Five talking points: Fremantle v Carlton
1. No love lost
Fremantle was happy at Ryan Crowley’s shutdown job on Chris Judd (17 disposals), who’d averaged 33 possessions at Patersons Stadium against Freo while a Blue. Judd spent a bit of time complaining to the umps about the treatment from Freo’s tagger, and found some love in cyberspace with Gary Ablett tweeting early in last night’s match: “Crowley is a joke. Play the ball not the man! That’s why Lingy was such a great players he ran both ways.” Tweet war loomed when Alex Silvagni shot back with: “whatever gets the job done Gaz!” Twits at dawn, anyone?
2. Almost nearly
Blues high-flyer Andrew Walker enjoyed the pre-match Anzac tribute for the Len Hall match so much he took to the skies like a Spitfire for what could have been the mark of the season – only he dropped it. Walker was catapulted into the stratosphere after his initial leap on Zac Clarke’s shoulders, then it looked like he realised he had a long way to fall and fumbled the mark. For the record, Len Hall was WA’s last surviving digger at Gallipoli.
3. Night to forget
The WA teams like to refer to Patersons Stadium as the ‘House of Pain’ for opponents, but it was Jack Anthony who was in agony in the third term. Already maligned in the west, Anthony’s five-minute spell was the stuff of nightmares. Firstly a confused effort after winning a free kick on the 50m attacking arc gifted Carlton a goal to Jeff Garlett, then he gave away an undisciplined free to Nick Duigan before spraying a set shot out on the full. Ross Lyon was quickly on the phone, and Anthony’s night was over soon after when he donned the red substitute’s vest.
4. No Sandi, no Freo?
In the opening four rounds Aaron Sandilands dominated the hit-outs but Freo weren’t winning the clearances. Jon Griffin (25 hit-outs) battled strongly on Friday night with Sandilands out injured, and Freo even won the clearance count (38-32). But they lost the game, continuing a sad run for Fremantle without the walking lamppost. Since the start of 2009, Freo have lost 12 of 15 when Sandilands hasn’t played.
5. Video for boundary calls?
Four umpires converged, chatted then made a baffling decision to award out on the full against Carlton forward Shaun Hampson in the opening term. The ball had actually been knocked on to Hampson’s thigh, but the free was awarded to Freo.