:36pm | ! Report

            A Cats player got tackled 10m out from goal by a Bulldogs defender who had his arm VERY clearly over the shoulder AND fell into the Cats players back, but neither high nor in the back was called. That was a sure goal not paid.
            Plenty of Bulldog throws lead to them getting goals too. Was plenty of should have been incorrect disposal calls that would have lead to goals to both sides. Don’t just cherry pick one or two calls because they didn’t go the way you wanted.

          • Roar Guru

            May 20th 2017 @ 2:14pm
            Paul D said | May 20th 2017 @ 2:14pm | ! Report

            I didn’t think it was that terrible. The umpires got some pretty tough calls right too.

            Dogs lost fair and square, and dogs fans must want to be the new hawks with all the moaning they do every time they think the umpires don’t love them

    • May 20th 2017 @ 10:27am
      West Crash said | May 20th 2017 @ 10:27am | ! Report

      Dogs will eventually make it top 8 as they have a better draw towards latter part of the season and with full squad back
      They deserve to be there. They didn’t loose any badly to date nor won convincingly. But with never give style, they are a top 6 side

    • Roar Guru

      May 20th 2017 @ 11:53am
      TomC said | May 20th 2017 @ 11:53am | ! Report

      The headline’s a bit rough. I thought the Cats were excellent.

      • Roar Guru

        May 20th 2017 @ 11:56am
        Cat said | May 20th 2017 @ 11:56am | ! Report

        3 out of 4 quarters they were.

    • May 20th 2017 @ 2:15pm
      mattyb said | May 20th 2017 @ 2:15pm | ! Report

      The premiership favourites headed down to Geelong and unfortunately it was not to be.
      The game started out at a frantic pace but to Geelongs credit they used their home ground advantage to lock the dogs out of the game in the second quarter and this proved the deciding factor in the game fo mine.
      After a great comeback in the third the dogs tired and Geelong ran away in the last.
      Poor discipline by Cloke I felt cost the champs dearly by giving away that 50 after conceding a free kick early in the last.
      Plenty of good signs for the dogs but they still need to put it together over four quarters. I liked Dales game from the younger brigade and thought Boyd showed some good signs in his development.

      Votes
      5. Wood
      4. Jong
      3. Adams
      2. Boyd
      1. Johanissen

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