Hawks upset Cats 115-89 to claim flag - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hawks upset Cats 115-89 to claim flag

28/09/2008 06:59:30 AM Comments (0)

Iron-willed Hawthorn derailed the Geelong juggernaut to win their 10th AFL premiership.

And they did it in a style that would have earned the approval of their greatest-ever coach, the famously hard-nosed John Kennedy.

The Cats came into the grand final having won 42 of their last 44 matches and chasing back-to-back flags for the first time in more than half a century.

But it was the Hawks who flew highest, booting 13 goals to six after quarter-time to win 18.7 (115) to 11.23 (89) before a huge MCG crowd of 100,012, the biggest for a grand final since 1986.

Hawthorn had heroes everywhere, none more so than former skipper Shane Crawford, who finally tasted the ultimate triumph in his 305th game.

Luke Hodge was a deserving winner of the Norm Smith medal as the best player on the field, marshalling the defence in superb style.

And former Port Adelaide premiership player Stuart Dew fully vindicated the decision of coach Alastair Clarkson to coax him out of retirement, capping a strong game with two memorable third-quarter goals.

The Hawks could even afford a quiet performance from spearhead Lance Franklin, who kicked two goals and was well beaten by Cats fullback Matthew Scarlett.

The victory came 12 years after Hawthorn narrowly avoided a merger with Melbourne and only four years after they finished second-bottom on the ladder.

It was their first premiership in 17 years and their 10th overall, pulling them level with Richmond.

Only Carlton, Essendon, Collingwood and Melbourne have claimed more VFL/AFL flags.

Geelong had won the only previous encounter between the two sides this year by 11 points back in round 17.

But on Saturday, the short-priced favourites had no answer to Hawthorn's uncompromising attack on both the ball and any Geelong players who happened to get in the way.

The Hawks were two players short for the second half after Trent Croad and Clinton Young went down with ankle injuries.

Geelong skipper Tom Harley was also unavailable for all but a few minutes of the second half after suffering a heavy concussion in a clash of heads with Hawks forward Mark Williams.

It was that sort of match.

"I still expect that Geelong will continue to be a dominant side next year," said victorious coach Alastair Clarkson.

"We got the victory today, but it could have quite easily been a quite different result and I wouldn't suggest for one minute that elevates us above Geelong because we still respect them enormously."

The Cats were not helped by inaccuracy in front of goal, although 12 of their behinds were rushed by Hawthorn defenders.

Five days after finishing a close third in the Brownlow Medal, Gary Ablett was far and away Geelong's best player.

It was the first all-Victorian grand final since Essendon beat Melbourne by 10 goals in 2000.

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2021 AAP

0 Comments about this article

Post a comment about this article

Please sign in to leave a comment.
Becoming a member is free and easy, sign up here.

« All sports news