Scrappy Bulldogs beat Blues


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    The struggling Western Bulldogs have notched a much-needed AFL win, edging Carlton by 20 points in a scrappy MCG contest.

    The reigning premiers led by four goals at three-quarter time and staved off the depleted Blues to climb within a victory of the top eight.

    Sunday’s 12.10 (82) to 9.8 (62) win came at a cost for the Dogs, with key forward Jake Stringer succumbing to a hamstring injury minutes into the second quarter.

    Stringer immediately left the ground and sat out the rest of the game with his left leg iced.

    Carlton were reduced to a single rotation late in the game with Alex Silvagni, Ciaran Byrne and Dylan Buckley succumbing to injuries.

    It wasn’t the most convincing victory but the Bulldogs would be happy to take it after losing four of their past five games.

    After a dismal 59-point loss to Adelaide last week, the Dogs looked in danger of another blowout early on, conceding the first three goals to a fast-starting Carlton.

    The Dogs had 14 forward entries but no marks inside 50 in the first quarter, with Carlton’s tall defenders feasting on intercept marks.

    Classy midfielder Caleb Daniel proved the game-changer, racking up four inside-50s and 14 of his 25 disposals in an outstanding second term as the Dogs outscored the Blues five goals to one.

    There were shades of the Bulldogs of last year as Daniel, Marcus Bontempelli and eye-catching youngster Mitch Honeychurch put together some impressive handball chains.

    Up by 21 points at halftime, the Dogs struggled to press their advantage, with both sides lacking composure going forward.

    Opportunistic goals from Mitch Wallis and Toby McLean handed the advantage to the Dogs as the Blues ran out of legs during the fourth quarter.

    Matthew Kreuzer dominated the ruck battle with 50 hitouts, Matthew Wright booted three goals and Bryce Gibbs led Carlton’s midfield brigade with 32 disposals.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (4)

    • July 17th 2017 @ 4:17pm
      The Original Buzz said | July 17th 2017 @ 4:17pm | ! Report

      There were a few highlights but overall this game was hard to watch. Both teams played poorly but the dogs less so.

      • July 17th 2017 @ 4:50pm
        Macca said | July 17th 2017 @ 4:50pm | ! Report

        Agree Buzz. With Kreuzers dominance we really missed Cripps.

        One thing that really stood out for me was that twice graham just had to put the ball close to a free player in our forward line (Silvagni once and Curnow the second time) and missed by a mile but then he hit Wright with a precision pass hard up on the boundary with a bloke on his hammer – it was that sort of day.

        • July 17th 2017 @ 6:00pm
          Darren said | July 17th 2017 @ 6:00pm | ! Report

          Was it that sort of day Macca or just reflective of Graham’s skills and decision making at AFL level? That Curnow kick (I’ve only seen the replay) should have been a left foot. He had an over inflated view of his skills – his momentum was going back left and he needed to hit Curnow forward right of him off one step kicking over a player on the mark. That was a difficult kick that needed more skill than Graham has. He should have turned on his left and kicked around the guy on the mark. It’s a combination of decision making and skills that he fails way too often and and for me say he is not going to be a long term AFL player – unless he focusses on understanding his role; his skills and consistently executing. He could do worse than spend some time with Wright – someone who understands this perfectly.

          • July 18th 2017 @ 9:02am
            Macca said | July 18th 2017 @ 9:02am | ! Report

            Darren – I agree largely on Graham but the kick to wright just 30 seconds after his kick to Curnow shows he has decent foot skills at times.

            I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets another year given he has been reasonable when brought in this year but he will continue to be used as a depth player.

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