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NEAFL: SUNS overrun, but secure home final

GOLD COAST, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 15:  Jack Bowes kicks during a Gold Coast Suns AFL training session at Metricon Stadium on August 15, 2017 in Gold Coast, Australia.  (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images/AFL Media)

The Sydney Swans have staved off a brave but undermanned Gold Coast Suns, the minor premiers storming away in the second half to take a 67-point win on a blustery Saturday afternoon at Metricon Stadium.

Aliir Aliir (20 disposals, eight marks, three goals) used his versatility with impact, playing back, forward and in the ruck for the Swans, and supported by an elite midfield brigade led his side to a 23.12 (150) to 13.5 (83) win after a shaky start.

The Suns faced a nigh insurmountable task from the outset, taking seven AFL-listed players into a match against a Swans team featuring a whopping 19, needing win to ensure a home final against the NT Thunder.

But despite the loss the Suns still managed to hang onto their home final as the Aspley Hornets defeated the Thunder by 45points.

After surviving a Swans onslaught for the first 10 minutes of the match with just one goal conceded the Suns managed to turn the rest of the term into an arm wrestle, not allowing the Swans to break away into space, and at quarter time trailed by just two points.

The second term opened up into a shoot-out, but the Swans got the upper hand late and booted 7.3 to 4.2 for the quarter, gaining the ascendency and capitalising on the spirited but inexperienced Suns mistakes.

But the Suns rose early in the third stanza, putting on the first two goals through Will Brodie and Jack Bowes, but the Swans’ Rose – of the James variety – helped the Swans kick into gear with a goal of his own to see Sydney kick into gear once more.

Brayden Crossley (15 disposals, seven tackles, five marks) dominated the hit outs with 59 for the Suns as the Swans shared the ruck duties between Toby Pink, Michael Talia and Aliir, the Academy prospect turning in another strong performance in the lead up to the AFL Draft.

Will Brodie (39 disposals, six marks, four tackles) and Jack Bowes (32 disposals) were also solid performers for a Suns side missing a raft of regulars.

The Suns will host the NT Thunder in a do-or-die elimination final blockbuster at Metricon Stadium at 12.00pm on Saturday August 26. Details are currently being finalised and will be released on shortly.


Gold Coast Suns v Sydney Swans at Metricon Stadium

SYDNEY 3.3 10.6 17.9 23.12 (150)
GOLD COAST 3.1 7.3 12.4 13.5 (83)

Sydney: S Edwards 4 J Rose 4 A Aliir 3 B Ronke 2 H Carr 2 S Fisher 2 O Florent M Talia T Leonardis H Cunningham J Foote T Pink.
Gold Coast: B Scheer 2 R Davis 2 A Sexton 2 K Boakye W Brodie E Baru S Davidson J Bowes B Crossley B Scott

Sydney: J Rose B Jack T Leonardis A Aliir D Robinson S Fisher.
Gold Coast: J Bowes W Brodie B Scheer R Davis M Rischitelli B Crossley.