ADELAIDE 0.5.2 0.10.7 0.16.8 0.18.11 (119) PORT ADELAIDE 0.0.2 0.2.4 0.4.4 0.9.5 (59)
Goals: Adelaide: E Betts 5 M Wright 2 R Douglas 2 B Smith J Jenkins J Lyons J Podsiadly J Porplyzia L Johnston R Sloane S Kerridge. Port Adelaide: A Young 2 P Stewart 2 B Newton J Pittard M White T Logan.
Best: Adelaide: Betts, Mackay, Wright, M. Crouch, Douglas, Sloane. Port Adelaide: Broadbent, Moore, Cassisi, Wines, Polec, Logan.
Umpires: Sam Hay, Leigh Haussen, Craig Fleer.
Crowd: 8765 at Richmond Oval.
Eddie Betts found a pair of shorts that fit him, and Adelaide has a new forward structure that also looks the part.
Betts, the former Carlton dynamo, who signed with Adelaide for the next four years on $500,000 a season, kicked five goals and sent the fans into a frenzy. They always are here in February.
With a leaner James Podsiadly, the experienced recruits contributed to six of the opening eight goals in a dreadfully one-sided NAB Challenge contest at Richmond Oval that better resembled an AFL side playing Port Adelaide’s reserves.
The Power was without 12 first-choice players, including skipper Travis Boak, and there was a lot to like about most of its new players, including Brisbane Lions midfielder Jared Polec and Shepparton Swans 18-year-old midfielder Jarman Impey.
However, it was the influence of a typically lively and creative Betts, and the competitiveness of Podsiadly that satisfied the besieged Crows fans most. ‘Pods’ kicked one goal, and played in defence later in the game, but while he didn’t quite live up to his reputation by looking rusty with his marking attempts, few could question his teamwork and effort.
We could argue the quality of the opposition in virtually a meaningless game, but with Adelaide under pressure to look threatening in attack since Tony Modra left the club in 1998, this was the expected big news most in this town were desperately needing.
Adding to Adelaide’s nice day out was the most encouraging performances of Jason Porplyzia and David Mackay, who, based on their fine talent, were disappointing last year.
Matt Crouch certainly lived up to the rave reviews in his debut in tri-colours that stemmed from his brother, Brad, last season, rookie-listed Charlie Cameron showed class, and Mitch Grigg looks ready to progress further from his brilliant debut season last year.
Richmond recruit Matt White didn’t star for Port, but showed enough to suggest he will also be a terrific pick-up, while Andrew Moore was the best of the few regulars from last season.
Port made the scoreboard respectable with a five-goal last quarter, and overall this encounter served its purpose for both sides, but by no means provided a forecast as to what we can expect when they meet at Adelaide Oval in round two.