Melbourne win by 55 points
Melbourne's 1000th VFL, which coincidently saw them unfurling the 1959 premiership flag, match bucked a trend which had seen them, despite having dominated most of the previous decade, win just five of their last ten opening day matches.
Despite the big win it was far from a vintage performance and several of the Demons were down on their form. Their easy win could be better attributed to North's poor forward play ruining the hard work of their rucks and superior centre line, and to their defence allowing the weak Demon forward line to kick a winning score.
Five goals down at half time the Kangaroos players showed a brief burst of form in the third quarter where they kicked 2.4 in 12 minutes to get within 13 points, but from there they tired and never seriously threatened to challenge for the four points. Despite several of their players turning in ordinary performances Melbourne still won easily.
Best were Adams, Jones and Laidlaw. McLean (bruised shoulder) was replaced by Milner in the third quarter, and Bob Johnson by Massey in the last quarter after suffering cramp.
Melbourne 12.12 d. North Melbourne 8.18
Goals - Nilsson 3, Eastgate 2, Olsen 2, Sheppard 2, Breen 2, Clarke 1
Best - Turner, Breen, Sheppard
Under 19s (played Saturday 16 April)
Melbourne 9.17.71 d. North Melbourne 9.13.67
Goals - Murdock 3, Leahy 2, Rolfe 2, Groves 1, Carroll 1
Best - Murdock, Rolfe, Groves