Melbourne win by 13 points
The defending champions were one of the form sides of the competition, while Melbourne's last game saw their 1993 revival halted by a one point loss to Fitzroy. Despite the difference in status between the sides, conditions were ripe for an upset. The Demons were coming off the bye, while West Coast were missing Peter Matera, Ashley McIntosh and Chris Mainwaring.
Six opening quarter goals to the visitors had them in the box seat, before an Allen Jakovich kicked his third with a 60 metre torpedo to keep the margin at 15 points. Jakovich was returning to the side for the first time since Round 1, after a hamstring injury and extended stay in the Reserves.
Melbourne had plenty of chances in the second quarter but kicked 1.8, while West Coast got three goals to extend their lead to 24. The muddy centre of the MCG turned the game into a slog, and the Demons finally found their range again after half time with a four goal to nil third quarter. It made the margin less than a goal at the last change, before Peter Sumich recovered from being held by Phil Gilbert for most of the day to kick two quick goals. The Demons held on, and after 10 minutes a Jakovich set shot from a difficult angle cut the margin to 12. His next goal levelled the scores with a 50 metre shot, prompting a celebratory embrace and kiss to the cheek of brother Glenn. From the centre bounce Garry Lyon goalled on the run, before Andrew Obst played on from a Jakovich for the sealer.
Victory kept Melbourne within range of the top six, while Eagles coach Mick Malthouse described it as "one of our worst losses ever."
Best were Lyon, Stynes and Obst.
Melbourne 19.12.126 d. Essendon 7.6.48
Goals - Keogh 3, Pickering 3, Stretch 3, B. Campbell 2, Doyle 2, Sullivan 1, Simister 1, Dyson 1, Cuthbertson 1, Clark 1, Burgmann 1
Best - Doyle, Robins, Stretch