Lions stun Saints - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lions stun Saints

By Jim Morton 03/09/2004 10:57:36 PM Comments (0)

A ruthless Brisbane has powered to within two matches of AFL immortality on Friday night but might have to create history without two star forwards.

Jonathan Brown is in danger of joining fellow spearhead Alastair Lynch on the sidelines after being reported for rough play in the Lions stunning 80-point qualifying final savaging of St Kilda at the Gabba.

The triple premiers overcame a mystery virus that claimed two key men before the match to book a preliminary final berth in a fortnight with a 23.11 (149) to 10.9 (69) drubbing.

But Brown, already sidelined three different times this year through suspension, will have to find favour at the AFL tribunal to play another game this year after his part in a post-siren melee at quarter-time.

He was reported for holding Saints relief ruckman Jason Blake in a headlock during the push and shove which ended an explosive opening term that featured a string of heated melees.

Brown managed to put the spectre of another suspension behind him to bag six goals in front of a highly appreciative Gabba crowd of 33,582.

So vital is Lynch, battling a hamstring strain, and Brown to the Lions forward set-up that few pundits would have confidently predicted a record-equalling fourth straight premiership without them.

But such was Brisbane's dominance on Friday night, with its class midfield brigade running riot and Daniel Bradshaw's four-goal performance at full-forward, that only a fool would mark them as underdogs.

After the Saints were touched up by 45 points a fortnight ago at the Gabba, coach Grant Thomas stressed his young team would demand respect on this trip north.

But the visitors, whose man-marking was loose and skill level disappointing, earned none and will find it hard to rebound from the humiliation.

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