|Date:||Sunday, (early) June 22, 2014|
|Result:||Lost by 8 points|
|Goalkickers:||T. Menzel 3, B. McLean 2, J. Waite 2, D. Thomas 2, D. Armfield, A. Everitt, A. Walker, Z. Tuohy, B. Gibbs 1.|
|Umpires:||S. Jeffery, A. Mitchell, B. Ryan|
|Injuries:||M. Murphy (hamstring tightness) replaced in selected side by D. Armfield, S. White (knee)|
Game ReviewCarlton’s season plummeted to new depths, and discontent among the club’s supporter base continued to grow after an eight-point loss to the emerging GWS Giants on this Sunday afternoon at Giants Stadium at Sydney Showgrounds. Trailing by 21 points at half-time and 14 points at the last change, the Blues finished strongly to kick the last three majors of the match, but fell short at the final siren and suffered their fourth defeat in as many weeks.
Prior to this game, GWS had been comfortably beaten by Carlton in both of their previous encounters, although the Westerners were continuing to make progress and it was only a matter of time before their young, talent-laden list produced a consistently competitive team. At selection, Carlton made three changes to the side beaten by Hawthorn in round 13, recalling Lachie Henderson, Michael Jamison and Ed Curnow from injury, at the expense of Matthew Watson, Nick Graham and Dennis Armfield. However, less than 30 minutes before the first bounce, Carlton captain Marc Murphy was ruled out by hamstring tightness. Armfield was recalled as the Blues’ substitute, and vice-captain Andrew Carrazzo stepped up in Murphy’s place.
In cool, clear weather in front of a sparse crowd of less than 10,000, Chris Judd got the Blues off to a flying start when he burst from a pack and kicked to Troy Menzel, who passed on to Andrew Walker for the first goal of the match after four minutes of open, entertaining play. Both teams were intent on quick, decisive movement, and the ball swirled from end to end in an entertaining first quarter that was highlighted by two goals in two minutes by Giant Dylan Shiel, and a clever right-foot skidder from deep in the forward pocket by Dale Thomas in reply. Scores were level at the first break at 5.1 apiece, with a real contest brewing.
The second quarter belonged to the Giants, and two of their big men – Shane Mumford and Jon Patton. Mumford was proving more than a handful for Carlton’s Rob Warnock in the ruck, and the former Sydney Swan’s second and third efforts saw the home side win most of the clearances. Consequently, the ball was pumped forward time after time for GWS, where Patton was too quick on the lead and too strong in the air for Sam Rowe. At the 22-minute mark of the quarter, Patton took his seventh mark for the game and calmly bombed a monster goal from outside the 50-metre arc, giving the Giants a 22-point lead and a real sniff of victory. Meanwhile, Mitch Robinson, Bryce Gibbs, Judd, Menzel and Thomas were standing tall for Carlton, but without enough support.
The third quarter saw more of the same fast open football from both sides as GWS withstood all that Carlton could throw at them. Judd’s sublime pick-up under pressure, and his pass to Andrejs Everitt for a six-pointer after 13 even minutes cut the deficit to 14 points, before Jarrad Waite’s clever snap from deep in the left forward pocket got the Blues to within 8 points. Meanwhile, Simon White had limped off with a left knee problem, and Armfield was substituted into the action. Entering time-on, Rhys Palmer snapped another major for the Giants to restore their 14-point advantage, and the Blues couldn’t make any more inroads before the siren.
During the last break, an angry Carlton coach Mick Malthouse demanded more from his team. Armfield delivered when he steered through a team-lifter from 50 metres inside the first two minutes of the last quarter, and at that point Blues fans were praying that their team could get on a roll. But it was GWS that responded best, with three unanswered majors that should have been four – had their defender Heath Shaw not missed a sitter when he ran into an open goal after 13 minutes. With half the quarter elapsed, the Giants were back in front by 23 points and showing a new maturity as they slowed the play and bottled the game up.
With 23 minutes gone, a chain of passes from Armfield to Everitt to Brock McLean brought up the Blues twelfth major, followed by Waite’s handpass to Menzel for another. GWS had been reined in to margin of 13 points, but they kept their cool, and with Mumford still on top in the ruck, they hung on grimly. There was 43 seconds left on the clock when Menzel won a free-kick and goaled, leaving Carlton eight points short and with another season in tatters.
Mitch Robinson (31 possessions (14 contested) 9 marks, 10 clearances) Bryce Gibbs (28 possessions (11 contested) 4 marks, 6 clearances) and Chris Judd (20 disposals (14 contested) 5 tackles, 7 clearances) were best in defeat for the Blues, along with Ed Curnow and Troy Menzel. Continuing his breakout season, Sam Rowe stuck to his task after half-time, and kept an emerging star in Patton to two goals for the match.
Subs: Dennis Armfield replaced Simon White just before ¾ time.
|B:||43 Simon White||40 Michael Jamison (DVC)||1 Andrew Walker|
|HB:||6 Kade Simpson (VC)||17 Sam Rowe||42 Zach Tuohy|
|C:||35 Ed Curnow||5 Chris Judd||39 Dale Thomas|
|HF:||13 Chris Yarran||41 Levi Casboult||2 Troy Menzel|
|F:||33 Andrejs Everitt||30 Jarrad Waite||14 Brock McLean|
|Ruck:||11 Robert Warnock||4 Bryce Gibbs||44 Andrew Carrazzo (A/C)|
|Interchange:||12 Mitch Robinson||15 Sam Docherty||23 Lachlan Henderson|
|Substitute:||27 Dennis Armfield|
|Emergencies:||3 Marc Murphy (captain)||32 Nick Graham||45 Blaine Johnson|
*- Dennis Armfield replaced Marc Murphy in the selected side, taking over from Brock McLean as substitute.
* Chris Yarran started as a loose man in defence.
MilestonesInteresting Fact: This was the smallest crowd to attend a Carlton game in over 60 years - since round 7, 1953 when 8,500 saw the Blues defeat Hawthorn at Princes Park.
Brownlow Votes3. Callan Ward, GWS
2. Shane Mumford, GWS
1. Mitch Robinson, Carlton
Best & Fairest VotesMitch Robinson 9, Troy Menzel 5, Bryce Gibbs 4, Andrew Walker 4, Brock McLean 3,
Round 13 | Round 15