Round 9 started with an exciting game in Perth where a gallant Melbourne were eventually overrun by an Eagles unit that is beginning to look a very good chance to make back-to-back grand finals, if not premierships.
The highlight of Round 18 was the Suns upset victory over the Swans.
Full credit must go to Suns coach Stuart Dew and co-captain Steven May, who were the architects of what should be considered the upset of the season against the Swans. May managed to keep Lance Franklin from scoring a goal.
1. Stuart Dew (Suns)
2. Nathan Buckley (Magpies)
3. Simon Goodwin (Demons)
4. Chris Fagan (Lions)
5. Damien Hardwick (Tigers)
Saints vs Tigers: Another Friday night blowout
For the second week in a row there was a one-sided game on Friday night. On this occasion, the Saints were on the wrong side of the ledger.
Saints team lifter: Sebastian Ross
Tigers team lifters: Dion Prestia, Dustin Martin
Magpies vs Kangaroos: Hot Pies sizzle, while Kangaroos fall apart
The Magpies place in September appears to be cemented following a comprehensive victory over the Kangaroos. The Kangaroos are now in a precarious position. Their hopes of playing finals are suddenly in the balance.
Magpies team lifter: Taylor Adams
Kangaroos team lifter: Shaun Higgins
Swans vs Suns: A week is a long time in footy
Last weekend the Suns faded away, but this round they showed everyone what they are capable of by beating the Swans, putting in a four-quarter effort to get their most memorable win of the season, despite being without Tom Lynch and David Swallow.
Swans team lifter: Luke Parker
Suns team lifter: Steven May
Bombers vs Dockers: The Dockers should have been obliterated
The Bombers had thirty-four shots on goal to the Dockers fifteen, yet somehow the Bombers only won by twenty-nine points. These two teams have been inconsistent and hard to get a read on and this can be summed up by the fact the Bombers still have a mathematical chance of featuring in September, due to their impressive recent form.
Bombers team lifter: Devon Smith
Dockers team lifter: Lachie Neale
Lions vs Crows: The Lions are showing signs of rejuvenation
The Lions are now a force to be reckoned with. Despite losing to the Crows, they played a good style. Adelaide won their second game in a row showing signs that they are back on track.
Lions team lifter: Alex Witherden
Crows team lifter: Matt Crouch
Cats vs Demons: Sport can be cruel
In spite of having played a quality game and having executed the game plan well the Demons went home empty-handed. The Cats won despite having eight less scoring shots. This game went down to the wire with the last kick of the game deciding the result.
Cats team lifter: Tom Hawkins
Demons team lifter: Clayton Oliver
Blues vs Hawks: The Blues were deplorable
It’s now indisputable the Blues are the worst team in the competition. The Blues didn’t execute the game plan – that or they have no system. The Hawks didn’t have a bad player; everyone managed to gather at least ten possessions.
Blues team lifter: Patrick Cripps
Hawks team lifter: Tom Mitchell
Eagles vs Bulldogs: The Eagles are a contender for the premiership
The Eagles put in a ruthless performance against a depleted Bulldogs team. The Bulldogs struggled and were outclassed.
Eagles team lifter: Andrew Gaff
Bulldogs team lifter: Toby Mclean
Power vs Giants: Power fail to kick ten goals for second week in a row
The Power’s hopes of featuring in September lie in the balance, while the Giants’ form is looking ominous. A great achievement for the Giants to win in the city of churches.
Power team lifter: Robbie Gray
Giants team lifter: Lachie Whitfield