Eddie Betts speaks following his “emotional” return to Carlton.
The Adelaide Crows have claimed their second AFLW premiership with a comfortable 45-point win over the Carlton Blues in the 2019 AFLW grand final.
Carlton’s rising star Maddy Prespakis kicked the first goal of the match to put the Blues ahead early after Adelaide gifted her a golden opportunity through giving away a 50m penalty.
It didn’t prove to be a precursor of things to come – instead the Crows quickly got the game back under control and never looked seriously challenged by the Blues who were 4-3 in the home-and-away and qualified for finals on the back of finishing top in Conference B.
Nothing can sour a premiership win but serious knee injuries to both Chloe Scheer and Erin Phillips during the match came about as close as anything could.
Scheer took a great hanger to set up the first goal of the second quarter for Danielle Ponter, who went on to kick three goals in six minutes in that quarter, but Scheer went down with a knee injury shortly after.
Phillips booted the first and ultimately only goal of the second half – her second for the match to go with 18 disposals – but went down with a knee injury shortly after.
In one of the most touching sporting moments we’ll see this year, Phillips received a standing ovation from the crowd as she was stretchered off, and every player on field – friend and foe – ran to console her.
Speaking of the crowd – they were just incredible. 53,038 fans turned out to Adelaide Oval today for the grand final, smashing the previous attendance record for an AFLW match by a figure of more than 10,000.
The Crows had raucous support whenever they needed it and Carlton players even commented during the match on how difficult it was to communicate with each other above the immense volume the fans were putting out.
Phillips performance’ up to the point of her injury in the third quarter was so good as to be awarded the medal for best on ground in the grand final despite having missed an entire quarter.
Chelsea Randall proved vital for the Crows, keeping a variety of Carlton forwards including Tayla Harris quiet when needed, while Anne Hatchard had 24 disposals and a goal.
Skipper Bri Davey was the best for Carlton with 22 disposals and a goal.
In a nice touch, premiership coach Matthew Clarke was presented with his medal by 2017 Adelaide AFLW premiership coach Bec Goddard.
Adelaide Crows 10.3.63
Carlton Blues 2.6.18