Live AFL: Sunday August 26
The AFL finalists for 2012 have been decided after Fremantle came to Melbourne and enjoyed a big win over the Kangaroos. That result came after Geelong prevailed after a tougher-than-expected fight against the Western Bulldogs. And in the final match on Sunday, Adelaide thumped Melbourne in Brad Green's farewell match.
FINAL SCORE: Melbourne 11.15 (81) Adelaide 22.18 (150)
The siren sounds and many players head to Brad Green to pass on their best. In case you've missed the news .... the former Melbourne skipper is calling it quits after this game, Melbourne's final home match of 2012. For mine Green was an excellent player for the red & blue across more than 10 seasons. A terrific AFL career.
Q4 - 27.40: Genuine junk time now. Demons have outscored the Crows in the final quarter so far ... but only just.
Q4 - 18.21: That potential 100-point win looks an unlikely outcome now. Credit to the Dees for matching it with Adelaide during the final stanza. No surprise to see Scott Thompson (26) leading the way as the top Crows possession winner.
Q4 - 5.43: Demons have stemmed the bleeding somewhat. They've scored the only goal of the final quarter. Colin Sylvia (26) still leading the possession count for all-comers.
3QT: Melbourne 8.10 (58) Adelaide 20.12 (132)
A massive third term by the Crows, featuring 10 goals to three. That 100-point margin is well within the grasp of a top-four bound team.
Q3 - 28.52: Melbourne 8.9 (57) Adelaide 19.12 (126)
The lead is getting bigger and bigger. In the dying minutes before the final break, the margin has extended to about 70 points. Surely the Demons won't go down by 100 points after being in touch at half-time.
Q3 - 22.07: Melbourne 8.8 (56) Adelaide 16.12 (108)
Crows running away with the contest. It's six goals to three in the third quarter. Colin Sylvia (23 touches) having a significant impact for the Demons. Brad Green hasn't added to his two first-quarter goals.
FINAL: North Melbourne 12.7 (79) Fremantle 12.12 (132)
The Purple Army is stoked. Dockers reach the finals in Ross Lyon's first season at the helm. A really impressive victory, achieved without Matthew Pavlich.
Q4 - 23.44: North Melbourne 12.7 (79) Fremantle 12.12 (132)
A percentage boost for Freo! This result will officially lock up the AFL finalists for 2012 - even more reason for Blues fans to rue their shock loss to Gold Coast on Saturday night.
H/T: Melbourne 5.7 (37) Adelaide 10.8 (68)
Late goals from the Crows hurt Melbourne before the main interval. Adelaide with a stack more uncontested touches so far.
Q4 - 23.44: North Melbourne 11.7 (73) Fremantle 18.12 (120)
A huge last quarter by the Dockers. Eight goals to three with a couple of minutes to come. What was that about low-scoring Ross Lyon-coached teams?
Q4 - 11.51: North Melbourne 10.7 (67) Fremantle 13.12 (90)
Just when we we're talking about a Kangas revival ... the Dockers have put that to bed. Margin back out to 23 points and the visitors look safe. Impressive showing from Fremantle with Pavlich.
Q2 - 15.58: Melbourne 5.7 (37) Adelaide 7.5 (47)
Good contest at the MCG. Dees playing with plenty of spark, plenty of incentive to farewell Brad Green with a victory. Just a 10-point deficit for the home team midway through the second stanza.
Q4 - 6.04: North Melbourne 10.7 (67) Fremantle 11.12 (78)
Kangas with two quick goals to start the final quarter. Thomas and Harvey get on the board. Game on.
Q1 - 5.16: Melbourne 3.5 (23) Adelaide 5.4 (34)
Brad Green with 2.2 in his farewell game. Scott Thompson typically getting plenty of touches for the Crows.
3QT: North Melbourne 8.7 (55) Fremantle 11.10 (76)
A series of late goals to the Dockers gives them plenty of breathing space at three-quarter-time. Fremantle's 23 extra contested possessions a pointer to their ascendancy.
