Blues win after the siren thriller
A goal after the final siren from Jack Newnes has given Carlton a controversial last gasp victory over Fremantle at Optus Stadium on Saturday night.
With seconds remaining on the clock, Dockers forward Matt Taberner was penalised for deliberate out of bounds, Carlton defender Sam Docherty awarded a free kick on centre wing.
He was subsequently met high after playing on by Docker Andrew Brayshaw, leading to a down the ground free kick to Newnes despite the Blues co-captain’s kick slewing out on the full.
Newnes then slotted his shot from beyond the boundary line from 35 metres out to win the game for Carlton, 5.10 (40) to 5.6 (36).
It was the only goal of a scrappy final term, helping the Blues to their fifth win of the season and keeping their finals hopes alive.
With both teams heading in at 4-6 it loomed as a circuit breaker for both club’s seasons, Fremantle bursting out of the blocks with three goals to nil in the first term.
Matt Taberner continued his outstanding recent form with the game’s opening goal after nine minutes, goals to Michael Frederick and Rory Lobb giving Justin Longmuir’s men a handy advantage in wet conditions.
Carlton hit back in the second term, gaining more territory through the work of their midfield, led by Ed Curnow, Patrick Cripps and Sam Walsh.
Levi Casboult snapped a goal after showing brute strength from a boundary throw in, before second gamer Matt Cottrell also snapped truly.
Taberner had his second when he outmuscled Jacob Weitering in his full forward goal square, Fremantle leading by 11 points at the main break.
The Blues had control early in the second half with a goal to young gun Walsh, but didn’t capitalise on their opportunities to kick 2.5 to Fremantle’s 1.1, Taberner capitalising on a Liam Jones dropped mark to kick his third major for the Dockers.
The last quarter was full of controversial umpiring decisions for both sides, but neither team could kick a goal to make a mark on the scoreboard, as the game entered it’s final moments.
Harry McKay and Liam Jones both fluffed chances to win the game, before Newnes took his chance in the most remarkable of circumstances after the final siren.
Ed Curnow was outstanding for the Blues with 33 disposals, his side’s best player while Cripps (24) and Walsh (24 and a goal) were able allies in midfield.
Luke Ryan’s magnificent form continued for Fremantle with 24 disposals and 5 marks, skipper Nat Fyfe with 21 touches in a vintage midfield display.
Dockers coach Justin Longmuir wouldn't be drawn in to comment on the late umpiring decisions that went against his team.
"I'm really proud of our effort. The players are flat but we'll get around them and there are things we could have done to avoid that situation." he said.
The Blues will head to Darwin for Sir Doug Nicholls Indigenous Round next Friday to play Gold Coast in round 13, while Fremantle faces Sydney at Optus Stadium.
IMAGE: The Age.