As it happened AFL 2021 Round 2: Demons beat Saints in Spud’s Game while Shiel injured in Dons’ loss
That’s a wrap from me for tonight but thanks for joining us on our Saturday AFL live blog.
It was so good to see Buddy Franklin back and great to see Melbourne starting 2-0 and bringing all their talent together.
We will be back tomorrow with our Sunday live blog and I’ll look forward to joining you next weekend.
Please keep checking in with The Age and SMH for all your footy news and I hope you all have a wonderful evening.
Bye for now.
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Gold Coast has had a big win over the Kangaroos on the Gold Coast tonight.
The Suns may be without star playmaker Matt Rowell but they were switched on from the outset and made sure the Kangaroos were never truly in the game.
Noah Anderson continued to impress in his second season with 35 disposals while Brandon Ellis (33), Jack Bowes (31) and Touk Miller (31) all had big nights.
The Kangaroos have a lot to work on but one positive is first-year midfielder Tom Powell showed some good touches among his 16 possessions.
Margin a little bit flattering?
“It was, there is no doubt about it. Our ability to use the ball which has been a strength of ours wasn’t up to scratch.” Rattern said.
“We missed too many easy options and I think when we were under pressure, we tried to manufacture something. That fuelled some of the scoring. That was really disappointing.”
What do you put that down to?
”It was a bit unlike us,” Rattern said.
“Everyone makes mistakes but it is how many we made them and it was the ones that were out and it was the ones that were out, we just made a blue. That’s not been a trait of ours.
“Hopefully it doesn’t become a trend because it’s part of our brand and what we do. That was disappointing tonight. Especially on a night when it was Spud’s night, the tribute
“We had our moments there but we fell away in the second half.”
What happened to Jimmy Webster?
“He took a knock on the head. We suspected maybe a crack in the jaw and he had a concussion test as well and I’m not sure if he failed that or not but the Doc was worried about the crack. He took him off.
“He got hit in the head. It was play on. He went down, he has just come off the bench. It was an accident. Wrong spot at the wrong time.”
Does a score of 12.19 leave you frustrated or happy to get the win?
“Happy to get the win. It is a good problem to have - if you’re winning and kicking 31 scoring shots.
“It’s something we work on hard. It is not a trend for us to be that inaccurate. Four rushed. It comes back to 12-15. It is an area we work on a lot.
“It’s one we’ll continue to get better at but we’re rapt to get the win. It is an important night for our footy club in terms of starting to build some momentum and also starting to build some consistency in how we play. That’s the most important thing.”
How pleased were you with your ability to shift if momentum when St Kilda got on a run midway through the second?
“That was probably one of the more pleasing aspects of our game. To have the momentum against us, they kicked five out of the last six through the second quarter there.
“To arrest that momentum is something we’ve worked hard on in building the behaviours that are going to do that within a game, within a quarter.
“I thought the boys were outstanding. They were speaking about it on the bench. They certainly went back to what they knew and got the game back on our terms.”
They got within nine points when Steele kicked a couple of goals but you managed to break it open again.
“You’re going to get challenged in AFL footy. It is going to be like that,” Goodwin said.
“Especially with 30-minute quarters. It is going to be the teams that can create momentum but also arrest it. It is going to happen to every team.
“It is a good position to be in, to be able to do that so far. We’re learning. We’ll learn from it, understand why that takes place and how we maintain it and get it done more often than not.”
What did you think of Kysaiah Pickett?
“I took my young lad to the footy a lot and used to watch Cyril Rioli,” Goodwin said.
“That’s what the Melbourne supporters would love about Kozzy. You sit on the sidelines as coach and you love watching him play. He’s still got a lot to learn and get better at but he a good player.
He looks fitter, he looks in better shape. He obviously worked really hard while he was away?
“He worked incredibly hard. He had a clear program that was set by Burgo and the team when he went back to Adelaide. He was very diligent. He did F45 every morning for three weeks. He trained three times a week with Woodville West Torrens.
