Updated: Jul 19, 2020
Effectively a second Round 1, Round 2 provided the type of football and results typical of Round 1. Games were scrappy at times, teams looked tanked early, and a heavyweight was flogged. It was brilliant! What about the draw at the G on Thursday night, hard to argue those two teams won’t be playing on the grandest stage of them all in late October this year.
What a great game it was, Bombers and the Swans
For mine, the Game of the round, the mighty Bombers defeating the Swans by 6 points. Essendon and Sydney continued their tradition of 1 goal cliffhangers. When Darcy Parish, with his 13 last quarter disposals, converted from the pocket with 70 seconds remaining, Essendon's 7 point lead looked like a winning margin. Undaunted, the Swans won a clearance and created a scoring opportunity. Swooping on the ball, James Rowbottom's 50m strike looked a goal the entire journey, only to hit the bottom of the post. After leading all-day, 103+ minutes, the Don’s closed the last minute out well enough to begin their season 2-0. Make sure you watch the highlights of this game! Devon Smith and Lewis Taylor both submitted early nominations for the goal of the year. Devon Smith’s running snap from the pocket, on the wrong side for a right-footer was so good it appeared he was the only who knew it had gone through.
Perhaps the feel good moment of the week was the Gold Coast Suns, what happened there? 44 point demolition job on the West Coast Eagles, yikes! 44 points. Yes, don’t adjust your glasses, that is correct. There might not be a bigger upset all year! Gold Coast, led by the league's newest superstar Matt Rowell, seemed to handled the dewy conditions lightyears better than the Eagles. Every bit as physical as their much more highly fancied opposition and cleaner on the ball. This was no fluke, a good win! Sam Day, looking like a star again after that horrific hip injury, had his best day for the club. A talented list we know, the Sun’s look to have come along physically during the 12 week lay off. A competitive Gold Coast will have dramatic repercussions on the final ladder. It may have already cost the West Coast a Top 4 finish.
The ‘oh no’ moment of the week might be Saints & Bulldogs clash. Wow. Two offseason champions squared off after equally shocking Round 1 defeats. Expecting a dour affair, two teams fighting desperately to avoid an 0-2 start. Brilliant, the Saints played a superb game of football, kicking 14 goals to hammer a tame Western Bulldog outfit. Fox Footy showed Luke Beveridge digging into his allotment of sprays for the season at half-time. There was no response. Where to for the Bulldogs?. Tipped by a few to play a major part in season 2020, they play GWS, Sydney, and North in the next few weeks. Remarkably quickly, the Bulldogs 2020 could spiral out of control before they blink.
Around the other grounds, Adelaide confirmed what we all suspected, a long season awaits. Port Adelaide on the other hand showed they can play with an intensity you would expect during a showdown. With no one in attendance, their young superstars played with energy and zest. Holding a percentage of 290%, they may as well have three wins on the board. Port can set sails now towards a Top 4 berth. Geelong took a step towards ending suggestions their record at home is somewhat overstated, absolutely destroying the Hawks, that was nasty.
Dees almost let a handy slip
Carlton and Melbourne was everything we expected to see out of the Saints and Bulldogs match up. The Dee’s did their best to throw away a 5-goal lead. Robbed, by themselves, Carlton will be filthy to have lost this by a point. Kicking 5 behinds in the last quarter, Carlton handed the Demons their first 4 points of the season. Elsewhere, North and the Lions got the job done in hard fought contests.
Bring on Round 3, this shit is heating up!