Sydney win by 44 points
1 - Alastair Clarkson
Alastair Clarkson (also with North Melbourne)
As part of the AFL's centenary celebrations, the surviving sides from Round 1, 1897 played the same teams again. South Melbourne had long since moved to Sydney, and 100 years later the result was reversed with the Swans winning easily.
It ended a long week for Melbourne, who had been forced into damage control when Neale Balme was quoted as describing his side as "no bloody good" after their hundred point loss to West Coast a week earlier. This time his side avoided humiliation, despite only kicking five goals. They did well to keep the Swans to 12 goals without key defender Paul Prymke and midfielder Craig Turley. Anthony Ingerson won praise from Neil Balme for "a bloody good job" on Tony Lockett, who was restricted to six goals.
Sydney's defence was also miserly, but in this case they didn't have much to compete against. Jeff Farmer kicked the first goal of the game, and Melbourne held the visitors out for the next 15 minutes before conceding three in a row. From there they could barely put scoreboard pressure on, and their 13 point half time deficit was generous considering the gulf in class between the sides. In the third quarter the Demons went inside 50 only five times, while at the other end Jim Stynes was regularly being battered trying to fill a hole in front of Lockett.
The Swans were 45 points in front at the final change, and took their foot off the accelerator from there, cruising to an easy victory despite being outscored by a point. Injured captain Garry Lyon had blasted his teammates at the break and they held together, unlike the previous week when West Coast doubled their margin in the final term.
Balme said, "We weren't too worried what it looked like; we were just trying to compete and hang in there."
Best were Clarkson, B. Lovett and Obst. Stynes had a cut hand.
Sydney 12.13.85 d. Melbourne 9.12.66
Goals - Doyle 4, Sampson 2, Yze 2, Bradly 1
Best - Price, Bunning, Ormond-Allen
Age - 10/05/1996
Age - 12/05/1996
Age - 13/05/1996
Football Record R8 1996