Port Adelaide win by 51 points
Last Game as coach
Melbourne's first match against the Power was the last for coach Neale Balme. The former coach of the year had seen his season destroyed by injuries and a night where his side managed just three goals was the final straw for Joseph Gutnick who, despite public support for Balme from Chief Executive Cameron Schwab, sacked him during the week.
Without any other options Balme was forced to set his forward line up around Jeff Farmer and Sean Charles, but without marking targets Melbourne were unable to score a goal in the first half. It didn't help when they lost Charles to injury in the first quarter, but having not kicked a goal since the seven minute mark of the third term the week before, they failed to boot one until eight minutes into the third quarter when Leigh Newton converted a set shot.
The Demons chipped the ball around from side to side waiting for forward options to present themselves, but there were none and it led to a terrible standard match. Melbourne's negative tactics saw them have more kicks than their opposition but most were just passes from one side of the ground to another as they fell to their eighth straight defeat.
During the match Gavin Wanganeen was accused of racially abusing Jim Stynes, but Stynes chose not to press charges with the AFL.
Carlton 18.13.121 d. Melbourne 11.12.78
Goals - Robertson 2, David Cockatoo-Collins 2, Black 2, Irving 2, Bishop 1, Finnochiaro 1, Ward 1
Best - Robertson, Winterton, Black
Age - 23/05/1997
Age - 28/05/1997
Football Record R10 1997