Melbourne win by 14 points
Goalkickers: Peter Williamson 4, Taylor 3, Smith 2, Anderson 2, Harrold, Conley 1, Cumming 1, Brewer 1
Despite a blistering comeback from the Bombers, Melbourne held on to victory despite kicking just 1.3 in the last quarter. Peter Williamson had dominated in the ruck and helped Melbourne to a 30 point lead at 3/4 time but they only narrowly held on in the face of the Essendon onslaught.
The Demons had the advantage of the return of Williamson and Stephen Kerley from making their senior debuts the week earlier, and that Essendon's Reserves were playing on the same day so were able to take some of their Under 19s playing stock. They raced away at the start of the first and second quarters, but both times tired and allowed Essendon back into the game.
After a half time talk from coach Brian Gray they carried on through the third quarter and opened a big lead, but their aerial supremacy was countered by strong tackling and the margin was rapidly reeled in.
The win put Melbourne into the Grand Final.
Other players included Anderson, Brewer, Conley, Dilnot, Queay, MacDonald, Martin, McGuiness, Smith Tassell, Woods
Age - 13/09/1971
Inside Football - 11/09/1971
Inside Football - 18/09/1971