Eagles make hard work of Tigers - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Eagles make hard work of Tigers

By Stuart Mclea 18/08/2007 11:53:29 PM Comments (0)

West Coast have grabbed second spot on the AFL ladder for the time being after beating Richmond by 31 points in their AFL clash at Subiaco Oval.

However the home team could pay a heavy price for not building on its percentage come the end of the home-and-away season.

The Eagles will likely fall to third on Sunday with second-placed Hawthorn and third-placed Port Power set to meet in Tasmania.

Three goals in succession to the Tigers just before three quarter time had the visitors within nine points and it took a Quinten Lynch steadier to give the home side some breathing space at the final change.

Lynch finished with seven goals as the Eagles won 18.9 (117) to 12.14 (86).

West Coast went into the match without superstars Chris Judd and Ben Cousins and struggled to shake off the visitors all night.

Daniel Kerr was simply unstoppable in the engine room for the winners with 30 touches, while Nathan Brown was superb for the Tigers, turning back the clock with three goals.

He should have had four after running into an open goal and hitting the post in the third term.

Not everything went right for the winners with West Coast forward Brent Staker reported in the second quarter for striking Adam Pattison.

The Tigers' spirit was on show from the opening bounce.

Lynch opened the scoring for the night before Richardson dribbled a snap through from the left forward pocket.

Both teams traded goals for the rest of the quarter with Michael Braun kicking truly to ensure the home side had an eight-point lead at the first change.

Brown reduced the margin to two points within 30 seconds of the re-start, running into an open goal, but that major seemed to spark the Eagles into life.

Mark Seaby, Lynch (two goals) and LeCras (two goals) had the Eagles up by 32 points. A Richardson mark and goal and Brown's second reduced the margin to 20 at the main break.

West Coast coach John Worsfold said he was satisfied with his team's efforts considering their injury concerns.

He expects Judd and Cousins to play against St Kilda at the Telstra Dome next Friday night.

Beau Waters, Daniel Chick and Mark Nicoski are

others likely to come into contention for that crucial game.

"He (Ben Cousins) was pretty close (tonight)," Worsfold said.

"We left him out when he was ready to play against Brisbane and it (hamstring) has troubled him in the games he has played in.

"We will try to get to the bottom of it. We are pretty confident there is no strain there. It was mainly his call (not to play). I asked him when we arrived at the Telstra Dome last week whether has fit and ready to go because we were worried about his hamstring and he said that he was confident he was right. This week he wasn't.

"Talking to Chris, we decided he needed a rest this week.

"With Embley, Cousins and Judd out of the side, we asked the players to step up their workloads."

Richmond coach Terry Wallace said his team deserved praise for running the West Coast so close, but lamented wasted chances in the final quarter.

Forward Matthew Richardson was the main culprit with two misses from set shots.

"I thought definitely the score didn't reflect the game," he said.

"We had plenty of opportunities but just didn't make the most of our chances.

"You would give him (Richardson) absolutely an A-plus for work effort, commitment to the side, ability to take on a real class player and take them on.

"We just didn't get as much cream out of it. I still thought he had a terrific game.

"Still, when the game is there to be won, you need your good players to kick them.

"Down the other end every time (Quinten Lynch) Lynchy got the ball he put them through the big sticks.

"He probably did not have as much of it as Matthew had but ended up with a much stronger scoreline."

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