If you were hoping this week’s AFL finals action would feature close games, you were left sorely disappointed as the Geelong Cats and GWS Giants had dominate leads by second quarter time that they never relinquished against Sydney Swans and West Coast Eagles respectively. Patrick Dangerfield put on a complete performance as a forward for Geelong sparking a 98-39 drubbing of the Swans, as the Cats had a six goal lead at halftime that they would only build upon. Without a goal from an injury hampered Lance Franklin, the Swans lacked even the semblance of a forward attack. They only had five goalscorers, and they all had one goal each. Even in the midfield the Swans lagged behind, outside of Dan Hannebery and his 27 disposals, no Swan had more than 25. Mitch Duncan, Sam Menegola, and Dangerfield led the Cats, Scott Selwood laid 10 tackles, as Menegola and Duncan combined for 4 goals, and Dangerfield had 4 goals himself. Mark Blicavs laid 14 tackles himself as Geelong put on a flag worthy performance.
The Swans started the season in awful form, they got red hot, but in the head the weaknesses of their side this year were exposed before a national stage on Friday night. Sydney goes home, and Geelong will face Adelaide in the Prelim finals.
The GWS Giants advanced one game further (at least) than their NSW rivals the Swans, facing a potentially tricky test against the highly motivated West Coast Eagles they passed with flying colors, winning 125-58 in a contest where the Eagles only led for a few minutes in the first term. Younger and faster, with a superior attack, the Giants countered in the open field against West Coast, racing forward on attack and clogging the path forward for the slower Eagles when they were trying to score goals. Dropped at times this season and gracefully aging into retirement, Steve Johnson turned back the clock and kicked six goals. Toby Greene and Jon Patton combined for five, as collectively the three Giants forwards made up for the absence of Jeremy Cameron.
Stephen Coniglio and a seemingly recontracted Josh Kelly led the Giants midfield and did their part with a high workrate. The retiring Matt Priddis and Sam Mitchell put together honorable performances in their final career games, Mitchell kicked a pair of goals, but the likes of Josh J. Kennedy and Elliot Yeo were less than impressive and hampered the Eagles chances. Outside of Jeremy McGovern, the Eagles backline was exposed as the more talented team clearly won on Saturday night.
GWS Giants face Richmond Tigers in the prelim final in a mouthwatering clash that is next up.