The Sydney Swans suffered a 14-point defeat to St Kilda at the SCG on Thursday night with Swans senior coach John Longmire putting it down to a slow start and basic errors and execution that cost the side.

The first quarter ended with the Swans having a scoreless opening term before goals to Hayden McLean and Tom Papley saw the side click into gear in the second quarter.

Lance Franklin moved into fourth spot overall on the all-time goal kicking leaderboard behind only Tony Lockett (1360), Gordon Coventry (1299) and Jason Dunstall (1254), another eight minutes later before Papley kicked a major in quick succession. However, St Kilda went on to kick four goals in a row through the second and third quarters and eventually two goals in two minutes in the last quarter on the back of two 50m penalties that almost ended up being the difference.

“It probably started in the first quarter,” Longmire said.

“We probably didn’t take the ground position in slippery conditions like we should have and it took to quarter time before we got going and play a bit more front-half footy.

“In the last quarter, we needed to run and carry in uncontested possession but we were just a bit too slow, we lost ground position and when we got possession, we were deep which meant we didn’t get that flow to get the ball in our front half.

“We lived in our back half a bit too much and they scored 3-4 goals from repeats.

“In the second quarter, we played more surge footy, got the ball forward and in the contest in the slippery conditions it was pretty good,” Longmire added.

“After half time, we were a bit slow out of the blocks, their pressure was very good, but we made some basic errors, particularly with ball in hand that really cost us.”


Swans defender Nick Blakey was forced off the ground early in the third quarter and quickly subbed out of the game, although the 23-year-old passed a head injury assessment test on the bench.

Blakey was involved in a tackle from St Kilda forward Dan Butler.

Longmire revealed post-game that Blakey had carried a toe injury into the game that hampered him before the incident, which contributed to the Swans' decision to make the sub rather than waiting for him to pass a concussion test.

"No, he passed his HIA he was fine in the end," Longmire told reporters on Thursday night.

"It was going to take 15 minutes by the time he was assessed and allowed back on the ground, which was pretty critical at that point. 

"He had a toe injury coming into the game and we had to get moving; it was a pretty important part of the game; 15 minutes is a good slab of time. 

"With his toe being sore we made a change. It was only last week that he hurt it and he came into the game a bit sore. Hopefully he will be OK next week."