St. Kilda win by 53 points
Melbourne went in as the media's pick despite their tight loss to Essendon the week before. Five of six "Age" tipsters thought that their 17 point loss at Windy Hill was a better form indicator than the Saints battling 17 point win over South Melbourne. St. Kilda were struggling for goals and the Demons defence had played well so far.
Melbourne were without the injured Stan Alves who was out with a shoulder injury, and ruckman Carl Ditterich who was suspended. Wayne Delmenico, Frank Giampaolo and Kim Smith were all dropped, replaced by Ray Biffin, Ted Carroll and the returning Des Campbell who had not played since 1970.
The Saints, however, found five goals from Barry Breen and four from George Young en route to a big victory. Melbourne desperately missed Ditterich and Alves and never got into the game. Robert Flower was knocked out in a behind the play incident when struck by Robert Muir.
Bob Skilton fumed that it was, “the worst performance since I’ve been coach. That's as bad as we can go. There is no way to get worse.”
Wells, Hardeman and Biffin were best for Melbourne. Ross Brewer was replaced by Giampaolo at half time after suffering a back injury. Clark (hamstring) was replaced by Delmenico in the third quarter.
Melbourne 14.14 d. St Kilda 13.7
Goals - Smith 4, Sparks 3, Fitzsimmons 2, Keays 2, Owen 1, Molloy 1, Wood 1
Best - Keays, Molloy, Sparks
St Kilda 8.11 d. Melbourne 5.12
Goals - Campbell 2, Walley 2, Carson 1
Best - Delaney, Bickford, Woods