CARLTON has held on at Marvel Stadium to record its fifth win of the season over Adelaide.
Defeating the comeback Crows by 10 points in their first game in Victoria since Round 10, the Blues performed in front of a vocal home crowd to hang on for a valuable four points.
Here is how it all unfolded on Sunday evening:
It was a slow start in Carlton’s first game back in Victoria, kept scoreless in the opening term until the final minutes. Gathering plenty of possessions, the Blues struggled to find avenues in attack while the ball floated into the Crows forward 50. Sam Walsh was Carlton’s primary ball-winner through the first term, showing plenty through the centre despite the scoreline. It took until the 16-minute mark of the opening term for a goal to be scored, with the Crows taking an early lead with two consecutive goals. Adam Saad then decided to take matters into his own hands, running off half back through the centre to kick truly towards goal. Less than a minute later and with the quarter drawing to a close, Harry McKay made it two in a row heading into the second term.
McKay picked up where he left off in the opening minutes of the second term at Marvel Stadium, taking advantage of an inside 50 from Paddy Dow to notch his second. Eddie Betts then opened the floodgates for the Blues, with a sure kick putting the Blues in front. A Betts assist then led to Matt Owies’ first goal of the afternoon, shortly followed by an astonishing team goal that saw Jack Martin notch his own major. Having shared the love, Betts decided to kick another one of his own goals, selling the candy artfully in front of goal to record his second. But the jewel of the quarter had to be a captain’s goal from the recently re-signed Patrick Cripps that saw Blues come from around the ground to celebrate alongside the skipper. Despite a late Adelaide answer on the siren, it was a blistering eight-goal quarter from the Blues which saw them lead by 28 points at the main break.
From the first bounce of the third quarter, it was certain to be a fierce battle in the second half. The Crows came back on to the ground refreshed with a new-found attack after half-time. An early goal from Eddie Betts looked to be a strong opening for the Blues, but the Crows worked away at whittling away the lead with three consecutive goals. It was set to be a nerve-racking final quarter for Blues supporters, but a late settling goal from Jack Martin prompted a brief sigh of relief before the siren. Carlton's spirit was on display in a fiery third term, with teammates coming from everywhere after Jacob Weitering was on the receiving end of a late bump.
Adelaide kept the pressure on in the last term, with the four points still up for grabs at the start of the last term. Carlton’s defence was under siege for the final term, with two goals from Taylor Walker leaving Blues supporters with some late nerves. Desperate defensive efforts from Adam Saad, as well as tireless work from Liam Jones in the goal square, saw the Blues hang on to secure the 10-point win.
How's that winning feeling, Bluebaggers!?— Carlton FC (@CarltonFC) June 27, 2021
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Moment of the match:
Sublime all afternoon in his defensive efforts while impacting the scoreboard with a classy running goal, Adam Saad was at his brilliant best in a chase-down tackle late in the fourth. With the Blues under siege in their back half, Saad saved a near certain Crows goal and subsequently the match with his relentless run.
Three things from the match
1. Patrick Cripps will continue to be the heart of soul of the Navy Blue for many years to come. Bluebaggers roared as the skipper kicked true for a second-quarter goal that continued the Blues' scoring flurry. As Blues ran from across the ground to celebrate with the skipper, supporters made Marvel Stadium feel like IKON Park as they got behind their man.
2. Sam Petrevski-Seton and Paddy Dow were bright sparks in a relatively new-look Carlton midfield. While Cripps and the excellent Sam Walsh (39 disposals) were there as always, the two Blues who have spent time in different areas of the ground looked at home in the centre bounce. After previously playing off half back, Petrevski-Seton burst out of the blocks before finishing with 14 disposals, while Dow was combative in a performance which yielded 20 disposals and a goal.
3. Carlton's strong intercept marking kept the side steady throughout the afternoon, despite repeat challenges from Adelaide. Carlton finished with the lion's share in the stat, notching 74 intercepts throughout the afternoon with Jacob Weitering and Liam Jones leading that count as always. Jones was brilliant in the final stages, while Weitering produced a career-high 16 marks.
CARLTON 2.0 10.4 12.6 12.11 (83)
ADELAIDE 2.6 5.6 8.9 10.13 (73)
Carlton: Betts 3, Martin 2, McKay 2, Cripps, Dow, Owies, Saad, Williams
Carlton: Walsh, Jones, Williams, Saad, Weitering, Kennedy,