Carlton’s faint hopes of making the AFL finals have vanished, with Adelaide recording a third straight victory to boost its chances of avoiding the wooden spoon.
- The Crows have won three matches inside the space of two weeks
- Their victory was set up by a superb first half, having established a 44-point lead by the main break
- Bryce Gibbs was sent out a winner against his former club in his final AFL match
The Crows, winless for more than a year before this month, have now won three matches in 13 days after a brilliant first half set up their 10.12 (72) to 8.8 (56) win over the Blues at Carrara.
Lachlan Sholl (two goals, five inside 50s, 24 touches) dominated the opening quarter to set the tone, while Elliot Himmelberg (two goals) and Shane McAdam (one) were threats up front.
The Crows are still bottom of the ladder with one round remaining in the home-and-away season, but are now level with North Melbourne on 12 points.
The victory sent the retiring Bryce Gibbs out a winner against his former club, which needed a win to have any chance of qualifying for the finals.
The Blues kicked just one goal in the first half to trail by 44 points at the main break.
There were finally signs of life late in the third term when captain Patrick Cripps kicked a stunning goal, having surged through traffic before turning his defender inside out to spark their comeback.
But the Blues ran out of time as the Crows helped celebrate Gibbs’s AFL career in winning style.
Gibbs had 27 disposals in the victory, Rory Sloane selflessly offloading to him in the final moments for the fairytale finish, only for his shot at goal to sail just wide.
The veteran midfielder, who played 231 matches for the Blues, announced this week Sunday’s match would be his last in the AFL.
Traded to the Crows in 2017, the All-Australian had played just three matches for the club this year but was “happy to go out on his own terms”.
“It was a really special day and to get the win even better,” Gibbs said before being chaired off the ground.
“They’re my best mates, some of them were in my wedding party, so to share the last game together was pretty special.
“Hopefully fans at home can see that [young talent] coming to the fore the last couple of weeks … three on the trot now. It’s exciting times ahead for the Crows.
“You grind away all year … it’s great to see some reward for the boys.”
The Crows finish their season at home to Richmond next Saturday, while the Blues face Brisbane at the Gabba.
Source: AFL NEWS ABC