|Date: Sat 18 August 2007, 2:10pm||Result: Loss by 10pts|
|Umpires: Farmer, Kennedy, Jeffery||Crowd: 48,638|
|Goalkickers: Fisher 4; Betts, Lappin 2; Bannister, Carrazzo, Jackson, Murphy, Ó hAilpín, Saddington, Walker, Whitnall|
|Reports: Nil||Injuries: Russell (adductor), replaced in selected side by Adam Bentick; Fevola (groin)|
Game ReviewThis was the last game between these two proud rivals with Kevin Sheedy at the helm of the Bombers. Sheedy's overall coaching record against Carlton would end up in his favour regardless of the result, yet with some of his questionable team selections and the alleged lure of the #1 draft pick for Carlton, the build up to this match was unusual, to say the least.
The opening half belonged to Carlton and their hard running and rebound from defence was first class. Third gamer Michael Jamison was given the responsibility of matching up on Matthew Lloyd and Bryce Gibbs marked James Hird. Neither looked out of place on their more experienced opponents. As a team, Carlton's effort was everything caretaker coach Brett Ratten could have asked for, and even though there were a few wasteful shots in front of goal Carlton outscored the Bombers in both terms to go in to the main break with a 23 point lead. Jarrad Waite and Heath Scotland, both playing off half-back, were heading the possession tally at the main change, highlighting Carlton's dominance over Essendon's forwards.
The second half turned out to be a great showpiece for the game. It was exciting, tough contested football which culminated with four lead changes in the final term. Essendon came out strongly in the third quarter and took the lead with a freakish back-heeled goal from Matthew Lloyd with the last kick of the quarter. Carlton showed their grit and resolve by scoring the first goal of the fourth quarter to win back the lead. The game continued to be neck and neck with Essendon getting their noses in front by just over a goal. The Blues, through more hard running, kicked consecutive goals to wrestle back scoreboard superiority. Not to be out done, and with finals still a remote chance, Essendon were good enough to get the lead back and closed out the game with the ball bottled up in their forward 50 and a late goal to clinch the game with just a few moments of playing time remaining.
Once again for Brett Ratten's men the team was good enough to put themselves in a winning position, but just could not close out the game. Brad Fisher topped the goal kicking with a career-high four, while Brendan Fevola had a poor first half and was kept goal-less for the game. He started the second half on the bench in his tracksuit with concerns over his groin, but was able to get back on the field. Although he did some good team things, he was clearly struggling with his fitness and post match reports suggested he would miss the remaining two games of the year through injury. Andrew Carrazzo quietly accumulated 33 touches to top the possessions with Ryan Houlihan, also on 33. Heath Scotland and Adam Bentick, a late inclusion for Jordan Russell, both played well for 31 touches while Andrew Walker picked up a career-high 31 disposals as well. Lance Whitnall, playing his first game since Round 12, appeared in great physical condition and had some effect for the Blues without being a standout. Even though Lloyd ended up with six goals, young Jamison performed well for Carlton playing on the Bomber front runner all game and continues to show great promise.
Whether it was the run of close losses, Ratten's coaching or rapport with the players, or something else entirely, Brett Ratten was appointed as Coach of the Carlton Football Club on the Monday following the game.
As a sad post-script to this match, Matthew Lappin would be unable to play in both Rounds 21 and 22 owing to a back complaint, and would retire from the game.
|B:||40 Michael Jamison||9 Jason Saddington||33 Ryan Houlihan|
|HB:||6 Kade Simpson||30 Jarrad Waite||18 Paul Bower|
|C:||13 Luke Blackwell||29 Heath Scotland||38 Ryan Jackson|
|HF:||12 Matthew Lappin||8 Lance Whitnall (c)||14 Brad Fisher|
|F:||19 Eddie Betts||25 Brendan Fevola||17 Setanta Ó hAilpín|
|Ruck:||11 Cain Ackland||31 Jordan Bannister||44 Andrew Carrazzo|
|Interchange:||4 Bryce Gibbs||3 Marc Murphy||7 Adam Bentick*|
|1 Andrew Walker|
|Emg:||21 Mark Austin, 7 Adam Bentick*, 22 Shaun Hampson|
|In:||Matthew Lappin, Lance Whitnall, Adam Bentick|
|Out:||Shaun Grigg, Bret Thornton, Jordan Russell (all injured)|
NB * Bentick was a late change for Russell
Milestones / FactsLast games: Matthew Lappin, Luke Blackwell
Interesting fact: Carlton registered 427 possessions during this game, their highest number on record to date. Essendon had 407 possessions.
Interesting fact: Brett Ratten was confirmed as Coach of Carlton after this loss, his fourth close loss as Caretaker Coach.
Brownlow Votes3. Heath Scotland, Carlton
2. Jay Nash, Essendon
1. Jarrad Waite, Carlton
Best and Fairest VotesBrad Fisher 24, Heath Scotland 21, Jarrad Waite 12, Eddie Betts, Adam Bentick 6, Andrew Walker 3, Kade Simpson 2, Ryan Houlihan 1
Round 19 | Round 21