“He came back, embraced the VFL. Played a game and a half. Full credit to Kozzy. He’s done an extraordinary job to deal with what he went through but also to come out and perform the way he has.
“He has got that raw talent, speed and excitement.“
What’s his next step? How does he get better?
“Keep doing the basics well. There is no secret to becoming a good player. Doing it week after week, getting it done time after time. He’s still got enormous growth in him. By no means a finished product yet.”
Clayton Oliver and Max Gawn put on a midfield masterclass and Kysaiah Pickett emerged as a potential star of the competition to help Melbourne defeat an undermanned St Kilda at Marvel Stadium in a match that served as a fitting tribute to former St Kilda great Danny Frawley.
Spud would not have liked seeing his beloved Saints overwhelmed in the second half but he would have approved of the occasion as ‘Spud’s Game: Time 2 Talk’ ebbed and flowed due to momentum shifts.
The match started with an immediate goal when Jack Viney kicked accurately from the opening bounce via a handball from ball magnet Oliver.
Click here to read the story.
On Melbourne’s bouncing back after St Kilda took the lead:
“I think the response from everyone in the midfield in the second quarter, when we were getting beaten or down by 16, the fight from Clayton Oliver, Angus Brayshaw, Max Gawn, Tom Sparrow, so many guys that went through there,” Petracca said.
“The amount of people is giving guys like myself and Clayton fresher times and I’ve got more energy.”
On James Jordon:
“He is a ripper,” Petracca said.
“His first two years, he was slowly developing. It is a hard midfield to crack but he has slotted so well.
“Guys like him and Tom Sparrow play their role, it is not about possession, it is about coming in, doing the hard things. Both their games have been unbelievable.”
On Kysaiah Pickett:
“He is going to have a million highlights,” Petracca said.
“He is an absolute star.
“He is an absolute freak. Jordan Lewis said midway through pre-season, he has the potential to be the next Cyril.
“He is only turning 20 this year. He’s got to keep getting over the contest, getting to the drop of ball, from there, he’s going to be fine.“
The Demons are now 2-0 after defeating St Kilda in Spud’s Game tonight and it’s another sign that Simon Goodwin’s young men might now be coming of age.
This was a big night for both clubs with the extra emotion of celebrating the life of Danny Frawley and the need for those struggling to speak up and get help.
Everything has gone to plan for Melbourne after two rounds and now the trick for the Demons will be to keep this great form going.
“The Saints are a top six team, they won a final last year,” Demons ruckman Max Gawn said.
“We played well against Freo at the MCG, we had to back up against Saints. Freo meant nothing, if we didn’t back it up tonight.
“Such a great cause in Spud’s Game. Angus Brayshaw, it has cut him deep with his girlfriend Danielle [Frawley’s daughter].
“It was good to get a great crowd and raise money for a good cause.”
Clayton Oliver had 37 touches and Christian Petracca had 30 of his own while up forward Tom McDonald came good in the final term once again kicking two crucial goals while Jack Viney had two goals and Kysaiah Pickett’s two stunning goals added further excitement.
There is something special about the Demons but whether that is turned into anything memorable will rest with those in the red and the blue.
For the Saints, they have some work to do but their spirit is still strong.
The Saints have seen their hopes fade in the last few minutes with Zak Jones’ running attempt at goal and Max King’s shot from distance both missed and that looks to be it with the game now tightening up.
Demons lead 91-72 with two minutes to play.
Jack Higgins had snapped a goal for the Saints and given his side just a little hope of a comeback despite how fast the clock is ticking.
Demons lead 90-71 with eight minutes to play.
Jayden Hunt won a crucial ball in the middle and his long kick found Tom McDonald who had been grabbed on the jumper by a Saints defender.
McDonald went back and kicked a goal. It could be the one that seals this win but you can’t rule out St Kilda, they don’t give up.
Dees lead 90-65 with nine minutes to play.