Richmond will be hoping to continue its late-season momentum and surge towards an unlikely finals berth when it takes on Hawthorn on Saturday afternoon.
The Tigers (8-8-1, 99.8%) have won five of their past six games under interim coach Andrew McQualter and are within striking distance of the top eight. Fox Footy’s Leigh Montagna told First Crack: “There’s still something left in the Tigers this season.”
The Hawks (5-12, 77.3%) will be hoping to cause a boilover and claim back-to-back wins following their comprehensive victory against North Melbourne last weekend.
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This match gets underway at 1.45pm AEST from the MCG.
Watch it live on Fox Footy (channel 504) from 1pm AEST.
QUARTER-BY-QUARTER MATCH REPORT
There were no late changes for either side, with debutant Matthew Coulthard (Richmond) and Ned Long (Hawthorn) named the starting subs.
Chad Wingard kicked the first goal for Hawthorn as skipper James Sicily had an impressive start to the game, taking three early marks to stamp his authority on the contest.
“This is the big problem,” Fox Footy’s David King said as Richmond struggled to move the ball past Sicily.
“He’s on fire. What a player.”
Then goals to James Worpel, Chad Wingard and Finn Maginness gave Hawthorn an 18-point lead.
“Their handball game from stoppage, the Hawks, is causing huge problems for Richmond already,” King said.
“The Hawks are asking some questions. On counter-punch they’ve been exciting.”
There was a nervous moment for Hawks ruckman Ned Reeves, who’s likely to be scrutinised for a dangerous tackle.
But two late Richmond goals to Dustin Martin and Jacob Hopper helped the Tigers trim Hawthorn’s lead to six points at the first change.
The Tigers then took the lead at the start of the second term when Ben Miller took a strong mark and produced a brilliant checkside goal before Tim Taranto nailed a set-shot attempt.
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