St Kilda Saints – 13.12 (90)
Essendon Bombers – 10.11 (71)
St Kilda for the first time this year have been properly tested by someone, they came through with a pass mark and a 3 goal victory but no doubt Ross Lyon will have seen plenty that needs working on.
This game had everything I love about football; A loud passionate crowd, A well drilled team, an exciting team and seriously hard contests. In the first quarter the Saints looked untouchable from my seat at ContestedFooty Stadium (also known as Etihad amongst other names) but the Bombers showed a real desire to work hard and attack hard, which made it a great spectacle.
St Kilda is still motoring along nicely but based on this game the Bombers will have some seriously good games.
Turning points of the match
St Kilda exploded out of the blocks and set up a game defining lead in the first quarter. The Bombers worked hard to real them in during the second and third quarters, in fact in the last quarter they looked like they may run all over the Saints until Lloyd gave away a holding free kick in a marking contest (one that he had won cold) and the Saints took it up the other end and kicked a goal that took just enough wind out of the Essendon sails and kicked away to win by 3 goals.
Key Players for St Kilda
Justin Koschitzke– Worked hard all night, imposed himself on the match and kicked straight. Koschitzke had stats of 4 goals 2 and 8 marks (4 contested) by game’s end.
Lenny Hayes– Went head to head with Jobe Watson and both played good games. Hayes attack on the footy and the man with it remains one of the best in the AFL for mine. Lenny’s stats read 33 touches, 5 clearances and 9 tackles by game’s end.
James Gwilt- For mine one of the better Saints players all night, Gwilt is really starting to find his feet at AFL level. He has a beautiful kick, a strong body and clean hands picking up the ball. He only had the 13 touches but they included 3 goal assists and he adds another dimension to the St Kilda forward line.
Key Players for Essendon
Jobe Watson– As above went head to head with Hayes; tellingly had 18 out of his 39 possessions were contested. Jobe also accumulated 6 tackles when he wasn’t getting leather poisoning.
Courtenay Dempsey– Ran hard all day, created a lot of play and was rewarded with great stats of 27 touches and a goal, took 5 bounces on his way as well.
Musings from the match
• Nice big crowd for a Sunday twilight match (45k)
• Essendon are seriously hard to stifle, they will take risks and run all day
• Some of St Kilda’s lesser lights struggled. Dawson, Blake, King and Jones all made mistakes that Geelong may of punished more than the Bombers.
• Brendon Goddard needs to work harder, often wasn’t picking up his man which made it easy for the bombers to run the ball. Goddard flashes in and out of the game too much for mine.
• Run is the way to get through a zone and Ben isn’t wrong about the Bombers midfield.
• St Kilda looked to be in cruise control at time
• Thought the Essendon supporters were fantastic, didn’t whine, were humorous and good sports, if only more supporters (including my own club) were like them.
• Mathew Lloyd performed one of the most selfish acts I have seen from a Bombers player, however he did kick the goal so he escapes most of his critics this time. He took a mark 50-out, saw a player on his own about 30 out and went back for the shot, shocking.
St Kilda players didn’t deliver like they normally do but a couple in Lenny Hayes and Justin Koschitzke scored pretty well. I’m considering getting on Gwilt as a blue chip player I think is going to hit some form.
Look out for Davey and his possible suspension for a stupid bump on Dal Santo. Dempsey and Dyson had fantastic games, if you think they can keep it up get on them now.