Western Bulldogs win by 30 points
The 4-2 Demons had needed comeback wins in their last two games but were surprised after starting warm favourites against the 2-4 Bulldogs. A raft of injuries didn't help, including to Daniel Ward (knee), Brad Green (severely bruised arm), Matthew Collins (knee), Peter Walsh (hamstring), Jeff White (shin) and David Neitz (eye)), but they were also helped by inaccurate kicking by the Dogs that kept the margin to 12 at half time. Brad Johnson was the visitors' chief offender, with booting 1.5 and an out-on-the-full before half time. One of the injuries was self-inflicted, with Neitz's impaired vision coming after being poked in the eye by a high five gone wrong from Russell Robertson in the first quarter. Neitz didn't kick a goal until the last quarter, with only his second kick of the night.
The Bulldogs recovered their accuracy in the third quarter, and a 5.1 term saw them 26 points in front at the last change. Melbourne rallied, and the margin was still under four goals after 10 minutes before the fresher side pulled away. Melbourne had lost Walsh and Collins on either side of half time, and despite booting goals with all six of their second half scoring shots they were overrun. It was Melbourne's sixth consecutive loss to the Dogs, who they hadn't beaten since the club changed their name from Footscray. It left Neale Daniher 0-4 coaching against Terry Wallace.
Best were Robertson, McDonald and Woewodin. David Schwarz was reported for striking but the charge was withdrawn.
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AFANA News 2001