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Swans 2018 ends at hands of Giants

Michael Whiting  September 8, 2018 6:40 PM

Polished Paps all class Swan Tom Papley slots a brilliant goal on the run from just inside 50m

Greater Western Sydney has ended the season of its arch-rival by dismantling Sydney by 49 points in Saturday's elimination final at the SCG.

After a tight first quarter, the Giants dominated for the rest of the game, putting the foot down with eight consecutive goals either side of half-time to run out 10.19 (79) to 4.6 (30) winners.

They will now play the loser of Saturday night's qualifying final between West Coast and Collingwood and take some real belief into the contest.

It's the second time in three seasons GWS has beaten the Swans in a final, and this time was even more comprehensive than the 36-point win in 2016.

Sydney did not kick a goal between the seven-minute mark of the second quarter and the 23-minute mark of the last.

Its four goals – two of which came in the dying minutes - was its lowest score as the Sydney Swans in a final.

The win was even more meritorious considering GWS played the final three quarters without midfield prime mover Josh Kelly who suffered a right knee injury just before quarter-time.

Kelly had the knee strapped and tried running and cycling on the stationary bike to get back on the field but did not return.

It made little difference in the slippery conditions though as the Giants flexed their muscles, overpowering their crosstown rivals in almost every category.

They won the disposals 415-337 and more significantly contested footy 163-125 and the inside 50s 63-39.

They had winners all over the ground, but perhaps none was better than Toby Greene, who showed no ill-effects of his disrupted season with a best-afield performance.

Coming back from a hamstring injury that cost him the final three weeks of the season, Greene gathered 27 disposals, kicked three goals and was a constant menace forward of centre.

He was at his niggly best and totally outpointed Zak Jones, taking nine marks to add to a stellar performance.

His third-quarter bomb from outside 50 was the first nail in Sydney's coffin.

Greene wasn't the only good news story as Zac Williams (Achilles) and Brett Deledio (calf) also justified the faith in them shown by coach Leon Cameron.

Playing his first game for the year Williams was important, particularly early, with his 23 touches, while Deledio also justified his selection with 22 disposals.

Lachie Whitfield (29) shook the problems of his two quiet games against the Swans earlier this season, while Callan Ward (29, 17 contested) and Stephen Coniglio (27, 13 contested) helped control the contest in the trenches.

It was a dismal exit to the season for the Swans, who remarkably lost their seventh home game for the season and barely fired a shot.

After battling a hip injury to make himself available, Lance Franklin could hardly move laterally and was easily outpointed by Giants skipper Phil Davis.

Franklin took just two marks and went goalless.

But he was far from the main problem. 

Truthfully, the Giants could have won by more such was their dominance.

Josh Kennedy (27 touches) and Dan Hannebery (24) battled hard, but the Swans simply had no answers.

SYDNEY                                           1.4    2.4      2.6      4.6 (30)
GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY      2.3    4.7    7.11    10.19 (79)       

GOALS
Sydney: Papley 2, Parker, Ronke
Giants: Greene 3,Cameron 2, Himmelberg 2, Coniglio, de Boer, Ward

BEST 
Sydney: Kennedy, Parker, Heeny, Cunningham
Giants: Davis, Whitfield, Greene, Coniglio, Himmelberg, Ward, Haynes

INJURIES 
Sydney: Nil
Giants: Josh Kelly (knee)

Reports: Nil

Umpires: Margetts, Stevic, Williamson

Official crowd: 40,350 at the SCG

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