|Date:||2.40 pm, Sunday, 16 May, 2010|
|Result:||Won by 26 points|
|Goalkickers:||S. O’hAilpin, M. Kreuzer (3), R. Houlihan, J. Waite, C. Yarran (2), A. Carrazzo, J. Garlett, J. Simpson, C. Judd, H. Scotland (1)|
|Reports:||J. Waite (striking on J. Davenport)|
|Umpires:||J. Armstrong, S. Hay, S. Ryan|
|Injuries:||K. Lucas (hamstring), S. White (shoulder)|
Game ReviewWho says Adelaide isn’t a lovely place to visit? The Blues enjoyed their round four visit so much they returned for another trip in round eight, this time matched against the Power of Port. It was to be an important game for both sides, separated by a solitary rung on the ladder, each trying to establish themselves in the eight and lay the foundations for the season ahead.
It had been a relatively quiet night at the selection table with Carlton adding Steven Browne, Lachie Henderson and Mitch Robinson to the squad that pumped the Saints earlier in the week. When the 22 was finalised on Friday afternoon there had been no change and, of the emergencies, only Steven Browne travelled with the team to Adelaide.
You sometimes get a feeling for how a team is going to perform by how they respond in the opening minutes of a game. If you’d made your call based on the opening few minutes of this one you would have been thinking how far Port. The Blues struggled to get their hands on the pill and when they did they looked flat, untidy and disorganised. The first few scores were all at Port’s end and it was no small relief they were only behinds. It took over ten minutes before Setanta O’hAilpin dragged in a wonderful contested mark and kicked truly for the first major in the game to give the Blues an unlikely (undeserved) lead. The game swung into some kind of rhythm from that point and it went goal for goal for the remainder of the term. The lead changed seven times during the quarter with the Blues taking a slender four point advantage to the break.
The second started with a similar flurry of activity at Port’s end, though this time there was no let off for the Blues. Port Adelaide slammed on three goals in five minutes to take ascendency in the game and open up a handy 15 point break. Too few of the Blues were playing at the level that had made them seem so invincible against the Saints six days earlier. Kade Simpson was one who could hold his head high, possibly the Blues most consistent performer this season, along with captain reliable Chris Judd. Together with Andrew Carrazzo they were doing everything in their power to keep the Blues in touch. And the worm did start to turn. Goals to Ryan Houlihan, Judd, another to O’hAilpin and Jarrad Waite edged the Blues in front late in the term only to see the lead slip at the death-knock. A Port goal in the shadows of half time saw them take a single point advantage to the sheds.
The short-break, an interstate trip and the absence of Kane Lucas since the first quarter with hamstring problems all loomed as likely excuses when the game started to slip from the Blues grasp during the third term. After Chris Yarran got the Blues off to a positive start with a goal inside two minutes, things began to turn sour. With turnovers creeping in and a couple of undisciplined acts leading to 50 metre penalties the pendulum swung back Port’s way and their four unanswered goals made it look a daunting task. Big hearted Matthew Kreuzer turned crumber to get one back for the Blues against the run of play, but Port responded all too quickly. Late in the quarter Houlihan snagged his second to reduce it to less than two goals, but despite much activity in the Carlton forward fifty resulting in several failed attempts, Port held firm at nine points.
Brett Ratten’s men clearly got the message at the three quarter time huddle as they took something special from his address out onto the ground. Their intensity lifted a notch (perhaps two), clearances were won, runners broke free and most importantly goals rained. Port’s lead disappeared in less than two minutes with goals to O’hAilpin (his third) and Heath Scotland, and two more came in quick succession from the boots of Kreuzer and Waite. It took almost 16 minutes for Port to respond and draw breath. The game was still well and truly alive when that happened but the all important momentum was with the Blues. Yarran’s second a few minutes later gave Carlton breathing space with a 19 point lead, but it wasn’t until the tireless Kreuzer slotted his third during the 27th minute that the game was sealed.
This courageous come-from-behind victory showed that the young Blues were starting to develop some self-belief to go with all that potential on the list. At 5-3 with their fourth win in five weeks, comprising both of last year’s grand finalists and both South Australian teams at home, the Blues were well placed in fifth position, when many pundits had predicted a far gloomier predicament at this stage of the season.
|B:||32 Bret Thornton||40 Michael Jamison||45 Aaron Joseph|
|HB:||27 Dennis Armfield||2 Jordan Russell||4 Bryce Gibbs|
|C:||6 Kade Simpson||5 Chris Judd (c)||24 Kane Lucas|
|HF:||33 Ryan Houlihan||30 Jarrad Waite||13 Chris Yarran|
|F:||38 Jeffery Garlett||17 Setanta Ó hAilpín||19 Eddie Betts|
|Ruck:||8 Matthew Kreuzer||29 Heath Scotland||44 Andrew Carrazzo|
|Interchange:||3 Marc Murphy||9 Chris Johnson||39 Sam Jacobs|
|43 Simon White|
|Emg:||15 Steven Browne, 12 Mitch Robinson, 23 Lachlan Henderson|
Milestones50 Goals : Setanta Ó hAilpín
Winning Streaks : This was Carlton's 4th consecutive win over Port Adelaide.
Interesting Fact : This was Carlton's 100th Interstate match.
Brownlow Votes3. ((Judd's Brownlow|Chris Judd, Carlton
2. Kade Simpson, Carlton
1. Travis Boak, Port Power
Best & Fairest Votes40 Kade Simpson, 39 Dennis Armfield, Chris Judd, 36 Andrew Carrazzo, Matthew Kreuzer, 33 Bryce Gibbs, 26 Jordan Russell, 23 Setanta O’hAilpin, 12 Michael Jamison
Round 7 | Round 9