Petrie steals show on Archer's big day - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Petrie steals show on Archer's big day

By Sam Lienert 01/07/2007 07:22:14 PM Comments (0)

The spotlight was on Glenn Archer, but it was Drew Petrie who emerged from the shadows to produce one of the cameos of the season and propel the Kangaroos to victory over the Western Bulldogs at the MCG.

The unheralded 'Roos' big man - who tallied just seven goals in the first 12 games of the season - piled on six in the opening 20 minutes to help his team celebrate Archer's 300th AFL match with a 17.9 (111) to 11.19 (85) win.

The Kangaroos led six goals to none 15 minutes into the match - with Petrie scoring five of them and handballing to Corey Jones to set up the other - and from there the Bulldogs never seriously threatened them.

"I was really focused, I was in the zone, as they say, it's a good place to be at the start of games," Petrie said of his dream start.

The Kangaroos kept winning the ball out of the centre, with ruckman Hamish McIntosh dominant and midfielders Daniel Harris, Adam Simpson and Brent Harvey starting well.

It seemed that every time they went forward, Petrie was on the end of it, with five of his six first-term goals coming from marks.

By the time he kicked his sixth goal 20 minutes into the match, having already had three opponents - Brian Harris, Chris Grant and Tom Williams - he admitted he was having to stop himself thinking about where it might end.

"I made sure that I didn't look up at the scoreboard to watch myself on replays or see how many I'd kicked or anything like that," Petrie said.

As it turned out, he added just one more in the second term to finish with seven.

But the damage was done, the Bulldogs never getting closer than a 20-point deficit.

Poor kicking did not help, as they booted 5.12 after half-time.

The 'Dogs were within 22 points early in the final quarter, but Kangaroos midfielder Brent Harvey kicked consecutive clever running goals to seal victory.

The match began with Archer, accompanied by his children, leading the Kangaroos through a guard of honour formed by 300 young fans.

Petrie said the occasion helped inspire their stunning start.

"Certainly before the game when we ran out and there was 300 kids lined up in Archer's No.11 and you saw the banner and you saw the crowd and all that, that just made you want to give your absolute all for that bloke," he said.

Archer himself was useful, without starring, but enjoyed Petrie's display.

"When he got to about four, I thought that will probably do him and then five and then six," Archer said.

"I don't think I've ever played with anyone, I can't remember the last time I saw someone kick six goals in a quarter, it was terrific."

Bulldogs coach Rodney Eade was scathing of his backmen.

"For whatever reason, a couple of defenders I think left their heads in the changerooms and I brought them out at quarter-time and was able to screw them back on for them," Eade said.

He said after that the Bulldogs tried hard, but their kicking let them down.

"We had more scoring shots, we didn't play well, they deserved to win, but I reckon eight shots within 30m should have been kicked," he said.

One positive was Chris Grant returning from injury for his first game of the season, although the lack of touch showed, as he kicked 1.2.

Eade said forward Robert Murphy would return from a hamstring injury against Port Adelaide next Saturday, while 18-year-old Andrejs Everitt, brother of Sydney's Peter, would make his debut.

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