Hawks thrash Dockers in wet - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hawks thrash Dockers in wet

By Justin Chadwick 30/07/2011 11:46:33 PM Comments (0)

Hawthorn proved they are more than just dry-weather specialists with a scintillating 51-point AFL victory over an insipid Fremantle at a rain-drenched Patersons Stadium on Saturday night.

In torrential conditions Hawthorn took to the soggy ground like a duck to water, booting the first eight goals of the match to set up the 13.17 (95) to 6.8 (44) victory.

The inside 50m count best summed up Hawthorn's dominance, with the visitors posting 50 entries to just 19 over the first three quarters before Fremantle booted four goals to two in a last term bereft of meaning.

It was a dirty night for the Dockers, who lost Rhys Palmer to what appeared to be a serious ankle injury and Matt de Boer to a knee complaint.

Ruckman Jonathon Griffin (hip) was withdrawn before the bounce, while defender Dylan Roberton could be in strife for his elbow to the head of Hawthorn's Xavier Ellis.

Hawthorn's 13th win of the year moved them back above Carlton into third spot on the ladder, while the Dockers slipped to eighth and could slump to as low as ninth if Essendon upsets Collingwood on Sunday.

Fremantle face a tough task to lock up a finals berth, with next Friday's away match against St Kilda to be followed by games against Carlton, North Melbourne (away), Collingwood and the Bulldogs (away).

Confronted with powerful rain and a fierce breeze on Saturday night the Hawks, renowned as one of the best kicking sides in the competition, proved they are just as good playing old fashioned wet-weather football.

Even against the breeze the Hawks were dominant, with the error-riddled Dockers failing to even register a forward-50m entry during the first 22 minutes of the second quarter.

When Fremantle did eventually manage a foray forward, the 30,937 rain-drenched crowd belted out a Bronx cheer.

By that stage the game was already over, with the Hawks holding a remarkable 55-2 lead.

A pre-match downpour ensured for slippery conditions but the rain stayed away in the opening quarter as Cyril Rioli booted two goals for the term to spark the Hawks' fast start with the aid of a strong breeze.

Hawthorn led 39-2 at the first break, but Fremantle's quest to make the most of the breeze in the second quarter was thwarted when torrential rain hit the venue.

The Hawks controlled the term but late goals to Ryan Crowley and Matthew Pavlich ensured Fremantle didn't end the half goalless.

But it was too little too late.

The only real bright point for the Dockers on the night was the tireless work of defender Alex Silvagni, who kept Lance Franklin goalless for the first time since round three last year.

Hawthorn midfielder Sam Mitchell was influential throughout the game, but copped a knock to his ankle in the dying minutes.

"Just a little tweak, I'll be fine," Mitchell said after the match.

Fremantle coach Mark Harvey conceded nothing went right for his side.

"It was like ... when you're walking by and a bird happens to sh** on you - it's bad luck," Harvey said.

"And if you have a look at the first quarter, the breeze sprung up and Hawthorn had it and kicked six goals and then in the second quarter when we had it, I think for 10 minutes it was torrential rain, so it doesn't help you does it.

"We just had a bad day all day around, even the weather wasn't kind to us."

Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson praised his side's efforts against the breeze in the second quarter.

"Our boys worked really hard in that quarter, and to win the quarter, even though it was only by a couple of points, to still go in with a six-goal margin at half-time was really important for us," Clarkson said.

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