Sydney’s Greater West demolished Adelaide to bring their season to life, rolling atop the Crows at the Adelaide Oval on Saturday afternoon, 17.11 (113) to 8.6 (54).
The Giants dominated the first half to decide the outcome, with starring roles from Toby Greene, Josh Kelly and Tom Green.
Adelaide travel to Victoria to take on Carlton in the seventh round, while the Giants host a cracking Geelong side.
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QUARTERLY DISTRICT SUMMARY
Harry Schoenberg (Adelaide) and Matt de Boer (GWS) have been named medical replacements.
Toby Greene took a brilliant pack mark and quickly broke really to put the Giants on the board first in the opening two minutes.
A good challenged mark at Braydon Preuss led to a Jesse Hogan goal soon after as the Giants got off to a flying start.
All that stopped the Giants from taking a bigger lead in the first term was imprecision, with Hogan and Greene missing a few chances in front of goal.
Lachie Whitfield joined in on the Giants’ scoring bonanza, dribbling his first goal of the season as David King said the Crows had to ‘wake up’ or risk a blowout.
It took a strong attack on the ball and a resulting free kick for Ned McHenry to finally get the Crows their first goal of the afternoon.
The Giants entered the quarter with a 27-point lead.
Adelaide’s woes continued to start the second term, with Stephen Coniglio netting a long-range saved shot before another bit of genius from Greene resulted in his second goal.
Tom Green showed incredible composure in traffic to set Greene up for another, before the Crows finally responded via a goal to Ben Keays after a difficult spell.
The resistance was short-lived, however, as the Giants once again easily got rid of the Crows in the middle of the field.
Luckily for the Crows, the halftime siren came before the Giants could inflict even more pain on their opponents, entering the main break with a 59-point lead.
It took five minutes in the second half for the first goal to arrive, this one Coniglio’s third of the afternoon, and then the game opened up again, with the Giants ‘playing’ with the Crows, frequently finding space and surpassing their opponents.
Things got even worse for the Crows when alternate captain Brodie Smith suffered a concussion after a high-flying mark, which was followed by a nasty landing that hit his head.
Play was stopped immediately as Smith was stretched out.
“Spectacular and sickening in one move for the acting captain,” Kelli Underwood said on Fox Footy.
After play was stopped to stretch Smith, the Crows appeared to have regained their composure around the floor, blocking the ball in their front half for much of the remaining quarter to at least gain some momentum in the final change. despite trailing 72 points. .
Consecutive goals to start the fourth term gave even more momentum to the Crows, who went on to close out the game despite the result beyond doubt.
3) WINNING CURES ALL DISEASES
The pressure gauge is rising incredibly quickly in the AFL world, but it can be reduced just as suddenly with a win.
Leon Cameron’s papers were dabbed ahead of the seventh round, but within an hour the tide had turned significantly in his favour.
It was a dominant first half for the Giants and it was as good as they have played in recent memory, with Dermott Brereton calling it the best they’ve watched since the 2019 Grand Final run.
Josh Kelly told Fox Footy after the game that the pressure on Cameron was just external noise – something David King agreed would remain the case if they put on more performances like this.
“That’s the answer if you want to stop the outside noise – start winning. Winning heals everything, it masks all the problems you have internally, whether it’s game plan or personnel,” a- he declared.
“This dominating performance is exactly what Leon Cameron needed right now. The 59 point win was emphatic, the method was brutal, the forward line was running 17 points inside 50, I can’t remember the last time the Giants did that.
“They held Adelaide to just three marks inside 50 so their back six was brilliant even without Phil Davis.
“Their midfield was just angry in that first half, led by Tom Green who is on his way to superstar status in the competition.”
It’s the perfect tonic for Cameron and the club and sets up a fascinating clash against Geelong next week.
2) THE GREEN/E MACHINE STARTS UP
Dermott Brereton put him on the radar before the game – Toby Greene would rebound.
Coming back from a six-game ban last week, Greene looked well below his winning record despite a relatively good stat sheet at the end of the loss to St Kilda.
Saturday against the Crows, however, Greene really came back.
“He looked disconnected last week, but he’s capable of the X factor,” Brereton said before the game.
“The best thing for Toby is that their striker who is the best at reading the incoming ball is back today – Jesse Hogan.
“It will take a lot of heat out of Toby and he will be able to handle himself in this situation. I think he is going to be a big handful.
A superb pack mark in the opening minutes of the game was followed by a clean snap and goal and from then on a huge comeback was never in doubt.
His trusty assistant Tom Green was another who dominated in the first half as the game was there to be won.
“That boy is a star. If they string together the wins, he’s got 20+ votes in the Brownlow. He’s so good at this point,” Brereton said.
David King agreed, adding: “He’s the number one 21-and-under player, Tom Green. He’s a brute at punting and in the competition’s top 15 for contested possessions.
It was a chilling display from the Giants stars of the quality of their clicks.
1) THE CROWS COLLAPSE ON THE EARTH
No marks inside 50 for a half and change. If you weren’t looking at the scoreboard, that stat alone would explain the Giants’ sheer dominance on Saturday afternoon.
Coach Matthew Nicks was perhaps as surprised as anyone at Adelaide Oval at half-time, judging by his comments to Fox Footy.
“They already did this to us 12 months ago,” he said, referring to last year’s 67-point loss at the same venue.
“We thought we learned more and unfortunately we didn’t so we have a bit of work to do now…we’ll be asking our mediums to step up. We’re taking a bit of a lesson right now .
Things turned around in the second half, but it was far too late to salvage anything of significance.
Carlton next week will be a fascinating test for the Crows.
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