Hawthorn 17 14 (116) defeated Gold Coast Suns 10 3 (63)
On a wet and miserable Tasmanian afternoon at Aurora Stadium the Hawks flexed their muscles on an up and coming Gold Coast team to earn a 53 point win, the only downside for the Hawks was what looked to be yet another hamstring injury to Cyril Rioli.
Gold Coast’s nickname may be the ‘Suns’, but they saw very little of it literally or figuratively on an afternoon of driving rain.
It started out so differently. The Suns were very competitive early, going goal for goal with the reigning premiers and perhaps beginning to dream of an upset as halftime approached. In a slog of a first half scores were level at 30 points a piece with just over five minutes of playing time remaining in the first half.
Then it happened. The Hawks went bang, kicking 4 goals in 4 minutes and 5 before the halftime siren to end a contest that five minutes earlier had been very much alive. The Hawks would incredibly score the next 57 points of the game straight -the score was 87-30 before Jack Martin would finally break the Gold Coast scoring drought with a goal a little over 7 minutes before 3 quarter time.
They’re a fantastic side the Hawks and won just about every position on the ground. The usual suspects did the damage, among them Luke Hodge was bandaged up as he so often is and fantastic as he equally as often is kicking 3 goals, Jarryd Roughead started well kicking the first goal of the game and was a consistent performer throughout, Isaac Smith, Jordan Lewis, Shaun Burgoyne, Liam Shiels and many others had good days. Frankly, we could list most of the side.
Jonathon Ceglar is an interesting player, the former Pie isn’t going to make it easy for Ben McEvoy to get back into this Hawks team.
There is one Hawk who deserves his own mention, Luke Bruest kicked another 3 goals straight to move his tally to 26 goals since his last behind. He could have done even more damage if not for a high hit from Sun Jarrod Harbrow which is certain to come under the scrutiny of the Match Review Panel. Bruest went to the bench almost immediately and stayed there for most of the final quarter, though he was able to return late.
For the Suns Brownlow favorite Gary Ablett had 45 possessions in an almost lone hand. He’s an incredible player Ablett, his impact maybe didn’t quite match the possession count but he was easily his team’s best. Steven May battled hard in a backline that spent much of the day under seige, Jaeger O’Meara and David Swallow tried hard in the middle and Charlie Dixon kicked 2 goals up forward.
The Suns crashed back to earth after one of the best wins for the club last week against Geelong, the comprehensive loss to the Hawks highlighting the gulf in class between the top couple of sides and the rest. They’ll have to bounce back quickly as they face Collingwood next Saturday evening at Metricon Stadium and have now lost 4 of their last 5 games. Essendon are breathing down their neck for the last spot in the top 8 and but for a couple of recent close Bomber losses the Suns might already have found themselves on the outside of the 8 looking in after such a strong start to the season.
The Hawks will face North Melbourne next Friday night and will almost certainly do so without Rioli. Sam Mitchell is close to a return which should help cover for Cyril’s expected absence.
Hawthorn – Hodge, Smith, Lewis, Bruest, Ceglar, Shiels
Gold Coast – Ablett, Swallow, O’Meara, May, Dixon