Melbourne win by 2 points
Melbourne inflicted the reigning premier's first defeat since the 1966 semi-final to improve their record to 2-1 and give supporters some home that the dark days were behind them.
Norm Smith gave his side an old fashioned fire and brimstone address before the match, but it was Brian Dixon played the most interesting role of the day. With a State Election being held on the same day the Member for St Kilda in the Legislative Assembly was simultaneously trying to be reelected in his seat and beat the Saints. He'd started the day touring polling booths, rushed to the football to held Melbourne over the line, and then back to celebrate being reelected to Parliament.
In a tight match that ebbed and flowed as each team had their use of the wind Melbourne opened up a lead of just under three goals at the last change and braced for the inevitable Saints comeback. When Carl Ditterich kicked the first two goals of the final term almost immediately after the restart it looked like the home side would steamroll to victory.
It was then that Melbourne dug in their heels and played an amazing 18 minutes of defensive football holding the margin under a goal. Ross Smith hit the post for the home team, and Ditterich missed another kickable shot. On the rare occassions that the Demon defence was letting St Kilda in they were letting themselves down. When Bernie Massey took a screamer in the defensive goal square to stop another attack Melbourne were home.
It was only the second loss for the Saints since they moved to Moorabbin two years before.
Best were Williams, Mann and Johnson. Alves (bruised thigh) was replaced by Foster in the last quarter. Langford was replaced by Ken Osborne in the last quarter.
Melbourne 12.11 d. St Kilda 11.12
Goals - Jones 3, Sullivan 2, Dowsing 2, Peake 1, Knape 1, Walker 1, Murnane 1
Best - Bowden, D. Feldman, Jones
St Kilda 14.26 d. Melbourne 6.13
Goals - Horner 1, McGuinness 1, Deas 1, Maygar 1, Hill 1, Reside 1
Best - Horner, Aubrey, Reside