3QT: North Melbourne 8.4 (52) Fremantle 8.7 (55)
Q3 - 12.43: Tight contest at Etihad. Dockers clinging to a three-point lead after the Kangas had snatched the lead ... momentarily. Swallow and Anthony having the biggest impact for North, while Mundy had edged past Fyfe and Pearce for the most possessions for Freo.
ANALYSIS: It's a good contest so far. Pearce (19) and Swallow (18) fighting each other for the most possessions. Freo well on top on the possession count, leading the way on both the contested and uncontested count. Inside 50s pretty even by the main break.
Q2 - 15.45: Roos slowly eating away at Fremantle's lead. It's two goals each in the second quarter with the Kangas starting to level out the contest. It's shaping as a willing contest between two teams who can justify a top eight finish.
Q2 - 5.27: No goals added for either team in the second quarter. Dockers winning the overall possession count but the Kangas are breaking even on contested touches. No doubt Freo will push the Roos all the way today.
Quarter-time: An impressive showing by the Dockers who limited North Melbourne to just three scoring shots. Pearce on fire for Freo with 13 possessions in the opening stanza.
Q1 - 18.10: Dockers bounce back with the next two goals and lead by nine points. Freo's Pearce and North's Anthony both with seven touches thus far.
Q1 - 4.09: Kangas snag the opening goal. Macmillan gets it. Just a reminder that Pavlich is out, a late withdrawal for the Dockers.
Geelong v Western Bulldogs - live scores and player statistics
3QT: Geelong 10.8 (68) Western Bulldogs 7.5 (47)
A much better third quarter from the Bulldogs. They added four goals while the home team could manage only 2.4. A 21-point margin at the final break gives the Bulldogs some home for a major upset.
HALF-TIME WRAP: Geelong's form at home has been impressive but the positive news is off-set by injury news surrounding Travis Varcoe. The speedstar was playing his comeback game after missing most of the season with stress fractures in his foot. Varcoe was subbed out with reported foot soreness during the second quarter.
SELECTION NEWS: Matthew Pavlich is out of the Fremantle line-up with a groin injury. Dockers are taking on the Kangaroos at Etihad Stadium. The Freo skipper has been replaced by Zac Clarke.
Q2 - 28.46: There's the half-time siren! A regulation showing from the Cats. That's not being critical. You simply expect top notch and smart footy from such an experienced outfit.
Q2 - 18.01: GOAL! J-Pod gets in on the act. Geelong's lead out to six goals. Can easily see the Cats extending their lead to nearly 50 points by the interval. This match is following a predictable pattern.
Q2 - 16.30: Midway through the second quarter and the Cats hold a five-goal lead. Enright running amok with 17 possessions while Hunt and Kelly (both 13) are doing plenty of damage. Bulldogs are simply outclassed but are minimising the damage thus far.
Q2 - 6.02: GOAL. Geelong's second for the quarter. Duncan nails a beauty as the Cats set to rip into the Bullies.
QUARTER-TIME: It was pretty much as expected for the Cats. No surprise to see Kelly (10) and Enright (10) among the players to get most of the pill. But Josh Hunt (12) has the top billing. Basically the Cats are getting plenty of cheap and easy touches across half-back. Giansiracusa is the Bulldogs' solitary goal-scorer while Geelong's majors have been shared by Christensen, Hawkins and Taylor. Geelong 3.2 (20) Western Bulldogs 1.0 (6)
Q1 - 20.15: GOAL. Harry Taylor for the Cats. Geelong edges ahead again. Back out to a 14-point lead.
Q1 - 18.40: Ryan Griffen (nine possessions) leading the way for the Bulldogs, who have settled and sticking with the reigning premiers. No surprise to see Matthew Boyd with six touches.
Q1 - 11.40: As expected it's the Cats with all the play after only 11 minutes of the first quarter. But Josh Hunt is the unexpected top possession winner thus far.