The Sydney Swans completed the hard task of flying to Perth and defeating the West Coast Eagles at Patersons Stadium on Sunday, destroying the enemy in a top of table clash 18.13(121)-10.9(69).
Sydney overcame an Eagles’ 18-game undefeated streak and home while maintaining the league’s top spot. Rival West Coast dropped from second position down to fifth.
The Eagles came in undermanned; they were without star defender Beau Waters, Ashton Hams was a late withdrawal and Luke Shuey missed due to suspension.
To further complicate matters, Jack Darling was forced out of the game with hamstring tightness, further decimating an already weakened attack that was already missing it’s top four goal kickers from 2011 and their leading scorer this season, Josh Hill (out with a hamstring).
Rucks Shane Mumford and Mike Pyke were fantastic in neutralising the double-headed monster of Dean Cox and Nic Naitanui and the midfield played a crucial role in the second half blowout. Daniel Hannebery was a monster with 42 disposals and eight inside 50s while Kieran Jack, Ryan O’Keefe and Josh Kennedy combined for 95 disposals and 25 clearances.
The Eagles got off to a hot start, leading by three goals and easing concerns about their inability to kick goals, but Sydney’s midfield dominance quickly got them back in the game and in front, finishing the first quarter with a 31-27 lead. Jetta got them going using his trademark speed to kick on the move from fifty and Sam Reid added a couple in a five goal quarter for the Swans.
They’d score five more in the second and fourth quarters while the Eagles could only manage six goals after quarter-time.
Both clubs face tough tests in Round 17; the Eagles take on the second placed Adelaide Crows next weekend while Sydney receive the red hot Saints.