Melbourne win by 4 points
On a heavy track, and in front of their home fans, the Hawks looked good for their 16 point lead at three-quarter time but the next thirty minutes saw them drop their guard and Melbourne took over.
Having been quiet on the wing all day, Brian Dixon was switched to the other side of the ground and responded with 11 kicks in the final term. The Hawks still led well into time on, but with two minutes left Hassa Mann goalled with a miracle kick from an acute angle on the boundary line to put Melbourne in front. The Hawks couldn't respond and their finals dreams were history. Defeat would have dropped the Demons to third and left them going into the last Saturday of the home and away season needing to win at the Western Oval to guarantee a finals berth, let alone the coveted double chance.
The Demons comeback was all the more remarkable considering that Brian Leahy and Tony Anderson had been put out of the game through injury by half-time. Hassa Mann, Frank Adams, Bryan Kenneally and Frank Davis all suffered injuries as the Demons hit an injury crisis at the worst time of the year.
The win ensured Melbourne would have the double chance in the upcoming finals series.
Best were Crompton, Dixon and Adams.
During the match Hawthorn's John Peck broke his club's VFL goalkicking record.
Melbourne 10.8 d. Hawthorn 9.11
Goals - Andrew 2, Carlson 2, Wood 2, Vearing 1, Lord 1, Slade 1, Lynch 1
Best - Foster, Robbie, Leitch
Melbourne 12.14.86 defeated Hawthorn 7.12.58
Goals - Schultz 4, Stone 2, Wight 2, Russell 1, Reinholdt 1, Feldman 1, McNab 1
Best - Russell, Jones, Millard