Round 20 treated Australian football fans to some of the most thrilling games of the season, with five matches decided by less than a goal. Perhaps the biggest talking point of the week though was during Sunday’s Western Derby, with West Coast defeating Fremantle 21.16 (142) to 13.6 (84). It was a marred win for the Eagles though, with midfielder Andrew Gaff brutally punching Fremantle youngster Andrew Brayshaw more than 20 metres off the ball. Brayshaw was taken to hospital for surgery with a broken jaw and four displaced teeth, with Gaff to face the tribunal on Tuesday.
It was a nail-biting Showdown 45, with the mighty Adelaide Crows defeating Port Adelaide in a controversial three-point win on Saturday. With less than three minutes to go, Crows forward Josh Jenkins kicked the match-winning goal, though officials were unsure if the ball grazed the post on the way in. Jenkins admitted post-game that he thought contact was made, but while Power coach Ken Hinkley was upset with the call, he made it clear that the Crows were the better side on the day and deserved the win.
Melbourne are back in the top four after crushing Gold Coast 21.17 (143) to 7.5 (47) at the MCG on Sunday. It was a dominant display from the Demons, producing the highest-scoring opening quarter of any team this season, with a 51-point lead at the first change. Next up, Melbourne will face Sydney at the MCG, while Gold Coast will take on top-placed Richmond at Metricon Stadium.
It was another week of change in the top 8, with Collingwood dropping three places to 6th and Port Adelaide also falling three places to take 7th. GWS, Melbourne and Hawthorn have all tightened their grip on their top 8 spots, while Sydney have surrendered their place to Geelong.
Upcoming: Round 21
Friday, August 10th
Essendon v St Kilda (Etihad Stadium)
Saturday, August 11th
Hawthorn v Geelong (MCG)
Gold Coast v Richmond (Metricon Stadium)
Port Adelaide v West Coast (Adelaide Oval)
Collingwood v Brisbane (Etihad Stadium)
GWS v Adelaide (UNSW Canberra)
Sunday, August 12th
North Melbourne v Western Bulldogs (Etihad Stadium)
Melbourne v Sydney (MCG)
Fremantle v Carlton (Optus Stadium)
The One to Watch
Hawthorn will take on Geelong at the MCG on Saturday, with the 5th and 9th placed teams battling to secure their place in finals. The Cats will battle to reclaim their place in the top eight, but can the Hawks fight back and make it four in a row?
When: Saturday, August 11th at 1:45PM AEST
Find the full list of AFL broadcast times and channels here (http://www.afl.com.au/tv-radio/broadcastguide)
Watch every AFL match LIVE with the AFL Live App – click here to find out more and to subscribe (https://id.afl.com.au/livepass)
Who are you tipping this week? Let us know in the comments below!
The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Telstra or other contributors to this site.
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