K rock Football


Adelaide (1st) vs. Richmond (3rd)


Saturday, September 30, 2:30pm (AEST)

Richmond celebrates its first AFL premiership in 37 years. (AAP Image/Julian Smith)

RICHMOND have broken their 37-year AFL premiership drought, belting Adelaide by 48 points in the grand final.

After a nervous start, the Tigers kept the Crows goalless in the second term and overran them after halftime to win 16.12 (108) to 8.12 (60) in front of 100,021 fans at the MCG on Saturday.

It is Richmond’s 11th premiership and comes just 12 months after they missed out on finals football.

“Who would have thought we finished 13th last year, beaten by (113) points in the last round and now we’re f***ing premiers,” Tigers forward Jack Riewoldt told Channel Seven.

Richmond on-baller Dustin Martin was voted the Norm Smith Medallist as best afield, becoming the first player to win the award, win a premiership and the Brownlow Medal in the same season.

“I honestly cannot believe it. This is a dream come true,” Martin said.

“This is the best thing in the world mate. I’m proud of each and every player that played today.”

Defenders Alex Rance and Bachar Houli were also outstanding, while teenager Jack Graham starred with three goals in just his fifth AFL match.

Adelaide started favourites and the popular thinking was that if it became a one-sided game, the Crows would prove too good.

Instead Richmond rallied superbly and used their relentless pressure to take the game away from the Crows.

The signs were excellent early for the Crows, with opening goals to Rory Sloane and Eddie Betts in the first five minutes.

Tigers key forward Jack Riewoldt then kicked three behinds, adding to their worries.

But Richmond steadied with goals to Josh Caddy and Houli, before Sloane kicked his second and the Crows had an 11-point lead at the first change.

Slowly, but surely, the Tigers then took control.

Rance’s spoil on Taylor Walker four minutes into the second term gave Richmond possession and Riewoldt soon marked at the other end.

Riewoldt kicked his first goal from an acute angle, the Crows could not respond and the Tigers ramped up the pressure.

Richmond kicked the only four goals of the second term to take a nine-point lead at the main break.

It was the first time in their 36 matches that Richmond had kept Adelaide goalless for a quarter.

Martin was now dominating and Trent Cotchin was a battering ram at the stoppages.

Adding to the Crows’ dramas, Luke Brown (knee) and Hugh Greenwood (calf) were among hurt players.

Richmond kicked the opening three goals of the third term and the dam wall was creaking for the Crows.

Adelaide captain Walker replied at 14 minutes, their first goal since the 26-minute mark of the opening term, but it was their only major of the third quarter.

Graham, the youngest player in the match, kicked two goals in the third term.

Even more importantly, he quelled Sloane’s influence after the Adelaide vice- captain’s influential start.

Rory Atkins and Josh Jenkins missed gettable shots late in the term that would have given Adelaide hope.

Instead, Richmond kicked the opening two goals of the last quarter and it was time to party.

© AAP 2017

RICHMOND 2.3 6.4 11.8 16.12 (108)

ADELAIDE 4.2 4.7 5.10 8.12 (60)

Goals: Richmond: J Graham 3 D Martin 2 J Riewoldt 2 J Townsend 2 B Houli D Butler D Prestia J Caddy J Castagna K Lambert S Grigg. Adelaide: R Sloane 2 T Walker 2 B Crouch C Cameron E Betts H Greenwood.

Best: Richmond: B Houli A Rance D Martin T Cotchin J Riewoldt S Edwards J Graham. Adelaide: M Crouch R Laird S Jacobs R Sloane B Crouch.

Umpires: Shaun Ryan, Matt Stevic, Simon Meredith.

Official Crowd: 100,021 at MCG.

Norm Smith Medal Votes:

13 – Dustin Martin, Richmond 33331.
10 – Bachar Houli, Richmond  32221.
2 – Alex Rance, Richmond 2.
2 – Shane Edwards, Richmond 2.
2 – Dion Prestia, Richmond 11.
1 – Jack Graham, Richmond 1.

Chris Judd (MMM, Chairman) – D Martin, B Houli, J Graham.

Terry Wallace (AFL Nation) – B Houli, S Edwards, D Martin.

Daisy Pearce (Channel 7) – D Martin, B Houli, D Prestia.

Mark Maclure (ABC Radio) – D Martin, A Rance, B Houli.

Jake Niall (Fox Sports) – D Martin, B Houli, D Prestia.