Hawthorn win by 20 points
John Townsend and Trevor Rollinson returned after missing two weeks with a broken hand and pulled hamstring respectively. Robert McKenzie and George Lakes were omitted for the match against the top of the table Hawks.
On paper Melbourne were outclassed, but they played just as well as their opponents in the first quarter and were only left well behind thanks to Hawthorn making better of their goalscoring opportunities.
With the game nearly over at quarter time the Demons did well to remain so close and to outscore Hawthorn for the rest of the game but the damage had already been done. The heavy conditions of the ground helped slow the quick Melbourne side enough to make them easy prey for the Hawks. Melbourne hadn’t been helped by a state game two days earlier and the centre being left uncovered on the Sunday night, leaving the middle of the ground a mud heap.
Five goals clear at three-quarter time Hawthorn coach John Kennedy told Ian Ridley that his side could still win, and with the Hawks 43 points in front 12 minutes into the final term the Demons slammed on four goals in a row making the Hawthorn coach's statement oddly prophetic.
Sullivan, Molloy and Clark were Melbourne's best. Townsend (thigh) was replaced by McKenzie in the second quarter. Peter Sinclair was an unused reserve.
Hawthorn 13.8 d. Melbourne 8.11
Goals - Carr 3, Colcott 3, Lakes 1, McDonald 1
Best - Foster, Hodges, Carr
Melbourne 13.11 d. Hawthorn 10.3
Goals - Dilnot 3, Brewer 2, Hamblin 1, McGuinness 1, Moore 1, Taylor 1, O'Kane 1, Smith 1, Tesoriero 1, Woods 1
Best - Kerley, Conley, Dilnot
Age - 11/06/1971
Age - 15/06/1971
Football Record R12 1971
Inside Football - June 1971