A round that was full of hefty margins and massacres has come to end, and there were only about three close games of footy.
Many teams made exclamation marks and the top eight has been moulded and shifted as surprising and startling results have come to the fore.
Here’s a review of the round’s highlights.
Did Adelaide snatch a surprise win to make the top eight?
No. They sure gave it a fair ride though, as Hawthorn shone through in what was a sparkling and high-scoring game. Friday night footy was at its finest and at the Adelaide Oval for the first time as Adelaide and Hawthorn locked horns.
Adelaide booted the first before Jack Gunston broke free and booted three, as the Hawks held a slender lead at the first break. Then the match settled into an open goal-for-goal rhythm as over 50,000 people enjoyed a final contest.
Hawthorn looked like they had it won just before three-quarter time, when Ray Chamberlain called time just as Luke Breust was setting up a goal. It turned out that there were still three seconds remaining as ‘Razor Ray’ was left looking shameful.
Adelaide came hard at the Hawks in the last quarter but the class of Hawthorn shone through like the sun does in a light cloud. The Hawks’ class made amends for last Friday’s horror performance as they regained the winning feeling and proved to everyone that they are still a force to be reckoned with.
When it comes to September, watch out for Hawthorn.
Did Melbourne upset another Victorian team?
No. The Cats went to the MCG and dominated from the first bounce, and many Melbourne players looked ready to be out of the pouring rain immediately as Geelong ran rampant and showed how well they play wet-weather footy.
The class of Steve Johnson, Joel Selwood and Steven Motlop was shown in many intelligent and linking runs through the middle with the Demons poor after quarter time, as they just couldn’t prise a goal from anywhere.
Melbourne’s defensive efforts were poor all day as they allowed Geelong to bring the ball from defence and transfer it down to the forward line with way too much ease. Some of the Dees players put in such lazy efforts that they would have appeared to be training cones to many of Geelong’s players.
The Cats will now look to settle in the top four as they enjoy an easy run home, while the Demons have dropped off after their decent first half of the season.
Did the Bombers cruise into the top eight?
Yes. The Bombers are sitting pretty at seventh after completely demolishing the Pies in all facets of the game. Collingwood’s structure and confidence was abolished as they only scored 39, with Essendon scoring more than a hundred in what was a complete four-quarter display for the Dons, who will now surely play finals.
The Pies now have a major question mark over their heads, as their earlier good form has tapered in recent weeks with their losses to the Bulldogs, Hawthorn, Gold Coast and now Essendon. Everything went Essendon’s way as the Pies imploded.
Collingwood will definitely struggle to make the finals as they face Adelaide, Port Adelaide, West Coast and Hawthorn in what will be a tough and bruising run home. This top eight isn’t solidified yet.
I tipped six out of nine, with my incorrect matches being Bulldogs versus Suns, Richmond versus Port and Collingwood versus Essendon.
Sidenote: I was four off for the margin of the Crows versus Hawks game, two off for the Roos versus Saints game and one off for the Eagles versus Lions game.