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AFLW game analysis: Round 1

Justin Cooper, Carlton Media  February 5, 2017 8:38 AM

AFLW Highlights: Carlton v Collingwood Watch the highlights from the Blues' win over the Magpies in AFLW Round 1.

In what was a historic night for the AFL and two of the league’s biggest rivals, Carlton came to play in front of a blockbuster crowd at Ikon Park for the AFL Women’s season starter.

The official crowd of 24,568 filled the ground and created an electric atmosphere on a night where physicality was evident early before the Blues ran away with the victory.

Carlton marquees Darcy Vescio (four goals) and Brianna Davey (26 disposals, one goal) were dominant, along with Bianca Jakobsson (17 disposals, five marks) and co-vice-captain Madeline Keryk (12 disposals, six tackles), who provided plenty of grunt and run out of the back half.

The Blues hit the scoreboard 11 times, with Vescio involved in a staggering seven score involvements.

Davey's 26 disposals were nine higher than next best Jakobsson, proving just how influential she was.

Despite having two more inside-50s than Carlton, the Pies could only conjure one goal, with Blues defenders Davey, Danielle Hardiman, Lauren Brazzale and Laura Attard reading the play superbly.

Hardiman was a standout in this area, taking a game-high 11 intercepts and four intercept marks.

AFLW 2017 Rd 01 - Carlton v Collingwood
Bri Davey (left) and Danielle Hardiman proved a rock-solid partnership in Carlton's defence. (Photo: AFL Media)

One of the telling stats was the Blues' 61 per cent disposal efficiency - eight higher than Collingwood. Carlton was also able to link up more effectively from defence and get its running game going, gaining 2774m to Collingwood's 2520.

Get all the post-match reaction from the Blues' historic AFLW win

The Blues also led in disposals (198-163), contested possessions (106-94) and handballs (86-48), showing that it was captain Lauren Arnell and her charges who endeavoured to win the ball first and use it better by hand and foot.

An exciting night has set the bar high for the Blues, who will look to back up their win against GWS at Ikon Park on Saturday.