Melbourne win by 9 points
Best and Fairest
32 - Anthony Ingerson
30 - Brad Green
26 - Andrew Leoncelli
20.5 - Cameron Bruce
19.5 - Adem Yze
After having lost to the Blues by a whopping 98 points in Round 13, it looked at three quarter time as if the Demons were going down to a more honourable but still heavy defeat in the first week of the finals. Dead and buried a few minutes into the last quarter the Demons stormed home for a memorable finals win.
Carlton beat the Demons in every way concievable except for the on the scoreboard. With memories of their thumping win in round 13 still fresh they started favourites, despite Melbourne's recent good form, but the difference was this time the Blues failed to take their chances and were punished.
In the second quarter David Schwarz had run into an open goal and held the ball aloft to the crowd. It seemed to rebound on him when the Blues kicked six of the next seven goals.
Despite that they still enjoyed a 21 point lead at three-quarter time and looked set to hold on and earn a week's break. McDonald and Green had goaled just before the break to drag the margin back from a game high 31 points but despite a fearful spray from Neale Daniher the Blues still looked good, but they didn't count on being outrun by the young Demons from there on. Brad Green played the game of his young career in kicking four goals and was pivotal in the final term comeback along with fellow rookie Cameron Bruce. Green had been thrown into the forward line in the second quarter after Jeff Farmer had failed to fire. Farmer, Neitz, Woewodin and Schwarz were all down on their best but with the kids running riot the impossible comeback was still alive.
It was Green who started the comeback with the first goal of the last quarter after a minute, and then when he got another two minutes later the game was well and truly alive. Bruce got a goal at the seven minute mark and the margin was under a goal. The game was thrown into a nine minute stalemate until Adem Yze kicked a soccer goal to give the Demons the lead before Green got another. Carlton then kicked two goals to wrest the lead back before Leoncelli and Bruce goalled to win the match.
The cliffhanger win gave Melbourne a week off and a trip straight to the Preliminary Final. Best were Yze, Green and Anthony McDonald.
The importance of having avoided a loss in Round 22 and a match against Essendon was underlined when the Bombers demolished the Kangaroos by 125 points in the other Qualifying Final.
Herald Sun - 14/08/2000
Herald Sun - 14/08/2000
SportsToday - 14/08/2000
Blueseum match report