The SportingJournal

Swans soar over Tigers

Sydney has firmed in the race for the top four after defeating Richmond by 47 points, while the Tigers now find themselves only two games clear in the eight with five rounds to go.

It was the Tigers who got off to the fast start, out to a two goal lead early in the match, starting with a long range running goal to Matt White. However it wasn’t to last as the Swans started to step up the pressure on their opponents, as well as burning the Tigers going forward with quick rebounding scores. Sydney pilled on four unanswered majors in the space of six minutes to take a two goal lead themselves heading towards the end of the first term.

With the Tigers struggling to hit the scoreboard, they did manage to finish the term strongly with two late goals against the flow of play, to see scores at 33 a piece by quarter time.

The second term was all Sydney’s, with the Swans looking capable of putting the margin beyond doubt; however they failed to capitalize with 3.4 for the term.

Brandon Ellis had the chance to undo all of the Swans hard work, but he missed a shot at goal after the siren that would have seen the margin at just a minor 10 points.

Although the score would indeed be narrowed to 10 points early in the third term with Tigers spearhead Jack Riewoldt kicking two in a row for the visiting side, who now looked capable of causing an upset. It wasn’t to be for the Tigers though, as the Swans went up a notch with their pressure, giving their opponents no space or time across the ground, and at the same time seeming to have plenty of their own.

The Swans big men proved headaches for a Richmond defence lacking in height, with Kurt Tippet slotting his third for the game, Pyke his first, while Jesse White had four for the game to three quarter time, due to a mismatch on Ricky Petterd.

With the game almost out of the Tigers reach at the final change they would have been looking to defend their healthy percentage, which could prove important come the conclusion of round 23. They did not achieve this; Sydney was relentless for the whole four quarters with a strong mixture of pressure, and attacking play, displaying the skills of a team who looks very capable of achieving back to back Premierships, with players like, Goodes, Jetta, and Reid still to return to the already strong side.

For a reigning premier to be missing so many players, but still be so damaging is scary for the rest of the league heading towards September.

The Swans young players appear just as impressive and effective as those stars currently out of the team. Jed Lamb, Dane Rampe, Brandon Jack, and Harry Cunningham showing plenty of promise for the home team, and will provide strong depth for Sydney in their finals campaign.

As for Richmond – they would have learnt a few lessons that should help steel them for the toughness of finals if they do indeed break their drought. This is however no certainty, as the Tigers face a tough final five weeks coming up with games against Hawthorn, Brisbane, Carlton, GWS, and Essendon.

Cover image credit: Sydney Swans/Instagram

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