Here we’re, we’ve made it. After a long and odd old season of AFL, we’re down to the last two teams ahead of tonight’s 2020 AFL grand final.
We started without the crowds in attendance, a unfamiliar appearance. Quarters shortened to 16 minutes, Round 2 postponed for more than two weeks with an whole fixture re-arrangement.
Teams travelling and staying in hubs, audiences of very tiny numbers and no matches in Victoria later Round 5. )
The Richmond Tigers along with also the Geelong Cats will confront at the AFL grand final to be performed out Melbourne. Instead, they’ll play tonight’s grand final in the Gabba in Brisbane.
Last week I predicted that we’d view a replay of this 2004 grand final between Port Adelaide and Brisbane, how wrong I had been.
Richmond stunned Port at a low-scoring thriller, holding on by six factors to make it for their next grand final in four decades.
Geelong broke their prelim hoodoo, outclassing an inexperienced finals group in Brisbane by 40 points, to create their first grand final in nine decades.
Most significantly, those sides met in last year’s preliminary final.
Geelong headed by 21 points at halftime that was unlike Richmond. But that the Tigers discovered their mojo from the next quarter and also kicked five consecutive goals to begin the next quarter.
It was triggered by Tom Lynch’s dominance at the forward line and it set the basis to their 19-stage win. Of class, subsequently Richmond proceeded to embarrass the Giants and take out the 2019 premiership.
Tomorrow, Richmond will have the opportunity to win back-to-back episodes for the first time since 1973-74 and win their third in four decades. For that the Cats, they have the opportunity to win their first grand final because 2011, if they cared for Collingwood by 38 points to win their third flag in five decades.
When those sides met earlier in the calendar year, Richmond were too great to get Geelong again. Jack Riewoldt led the way with four objectives, and Richmond maintained the Cats to just one target for the first few quarters. They Easily obtained a 26-stage win.
Richmond fought from the first week of finals without Tom Lynch up ahead and obtained outclassed by Brisbane. Lynch kicked three goals in the past weeks and required seven marks to help strengthen Richmond’s forward line.
Richmond will probably be glad to get him form ahead of the major battle.
Tom Hawkins was shaky before goal in the very first week of finals when Geelong confronted Port. He kicked 0.5 as Geelong went by 16 points at a real instance of what might have been. The past fourteen days he’s shaken off the shackles, kicking four aims Geelong’s embarrassment of Collingwood plus a key two aims in Geelong’s prelim win over Brisbane.
If that the Cats will be to cause the angry, he’ll want to be on fire.
For Geelong, this game means a lot for a few important players. Gary Ablett will have his final opportunity to win a premiership following a magic, 18-year career.
Tonight would probably be his 357th and last match, in a profession where he’s attained two premierships, in 2007 and in 2009 where he won the Brownlow Medal. He would really like to cap his fantastic career with a third premiership, as he will be remembered as one of the greats of the sport.
It is also a massive opportunity for Patrick Dangerfield to win his flag. Tonight’s grand final will probably go a long way in fixing the long-term legacies of Dustin Martin and Patrick Dangerfield as human greats, however the stats point to the Richmond celebrity as the ideal player to take the field tonight.
Martin ranks third in the contest for AFL Player Ratings, while Dangerfield comes from eighth. They would be the central characters in their own club’s opportunities and maintain on the top two slots at the Norm Smith Medal betting.
The gap is, Martin is here before and has a great grand final day album — two looks, two flags and 2 Norm Smiths. He gets the chance to make history tomorrow when he becomes the match’s only triple Norm Smith medallist, but the appetite are also there for Dangerfield to receive his original winner’s trophy.
Geelong nevertheless have a couple players around out of their final premiership win in 2011. Joel Selwood, naturally, combined with Tom Hawkins and Harry Taylor.
Richmond are the favourites, it’s highly probable with all the leadership of Dusty, Lynch and Riewoldt they could kick a winning score, however Geelong have lots of motives to result in an upset. Especially if Gary Ablett can raise one final time, Dangerfield could be about fire and Hawkins may hold his guts down forwards and kick right.
One thing is for certain, it’ll be an amazing contest.
Geelong will recall that 2019 prelim as a motivation to avenge the loss, break a nine-year drought and ship off Ablett using a fairy tale premiership.
While Richmond’s latest grand closing experiences will inform a narrative, as they seem the most powerful side in the contest, they arrived from third in their past two premierships and locate themselves in this position again ahead of their big day.
So sit back and revel in a distinctive grand final, played in unknown land.