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Round 24, 2011         Carlton lost to St Kilda by 20 points in a disappointing end to the H&A Rounds. But now...for the Finals...

Round 24, 2011

Carlton 3.5 23 5.8 38 7.12 54 9.12 66
St Kilda 1.2 8 4.3 27 9.6 60 13.8 86
Venue: MCG
Date: Saturday September 3 (Night)
Result: Loss by 20 points
Crowd: 55,606
Goalkickers: O'hAilpin 4, Gibbs 2, Tuohy, Kreuzer, Simpson 1
Reports: Nil
Umpires: M. Nicholls, B. Rosebury, M. Stevic,
Injuries: Kreuzer (foot)
Ladder: 5th


Game Review

It wasn’t quite a dead rubber, but it had well and truly been read its last rights. The Blues had very little to play for - a place in the side for some, form running into the finals, perhaps pride for the jumper, little else. For the Saints it was all about the chance of a home final rather than a dreaded trip to Sydney and in the end that little extra something to play for appeared to make all the difference.

Illustration: http://www.samcrook.com
The selection committee juggled a few things around when they met in preparation for naming the round 24 side. Bret Thornton was rested to allow time to recover from general soreness, while David Ellard and Marcus Davies were both omitted from the originally selected side. When they ran out onto the field there were two prominent bodies missing from the bunch. Both Andrew Carrazzo and Michael Jamison had been named in the side but didn’t quite make the final cut. Carrazzo had been involved in a minor car accident the day before and had woken with a stiff neck, while Jamison’s omission was the ultra-conservative approach due to some soreness after training. Into the side came two Irishmen (not often you get to write that) with Setanta O’hAilpin and Zach Tuohy being recalled, Jordan Russell (where have you been?) and the almost forgotten Kane Lucas back for his first run since round one. Davies also got a lifeline.

With Carlton hosting at the MCG some pundits figured their speed on the vast expanses would run the Saints off their legs. Some also postured that the Saints’ suffocating defensive press might find it more difficult to cover and clog the MCG’s large area with its usual restriction. The way the game started neither of those theories seemed to stack up. The Blues hardly touched the ball in the early stages and when they did, looking up to a sea of white Saints jumpers ahead seemed to freeze them into indecisive inaction. Whilst the Saints didn’t do much damage on the scoreboard during that early period (a goal to serial pest Milne) the writing appeared to be on the wall. Once the Blues started getting a little possession they at times appeared dangerous. Chris Yarran was weaving through traffic like a motorbike on the freeway and seemed able to waltz around opponents at will. Carlton’s first two goals had a remarkably similar feel to them; the big body of O’hAilpin jostling for position, the ball somehow landing in his arms for the mark, followed by a clinical shot at goal. Matthew Kreuzer briefly displayed his sublime ground level skills with a nice pick up and snap on his left for the Blues third on the trot, but when Jeff Garlett marked just metres out from goal and inexplicably played on and missed the groans (and laughter) in the crowd were deafening. After gaining the ascendency in the latter part of the term the Blues took a 15 point break to the change.

With O’hAilpin mysteriously moved to defence, presumably to match it with the Saints tall timber, the forward line didn’t look quite so effective. The Saints got out of the blocks better once again and had two quick ones on the board after four minutes before the Blues steadied. Bryce Gibbs was knocking through goals effortlessly in the pre-game warm up and that form continued when it counted as he guided through two in a row (both from marks) to once again push the Blues clear. Carlton fans watched Kreuzer hobble off and waited nervously to see why he’d been substituted. Post match Ratten indicated his foot had “gone to sleep” and that he’d been sent for scans. Back on field the Saints grabbed a late one to reduce the Blues lead to 11 point at the half.

Zach Tuohy showed some dash and (after getting himself in and out of trouble) finished nicely from about 40m to get the Blues off to a good start in the second half. But the rest of the term was all about the Saints. With some restructuring of their defensive zone during the break the Carlton turnovers seemed to flow freely from it. They kicked five goals for the term with only O’hAilpin able to break the run with his third, after making amends for another disastrous miss from close range. It seemed it was Carlton’s night for the terrible miss, as next Davies added to the woe with the team’s third deflating miss on the night shortly after. Kade Simpson tried to lift the team as he worked his butt off accumulating a career-high 40 disposals in the process and Lachie Henderson continued his more than handy form as a key defender keeping Riewoldt quiet. For all the Saints domination the Blues only trailed by a goal at the final change, but the all important momentum was well and truly with St. Kilda.

