And then there was four atop AFL ladder - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

And then there was four atop AFL ladder

By Guy Hand 11/07/2004 07:37:55 PM Comments (0)

Seemingly unstoppable five games ago, St Kilda slipped back to the pack as its three nearest rivals joined it for a share of the AFL lead.

Only percentage keeps the Saints atop the ladder after their 57-point loss to Melbourne at the MCG, with the Demons, Brisbane and Port Adelaide all joining them on 11 wins with victory on Sunday.

Brisbane whacked the Western Bulldogs by 68 points at the Gabba, while Port Adelaide embarrassed Carlton with a 18.15 (123) to 5.10 (40) win at AAMI Stadium.

Melbourne's impressive 23.8 (146) to 13.11 (89) victory sent the Saints tumbling to their fourth loss in five games and their biggest losing margin of the season.

And it confirmed the resurgent Demons are the real deal - possibly usurping St Kilda as the best Victorian hope of winning the premiership.

Cameron Bruce and Brad Green kicked three goals apiece and were best for the Demons, while Richmond discard Ben Holland lit up with a four-goal haul.

Nick Riewoldt played a lone hand for St Kilda, kicking nine goals as the full forward replacement for the suspended Fraser Gehrig.

After a tight opening, Melbourne kicked three of the last four goals in the first half to lead by 15 points at the main break.

They then killed off the game in the third term, kicking six goals to three.

The Saints also have several injury concerns out of the match, with centre half forward Aaron Hamill having a pre-match injection for a rib injury which hampered him all day and defenders Matt Maguire and Luke Penny hurt.

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