Round 15, 1988
Melbourne vs Sydney
Saturday 9 July
Sydney win by 73 points
Goalkickers: Ricky Jackson 2, Sean Wight 2, David Flintoff 1, Alan Johnson 1, Stephen Newport 1, Jim Stynes 1
The Swans turned the form-book completely on its head to keep their hopes of playing finals alive and to mortally wound the Demons' hopes of winning the minor premiership. Melbourne had taken a chance on Alan Johnson and Sean Wight, both of whom had picked up knocks in a State of Origin game during the week, but while both got through the game the team as a whole failed miserably. During the week Sydney had been rocked by the revelations that 10 players were in trouble for unpaid tax.
John Northey described his team's performance as "pathetic all round" but pointed out that he had lost Garry Lyon with an injury from the state game and David Williams who had been kicked in the hand at training. The two losses hardly accounted for the listless, poor performance that his side put in on the day though.
Three goals down at the first break Melbourne didn't take the hint and managed just one goal in the second quarter. Another solitary goal in the third quarter was greeted with six at the other end and the game was over. The Demon defence which had been so rock solid all year allowed stand-in Swan full-forward Glen Coleman to kick five goals from eight shots and after going into three-quarter time more than ten goals down the match was well and truly over.
Sydney's midfield dominance won out and left Melbourne not just out of the race for top spot but not even certain of a double chance or even making the five with just under two months of the season left to play.
Best were Johnson, Jackson and Stynes
Melbourne 5.14.44 d. Sydney 4.9.33
Goals - G. Lovett 1, Allardice 1, Rohde 1, Smith 1, Stoney 1
Best - Campbell, J. Viney, Johns
Age - 08/07/1988
Canberra Times - 10/07/1988
Age - 11/07/1988
Football Record R16 1988