Round 8, 1944
Melbourne vs Fitzroy
Saturday 24 June
Venue: Punt Road
Fitzroy win by 25 points
Goalkickers: Fred Fanning 5, Percy Beames 1, Jack Compton 1
Jack Compton (2nd game)
Fanning was left as the lone hand up front for the Demons again, and once more he was Melbourne's only reliable goalkicker as they crashed to defeat. The Demons were strong in the air, mainly thanks to Cordner, but in addition to their weak scoring they were poor passing and handballing around the ground.
On a heavy ground, Fitzroy adapted better, were faster to the ball and surer in their handball. They got the first 19 points of the game before Fanning hit the post to open the scoring for his side. Melbourne was four goals down before Fanning broke through for his side's first, leaving them 15 points down at quarter time.
At the start of the second quarter the Demons showed much brighter form, and Fitzroy's defence were forced to fight to hold them back. In a reverse of the first quarter Melbourne got the first 19 points of the quarter before Fitzroy scored a behind. The lead continued to see-saw for the rest of the quarter before Fitzroy scored last to lead by three at half time.
The first 15 minutes of the third quarter only saw a point to each side, and Fitzroy didn't get the first goal until the 20 minute mark. Their crowded forward play restricted them two goals, but the held the home side goalless to open a 19 point gap. Melbourne didn't get any closer than 15 points, conceding two quick goals to lose.
Best were Smith, Cordner and Fanning. 19th man was Herbert. Fanning's haul of five left him 16 clear at the top of the league's goalkicking list.
Melbourne 12.11 d. Fitzroy 9.13
Sporting Globe - 24/06/1944
Football Record R9 1944