AFL Semi-Finals Recap
Updated: Oct 13, 2021
It was an incredible second week of AFL Finals in 2021. After the Cats and Bulldogs earned their place in the last four respectably, we are down to the last four, with a grand final spot up for grabs next week.
Geelong vs GWS
Geelong made light work of Greater Western Sydney (GWS) Giants, defeating them by 35-points. The Giants really struggled without key forwards in Toby Green and late out Jesse Hogan. After Geelong kicked the only two goals of the first quarter, despite the Giants winning the second quarter with three goals to two, it was still Geelong by 19-points at halftime.
It was the third quarter where Geelong was able to take the game by the scruff of the neck, kicking five goals to two, setting up a 35-point lead at the final change. Despite both sides kicking five goals apiece in the last quarter, it was the Cats who advance to yet another preliminary final by that same margin as three-quarter time.
Tom Hawkins had the biggest influence down forward, kicking five magical goals, along with help from Jeremy Cameron and Gary Rowan, both with two goals each.
Geelong is through to face Melbourne in the preliminary final next Friday night and will be feeling pretty angry, looking to exact vengeance for the round 23 defeat, with Max Gawn’s after the siren winner deciding the minor premiership for Melbourne at Geelong’s expense.
Geelong 15.13.103 defeated GWS 10.8.68
Brisbane vs Western Bulldogs
The Western Bulldogs stole a famous one-point victory over the Brisbane Lions, to advance to their first preliminary final since 2016. It was quite possibly the game of the year, so tight and hotly contested, down to the wire stuff. A rushed behind from Laitham Vandermeer, with less than a minute to play proving the difference.
It was the Lions out of the blocks early, kicking five goals to three in the first quarter. The Dogs managed to nose their way ahead by a point by half time, kicking three goals to two in the second quarter.
By the time the premiership quarter came, the Lions made it theirs and looked in control when they kicked the first three goals of the quarter. Jason Johannisen gave the Dogs some hope before three-quarter time, with a goal back. The Dogs would get the game on their terms, kicking three straight goals to get out to an eight-point lead.
Tom Fullarton gave the Lions some hope, with a goal to bring it back to a point. There were a few misses from both sides, and with the scores level, The Dogs looked like they had pinched it. Then Bailey Smith’s shot from deep in the pocket sailed through the middle, putting the Dogs up by a straight kick with just over two minutes to play.
The Lions wouldn’t lie down, as Zac Bailey took on the defenders and slammed home the goal to bring it level again, with less than a minute and a half remaining. The Dogs were desperate, and as Laitham Vandermeer was able to handball it out from a tackle to at least score, with 50 seconds on the clock, and that was good enough to see the Dogs through to face the Port Power in next weeks preliminary final.
An all-time classic final, possibly the game of the year. Bailey Smith was the star of the show for the Dogs, with three magical goals.
Western Bulldogs 11.13.79 defeated Brisbane 11.12.78
What a week of finals we saw. We are now turning our attention to next week's preliminary finals, and we can’t wait to see who will be through to the grand final. Congratulations to the Cats for their dominant performance, and to the Dogs for winning one of the greatest finals we’ve ever seen, that will live in the annals of footy history for some time to come
Preliminary Finals Draw
Melbourne vs Geelong 10/9/21 7:50 p.m. (Optus Stadium)
Port Adelaide vs Western Bulldogs 11/9/21 7:40 p.m. (Adelaide Oval)