Sydney edge Essendon in thriller - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Sydney edge Essendon in thriller

James Dampney 03/04/2011 06:33:09 PM Comments (0)

Sydney are emerging as the AFL's version of the 'Cardiac Kids' after coming from 28 points down to pip Essendon by five points in a thrilling clash at ANZ Stadium.

A week after Ryan O'Keefe's behind in the dying seconds gave the Swans a draw with Melbourne at the MCG, a late Jude Bolton goal helped Sydney rally for a 14.14 (98) to 13.15 (93) victory over the Bombers on Sunday.

Essendon opened a 28-point lead in the second quarter and held sway for most of the game, but the Swans found a little extra in the tank and benefited from some close calls in the closing minutes to scrape home.

NBL club the Sydney Kings earned the nickname 'Cardiac Kids' in the early 1990s for some nail biting finishes and now their harbour city counterparts are taking on a similar persona.

"I just thought we found a way to win," beaming Sydney coach John Longmire said after the game.

"I think we were over four goals down at one point and some of our ball use wasn't great, but we just dug in and started chipping away and really made a big effort to get back in the game.

"(We've had) a couple of reasonably close games, put it that way.

"Inches matter and that's what really stands out, if you get it wrong any particular time it can cost you a game.

"Over the first two rounds there's been some really tight ones and you really need to play the whole game out and every little contest matters."

O'Keefe again excelled for the home side, along with Adam Goodes, Bolton and Dan Hannebery, with Bolton and Ben McGlynn kicking three goals apiece.

Michael Hurley, Patrick Ryder, Jason Winderlich and Stewart Crameri all kicked two goals for Essendon, while Jobe Watson (24 possessions) and impressive youngster Dyson Heppell (21) saw plenty of the ball.

But Sydney were on top when it mattered to steal the four points as Essendon's interstate woes continued, losing a seventh straight game out of Melbourne.,

Bombers coach James Hird could only tip his hat to the Swans after the game.

"In the second quarter we were in control, but they won it back through their stoppage work," he said.

"Sydney have been notorious in the last five, six, however many years of bringing it back just when it seems to get away from them.

"We were aware of that but we just couldn't stop it.

"It was a terrific win by them."

In a see-sawing final term, Kyle Hardingham was harshly penalised for holding the ball at the 25-minute mark and Bolton coolly slotted the free kick to give Sydney the lead.

Then with 90 seconds left Brent Stanton seemed certain to reply as he chased a bouncing ball towards the goal square, but it took a wicked bounce to the right and Sydney forced a stoppage before holding on for victory.

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