Footscray win by 9 points
Robert B Johnson
Having been almost sure of finishing first three weeks before, the Demons had lost to Collingwood and drawn with Fitzroy. The draw hadn't hurt them due to Carlton losing elsewhere, and a visit to the Western Oval was a chance to further strengthen their position.
They were made heavy favourites by tipsets, but it wasn't to be, and for the third straight week Melbourne came out of a close game without a win.
With Demon captain John Beckwith absent due to a self-imposed exile to the Seconds where he hoped to find form, the lowly, young Bulldogs tore into their opponents with vigour and put them off their natural game. The Demons were disappointingly slow and lost confidence as the match went on.
Ron Barassi won the toss and kicked to the end that was favoured by the cross wind blowing across the Western Oval, but after losing Frank Adams after a heavy clash that left him with a cut over the eye, they only gained a six point advantage by quarter time. The Dogs were better at the start of the second quarter, kicking the first two goals. This prompted a Melbourne comeback, and thye led until the dying minutes when the Dogs retook a slender lead.
Footscray took control of the game in the third, kicking three goals to one. They got a boost when Ted Whitten was clattered in a bump but was able to continue.
The backlines took over at the start of the last quarter, keeping either side from kicking a goal until Rowarth, then Mann, goalled for the Demons to cut the lead to a point. Footscray took over again but Melbourne packed their backline and repelled a number of attacks. They got forward for Tunbridge to kick a point, and with the margin two, the Dogs finally broke through for the sealer.
Pinfold's three goals came in his only match for the season, he had come off the bench to replace Adams in the first quarter. Jones replaced Trevor Johnson (bruised foot) at half time.
Barassi 1.2, Dixon 0.2, R. Johnson 1.3, Mann 2.0, Pinfold 3.1, Ridley 0.1, Rowarth 2.0, Tunbridge 1.2
Melbourne 12.12 d. Footscray 7.5
Goals - Nilsson 4, Crompton 3, Brenchley 2, Buswell 1, Mann 1, Stevens 1
Best - Gleeson, Crompton, Beckwith
Melbourne 13.12 d. Footscray 2.9
Goals - J. Leahy 3, Bosch 3, Russell 2, Jeffrey 2, Miller 1, Anderson 1, Clarke 1
Best - Rolfe, J. Leahy, Edwards