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2017 Round 1 Centrals vs Eagles

BULLDOGS NEED TO REBOUND
By Robert Laidlaw

Central District showed some promise but was exposed in too many areas to challenge Woodville West Torrens in the opening round of the 2017 SANFL season, culminating in a 47-point loss at Elizabeth.

Even as late as 10 minutes into the final term, the Bulldogs only trailed by 13 points before the floodgates opened and the Eagles powered away.

Overall there wasn't enough accountability, especially at the stoppages and when the opposition set up structures to flow forward to kick goals on the rebound.

With the only three majors of the first term, the Eagles, with a 3-2 to 0-3 lead, laid the foundation of their win, and managed to keep Central at arms length, always having the answers when threatened for the remainder of the contest.

Central controlled most of the second quarter but wasted numerous opportunities with haphazard forward movement, resulting in a return of three goals from nine scoring shots, while the Eagles first three ventures forward saw three majors.

Although recording more scoring shots, the Bulldogs trailed 3-9 to 6-5 at half time, to at least go into the long break with plenty of hope, with the knowledge they had played below par but only trailed by 14 points.

But it was the Eagles that dominated the first 20 minutes of the penultimate term, to blow the lead out to 28 points before a mini-fightback saw the margin reduced back to 14 points at lemons.

Chris Jansen broke the ice with a clever goal 23 minutes into the third quarter, before new recruit John Butcher took a hanger and converted for the goal of the game, 90 seconds later, in the most exciting period of the game for the home side.

And another athletic mark and goal to Butcher early in the final stanza reduced the margin to just seven points and a miraculous victory looked on the books – but it wasn't to be, as a deserving Eagles pulled away.

While several players stood up at various stages of the game to have an impact, it was tough to pick any four-quarter performers.

Darcy Fort worked hard in ruck and was a key to most of the Bulldogs winning clearances, although the opposition seemed to have a couple of huge contributors in this department, nullifying Central's effectiveness in this area.

With his classy position making and clever link work, Jansen was probably the Bulldogs best, while Sam Hanna's first half was outstanding.

Of the new recruits, Josh Glenn showed plenty of promise, Butcher made the most of limited opportunities – if he had received the service the Eagles big forward received, it could have been a different result – and ruckman Jack Hannath will get better as the season progresses.

Now it's about rebounding with a positive result, when Central play North Adelaide at Prospect on Good Friday.
* * * * *

RESULT
Woodville West Torrens 3-2 6-5 8-8 14-13 (97)
Central District  0-3 3-9 5-12 6-14(50)

Best: Jansen, Hanna, D. Fort, T. Schiller, Glenn, Holman.
Goals: Butcher 2, T. Schiller, Stevens, Hoskin, Jansen.

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We're a winning team at Centrals
We're the mighty fighting 'dogs
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League ladder

  1. Eagles
  2. Port Adelaide
  3. Sturt
  4. Norwood
  5. Glenelg
  6. Central District
  7. South Adelaide
  8. Adelaide
  9. North Adelaide
  10. West Adelaide
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