Essendon win by 18 points
An ANZAC Day clash to forget was eventually won by the Bombers after four quarters which at times were heavy going.
The previous year's Grand Finallists could thank the fact that the Demons were just that bit more abysmal than they were for the four points. If Melbourne had curbed their enthusiastic handball before half time and not gotten into so many sticky situations by hand they might have built up an unbeatable lead, but as it was they were wasteful and allowed Essendon back into the match.
Inaccuracy cost the Demons, but one of their key forwards was doing a stirling job at the other end of the ground - Ross Dillon taking 12 marks while playing in the unfamiliar centre half-back role.
Essendon ran out comfortable winners, marginally extending their lead during the third quarter.
Best were Dillon, Sullivan and Clarke. Lakes (torn calf muscle) was replaced by Campbell in the second quarter. Aitken (pulled thigh muscle) was replaced by Weekes at three quarter time.
Melbourne 18.20 d. Essendon 13.16
Goals - Powell 6, Stone 3, Hayes 2, G. Anderson 2, Letcher 2, Clarke 1, Colcott 1, Vagg 1
Best - Clarke, Powell, Stone
Essendon 25.9.159 d. Melbourne 13.17.95
Goals - Wells 5, Callery 3, Stephenson 3, Bird 1, McKenzie 1
Best - Callery, Gowdie, Wells
Age gives the crowd as 35,358
Age - 26/04/1969
Football Record R5 1969