Rampaging Dogs secure grand final berth
THE Western Bulldogs have set up a mouth-watering grand final with Melbourne in a fortnight’s time after they too proved a class above, smashing Port Adelaide by seventy-one points on Saturday night.
Port Adelaide were never in the contest as Luke Beveridge proved his team is never without a chance, despite being written off multiple times in 2021.
They say preliminary final week is the greatest weekend of football.
While that may not be true this year, Saturday night gave us another incredible preliminary final performance, the second night in a row the contest has been too hot to handle.
Beveridge’s men followed the lead set by Melbourne on Friday night as they thumped their opposition, running all over Port Adelaide from the opening siren.
When the Dogs kicked the first five goals, Ken Hinkley’s men only needed to replicate a Round 23 style comeback.
Down by 36 points at quarter time, something special was needed.
But come half time, Port players were shell shocked heading into the rooms, their 58-point deficit bigger than any four-quarter loss they’ve faced this season.
After working so hard to confirm themselves as Premiership material, the Power threw it all away in 60 minutes of football.
There’s no doubt the Dogs were fantastic throughout the first half, but to lose the contested possession count by 23 in a quarter takes more than one team’s brilliance.
Port Adelaide great Kane Cornes said he was “blown away” by what he’d seen.
“I’m just blown away. What Melbourne did last night was unbelievable, I didn’t think I’d see it again tonight,” he told AFL Nation.
The Ken Hinkley rev-up at half time clearly had some effect, Port winning all major stats for the first 10 minutes of the third quarter.
However, it was to no avail.
– BY SEB MOTTRAM/ SEN