Melbourne win by 25 points
While Queen Elizabeth II was at the MCG greeting the captains of Fitzroy and Richmond before their match, the Demons were down Clarendon Street trying to put an early dint in the season of Norm Smith and the Swans.
Melbourne took advantage of the new rule which allowed teams a ten minute warm-up on the ground before each match, but it still took them nearly half the match to come to terms with South in the first clash of the new season. The Swans had stood around doing nothing while the Demons warmed up, and at first it looked as if they had the right idea.
South had their chances to put Melbourne away for good in the first half, but were wasteful and allowed their visitors to stay in the game. Fred Way was dominating in the ruck and the ball was flying inside their 50 at a rapid rate but South's forwards were butchering almost every opportunity to come their way.
By half time the margin was nearly three goals and Melbourne extended it by another goal in each of the last two quarters to run out comfortable victors in their attempts to put the disaster of a 1969 season behind them.
Best were Dillon, Bourke and Davis. Melbourne did not use its replacement players.
Melbourne 15.16 d. South Melbourne 15.11
Goals - D. Campbell 3, Jennings 3, Callery 3, K. Clarke 1, Walker 1, Leary 1, Colcott 1
Best - Mitchell, Campbell, Callery
South Melbourne 18.9.117 d. Melbourne 15.15.105
Goals - Allan 5, Stephenson 4, Roberts 3, Dilnot 1, Macdonald 1, Taylor 1
Best - Theodore, Stephenson, Allan