Crows knock over inaccurate Cats

Adelaide 15.3.93 d Geelong 12.18.90

The Adelaide Crows made Geelong pay for their inaccuracy in front of goal yesterday at Skilled Stadium, defeating Geelong by 3 points. While Geelong somehow managed to score 18 behinds, Adelaide made do with only 3. Although leading by 9 points 12minutes into the final term, the Cats ultimately couldn't hold on. It took a heroic effort from Crows captain and bar brawler Mark "Roo" Ricciuto, who virtually won the game off his own boot, booting 3 consecutive goals from full forward to put the Crows in front by 9 points with less than 2 minutes to go. Geelong struck back after James Kelly, after being smashed to the ground, calmly slotted one through from 45m out, to bring the margin back to 3 points.

Unfortunately this titanic battle for perhaps the final top four position was overshadowed by several ugly incidents involving Geelong members in the exclusive Brownlow stand, and former Geelong and now Adelaide coach, Gary 'Conan' Ayres. While there are obviously two sides to the story, the certainties are that Ayres will be fined (has been sent a Pauline Hanson 'Please Explain'), and that a few rows of premium seats will be removed for season 2003. With seats retailing at over $180 a season (plus an Adult Membership ticket makes over $405 for the package), this will hurt Geelong more than it does the Crows.

After the match Ayres not only swore and made various hand gestures to spectators in the Brownlow stand, he also pointed out the scoreboard, repeatedly, like a drunken fool while making his way off the ground. The jury is still out on how far he was provoked, but certainly there is no excuse for repeatedly attempting to incite riots when the game had already been won.

For the Crows Mark Ricciuto stood out, while for the Cats Cameron Ling made a welcome return for the team, gathering some 29 possessions. Unfortunately he was not very good in front of goal, missing 2 fairly easy shots. Other leading lights were usual suspects in Corey Enright, Joel Corey, and Peter Riccardi. Players to stand up in recent weeks in Paul Chapman, James Rahilly, went missing for much of the game, but in the end the main reason the Cats lost was due to extremely poor kicking.

Match Statistics

David Clarke takes the mark of the day

Gary Ayres remembers where the scoreboard is