Richmond started a lot better against Hawthorn on Friday night, kicking the opening three goals. The Tiger faithful were daring to dream that just maybe this was the start of a Friday night upset, but it wasn’t to be. For all that the Tigers bright start promised, it became a flicker throughout and ultimately wasn’t enough to curtail the Hawks.
It was very much a game of crazy momentum swings – the Tigers kicked the first three goals in seven minutes; football reminiscent of the second half of last season. Hawthorn responded with the next six, Richmond the next three and the Hawks the next three. The Tigers were full of vim and vigour in the second half after kicking four goals before the Hawks got the next six to take a 28 point lead and the game, eight minutes into the last quarter.
The final quarter saw the Hawks kick 9.2 to the Tigers 3.1 – it was a damning conclusion to a game Richmond had talked about so positively and appeared to have set itself for. It was a Richmond side without Alex Rance, Trent Cotchin, Dylan Grimes and Kane Lambert that dominated contested ball and clearances in the first half, but they seemingly reverted back to bad habits, complete with too many costly turnovers. It was the Hawks’ return of their outside dominance that saved them. Hawthorn had 73 more uncontested possessions, 45 more uncontested marks and 28 more handball receives.
Richmond now sits 1-6 after seven rounds with Sydney on the horizon with their chance for a late season revival rapidly slipping from the Tigers grasp. Whilst external forces say Richmond won’t play finals and that this must be their primary concern; that is actually not Richmond’s focus. Football is played on a week-by-week basis and as a result the Tigers are just simply looking to win another game to kick start potential momentum.
Final Score: Haw 21.10.136 to Rich 13.12.90.
TOP 3 TIGERS:
1. ANTHONY MILES: The industrious midfielder, who was best on ground the last time these two teams met, did it again on Friday night. He finished with 24 touches (12 contested), five intercepts, seven clearances, seven tackles, 15 pressure acts, 10 score involvements and he also kicked two sensational goals of his own.
2. DUSTIN MARTIN: Returned to form and was again one of the best against the Hawks, akin to the two teams’ last meeting. He finished with 28 touches (15 contested), six clearances, seven tackles, 16 pressure acts and four score involvements.
3. NICK VLASTUIN: The defender returned from injury and played as a midfielder against the Hawks. He finished with 16 touches (eight contested), five clearances, six tackles, 12 pressure acts, six score involvements and he also kicked the opening goal of the game.
What were your thoughts on the game?