AFL 2019: Five Things We Learned – Grand Final

Joel Bowes takes us through what we learned from the Tigers dominant Grand Final performance.

A Big, Big, Sound failed to materialise

Although I thought the Tigers would win comfortably on the big day, it’s strange to me that they decimated the Giants like they did. GWS had been a solid side all year, and although many suggested they had played their Grand Final against the Pies the week previous, they were still expected to turn up. We have seen similar instances before where the side that hasn’t been the second best all year has turned up to a Grand Final day and been pumped, (Port Adelaide 2007).

Dusty is a rare talent

Winning his second Norm Smith Medal, Dustin Martin becomes just the fourth player to win two best on grounds on Grand Final day, along with Hawks Gary Ayres and Luke Hodge, and Crows’ legend Andrew McLeod. Of those players, all greats in their own right, Martin is the only one who has a Brownlow Medal as well. Martin returned to form at the absolute time, and proved once again that he really is ‘Mister September’.

Phil Davis proves Grand Final risks can be costly

The Giants kept skipper Phil Davis in the side despite his calf injury he nursed through the week previous. His match up against Jack Riewoldt was highly one sided, Riewoldt kicked five goals and Davis was always a few yards behind. Although Davis is an excellent footballer and one of the Giants most crucial players, he like many, was way below his best, but in all honesty, they had to play him if they were any chance.

Be sure to check out who earned big performer status on Grand Final Day.

Marlion Pickett proves Grand Final risks can pay off

Selecting a debutant in a Grand Final is such a big gamble no side has done it since 1952, until now of course. Marlion Pickett leapfrogged several Tiger’s fringe players to claim a spot in the side, after unfortunate hard-nut Jack Graham was ruled out during the build up week. Pickett claimed 22 touches and two marks, booting a goal as well in an influential display that won him four Norm Smith Medal votes. Pickett now has just begun his career and yet somehow has already achieved the highest level of team success a player can hold. It was a day he’ll never forget for sure.

It’s the Tigers World – The rest of us are just living in it.

With two flags in three years, Richmond have the side and the time to create a proper dynasty. Only likely to lose Brandon Ellis from their Premiership side, this Tigers team can be the best in the league again and again, and maybe they can win a couple more flags in the coming seasons. Expect Richmond to have a relatively quiet trade period, there’s no need to change a winning formula. These boys will be back near the top again next year.

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