The last three games of Round 12 saw Adelaide make a strong bid for the top four, Collingwood become more secure as number two and West Coast and Greater Western Sydney get some slight wobbles.
Sydney’s meritorious win is really too little, too late but it does underline that when they have most of their players on the park and firing well they are a top-eight side.
However, they remain two wins outside the eight with five teams above them and only ten games to play. What was pleasing for them was Buddy’s form, who now has 936 AFL goals and 356 goals for the Swans, courtesy of his five goals on Sunday.
Tom Papley also scored five goals and smashed through the 100 goals barrier, passing Bob Kingston, Gary Brice, Bill Gunn, Harry Morgan and Chris Laird along the way and drawing level with Hayden McAuliffe in the top 60 goal scorers of all time at the Swans.
For West Coast, Josh Kennedy with three goals passed heartthrob Tony Modra and now sits 35th on the AFL all-time list.
Eddie Betts, in Saturday night’s game only got two goals so he sits one goal behind Modra in 37th place. ‘Tex’ Walker also scored two goals as Adelaide – again aided by a strong last quarter – outlasted the talented Greater Western Sydney team in Adelaide.
For the Giants, Jeremy Cameron was restricted to just one goal whereas Josh Kelly scored two and moved ahead of now Hawk Tom Scully and into outright eighth place on Greater Western Sydney’s all-time goal scorers list.
On the Queens Birthday game, Collingwood played as well as they had to and accounted for Melbourne gradually increasing their lead quarter by quarter. Jordan de Goey kicked three goals and moved further up the list of goal scorers passing Paul Medhurst, Scott Russell, Graham Wright and James Manson.
His elite goal-scoring teammate Steele Sidebottom scored one goal which took him to level with former captain Tony Shaw, who also coached the Magpies.
The only joys for Melbourne were that Jeff Garlett’s one goal made him the current number one elite goal scorer at the club ahead of Nathan Jones and Christian Petracca’s one goal means he now shares 100th position on the Demon’s all-time top 100 goal scorers list with now 60-year-old utility from Mentone Grammar Andrew Moir and dual premiership player Bryan Kenneally from Lyndhurst-Hampton Park.
Amongst the AFL elite game players, seven of the ten played on the weekend and all bar Kade Simpson and Lance Franklin climbed further up the ladder of AFL games played.
As mentioned earlier, among the six-goal scorers out of eight that played on the weekend, Josh Kennedy advanced up one position on the AFL list.
Gary Ablett – returning to the Geelong side from suspension – climbed past former Collingwood champion Lou Richards on the AFL goal scorers list and past David Clarke on the Cat’s goalkicking list. His two goals took him to 424 AFL goals and 300 goals for the Cats.