Dockers down: Fremantle players slump, dejected after their loss to Adelaide at AAMI Stadium. Photo: Getty Images
FREMANTLE forward Chris Mayne knows the club had a great chance to play in an AFL preliminary final.
Up by 27 points heading towards half-time in the second semi-final against Adelaide, the Dockers had the answer to anything the Crows tried.
Mayne started brilliantly kicking his side's first two majors before Adelaide had really touched the ball, and added his third in the first minute of the second term.
But then man-of-the-match Taylor Walker kicked a goal after the siren at half-time and Adelaide booted four goals to one in the third term to take a five-point lead into the final term before edging away to a 10-point win.
The Crows were headed again briefly in the fourth quarter, but it was clear the momentum had shifted in the home side's favour. ''It's disappointing that we let a chance like that slip away,'' Mayne said.
''We never thought it was gone or done and dusted. We stuck with how we wanted to play and tried to execute our roles. Unfortunately it didn't work out the way we wanted. But Adelaide are a quality side, they've proved that over the year. We knew they were going to come.''
Despite 2012 ending on a disappointing note, Mayne said the Dockers would look back on what was a good season for the club, especially last weekend's win over Geelong to keep their finals campaign alive.
But the focus would soon turn to 2013, he said.
''With the players we've got now we've really built a strong group,'' Mayne said. ''Now we have to stick together … and come back strong and hit next year head on.''