Collingwood win by 9 points
Frank Williams (5th game)
Melbourne put themselves back in the race for fourth place with a shock victory over top of the table Carlton a week earlier and now only needed to topple the Magpies on their home turf to sneak back in to the September action. In front of the Governor of Victoria (and acting Governor General) Lord Huntingfield and Chief Justice of the High Court, Sir John Latham, the two sides put on an epic encounter with the prize of a spot in the finals on offer to the winner. Even a wind that often kept the ball congested on one side of the ground didn't detract from the spectacle.
The fairytale finish wasn't to be, but Melbourne gave a good account of themselves. They were the better team in the air, only falling short when the ball hit the ground. They broke down across half-forward, and the important Gordon Jones struggled to get a kick at half-back, but the margin was never more than a handful of points.
With the use of the wind in the first quarter, the home side was wasteful under strong pressure from the Demon defence. Down the other The Pies' backmen gifted Melbourne their first goal through a defensive error. Late in the term scores were level at 1.7 to 2.1, before Collingwood kicked two quick goals, including Ron Todd's 100th of the season. Against the breeze, the Pies narrowly improved their lead before half time, getting out to 18 points in front before LaFontaine set up a late Baggott goal.
Firebrand speeches by the coaches ensured a tough game after the break, and the margin was down to six when Baggott kicked two. A melee broke out after Jack Mueller was felled, and shortly after scores were level. The gap extended to 19 again by the end of the quarter, and with the atmosphere inside Victoria Park at fever pitch, Melbourne slowly clawed their way back until they were just six points behind with a few minutes left - knowing that a draw wouldn't be good enough to see them qualify for the finals.
As time ticked away Melbourne kicked three behinds, including one to Percy Beames which landed in the goalsquare but bounced through for a point. Collingwood went down the other end where a split Ron Todd mark allowed Des Fothergill to crumb the winning goal. Beames was wasteful, kicking 1.6 and another on the full.
Best were Mueller, Wartman and Lock. Truscott was 19th man.
Collingwood 6.15 d. Melbourne 6.10
Australasian gives the crowd as 28,500.