The Saints stamped their authority on the game with the first two goals of the term making it a long way back for the Blues. Simpson knocked down a trademark goal from 50m on the run to slow their run, but it all looked too little too late as the Saints promptly responded with their third for the quarter. Big man O’hAilpin more than staked his claim for inclusion in next week’s elimination final with his fourth for the game late in the term, but that was the Blues last hurrah. The Carlton fans were streaming out of the gates well before the final siren on the back of a disappointing, but not totally unexpected, result. Final margin was 20 points to the Saints. All eyes now turn to Carlton’s third consecutive elimination final, this time against the arch enemy Essendon. Go Blues!

Subs: Substitute Marc Davies replaced Matthew Kreuzer during the 2nd quarter (16 minute mark)

Team


B: 34 Nick Duigan 23 Lachie Henderson 45 Aaron Joseph
HB: 13 Chris Yarran 15 Jeremy Laidler 42 Zach Tuohy
C: 6 Kade Simpson 5 Chris Judd (c) 29 Heath Scotland
HF: 3 Marc Murphy 4 Bryce Gibbs 1 Andrew Walker
F: 19 Eddie Betts 17 Setanta Ó hAilpín 8 Matthew Kreuzer
Ruck: 11 Robert Warnock 12 Mitch Robinson 27 Dennis Armfield
Interchange: 2 Jordan Russell 9 Kane Lucas 38 Jeffery Garlett
Substitute: 31 Marcus Davies
Coach: Brett Ratten
Emg: 40 Michael Jamison, 44 Andrew Carrazzo, 46 David Ellard,

-* Late Changes Marcus Davies and Jordan Russell replaced Andrew Carrazzo and Michael Jamison

Brownlow Votes

3. Kade Simpson, Carlton
2. Leigh Montagna, St. Kilda
1. Sam Gilbert, St. Kilda

Best & Fairest Votes

Kade Simpson 42, Lachie Henderson 39, Setanta Ó hAilpín 23, Jeremy Laidler 21, Robert Warnock 21, Marc Murphy 17, Dennis Armfield 9, Marcus Davies 8, Aaron Joseph 4, Zach Tuohy 4, Nick Duigan 3

Ladder


  2011 Rd 24 P W D L For Agn % Pts
1 Collingwood 22 20 0 2 2592 1546 167.66 80
2 Geelong 22 19 0 3 2548 1619 157.38 76
3 Hawthorn 22 18 0 4 2355 1634 144.12 72
4 West Coast 22 17 0 5 2235 1715 130.32 68
5 Carlton 22 14 1 7 2225 1700 130.88 58
6 St Kilda 22 12 1 9 1891 1677 112.76 50
7 Sydney 22 12 1 9 1897 1735 109.34 50
8 Essendon 22 11 1 10 2217 2217 100.00 46
9 North Melbourne 22 10 0 12 2106 2082 101.15 40
10 Western Bulldogs 22 9 0 13 2060 2155 95.59 36
11 Fremantle 22 9 0 13 1791 2155 83.11 36
12 Richmond 22 8 1 13 2069 2396 86.35 34
13 Melbourne 22 8 1 13 1974 2315 85.27 34
14 Adelaide 22 7 0 15 1742 2193 79.43 28
15 Brisbane Lions 22 4 0 18 1814 2240 80.98 16
16 Port Adelaide 22 3 0 19 1718 2663 64.51 12
17 Gold Coast 22 3 0 19 1534 2726 56.2 12

Game
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Agst Rich G.Cst Coll
Ess
Adel Sydney St.Kilda BYE Geel Melb P.Adel
Bris
Posn
3
2
4
5
4
3
3
4
5
4
4
3
% 123.8 202.2
146.6
135.0 129.5 124.4 124.8 124.8 120.6 126.0 132.6 137.6
Game
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
:21::
22
23
24
Agst Sydney W.Cst Rich W.Bull Coll Ess N.Melb Melb Frem Haw BYE St.Kilda
Posn
3
4
3
4
4
4
4
4
4
5
5
5
% 138.6 130.9 138.2 132.7 128.6 132.5 132.3 136.3 136.2 133.7 133.7 130.8


Round 23 | Elimination Final, 2011

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