Hawks' feathers fluffed by Crocs

While Manunda were busy fine-tuning their tilt at a premiership at Fretwell Park, Port Douglas were sending a message of their own about an hour north of there. The Hawks blasted out of the blocks, kicking 11 goals in what coach Paul Griffiths described as his side’s best opening quarter of the season.

Holding a 51-point lead, the result was as good as sealed from there despite the Cutters showing far more desperation in the ensuing three stanzas. With such a decisive margin the Hawks were able to try a few things and the game seemed to drift along uneventfully as a result.

It took a three-quarter time announcement to stir the crowd, and the coaches box, out of their stupor.

“Port Douglas 108, 1-0-8, lead Saints 26, 2-6,” the speakers blared.

They eventually won by 76 points – a margin that would surely have been higher if Crocs’ captain Evan Hocking wasn’t rested because of an injury scare in the second half. Port now sit four points clear of Saints in second and boast a superior percentage.

While Saints were missing a handful of their key men, so too were Port Douglas. Members of the Manunda dug-out stopped and had to clarify between themselves if they had heard the update correctly. A margin of that magnitude was surely a surprise, but Griffiths later said it was what he had expected to hear.

“We knew that would happen, Saints have a lot out,” he said. “Obviously if you are going to beat last year’s premiers by that much they’re going to be a good side and every player will wear the jumper with pride. They are a good side, but I doubt any team has their full squad on the paddock at the moment.”

Courtesy of The Cairns Post.


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