Sydney have produced a huge second-quarter turn-around to take a 7.4 (40) to 4.6 (30) lead over Hawthorn at halftime of Saturday’s AFL grand final at the MCG.
A late burst in the first quarter put the Hawks 19 points up at the opening change and it could easily have been more.
Hawks Sam Mitchell and Brad Sewell put their side well on top in the midfield and star forward Lance Franklin racked up touches, although kicked only 1.2 for the term.
But the Swans fought back superbly, kicking six goals to none for the second quarter, with Hawthorn’s only scoring shot of the term a behind to David Hale, although Lance Franklin blasted another good chance out on the full nearing halftime.
The Swans lifted in the midfield through Ryan O’Keefe, Dan Hannebery and Josh Kennedy and hit the front 14 minutes into the term with a fine rebounding goal which started with a pinpoint pass by Nick Malceski from defence and ended with Sam Reid kicking truly from 50m.
That was followed by two majors in four minutes from former West Coast and Richmond fringe forward Mitch Morton, an unlikely hero given he had struggled for regular senior games for the Tigers and was playing just his fifth game for the Swans.
Both came from snaps, after Swans co-captain Adam Goodes dished the ball out of congestion in the forward line.
The Hawks had the chance to get one back late in the second term, after Franklin broke free of opponent Ted Richards to mark 40m out, but he sprayed his kick badly.
Earlier, the Hawks had wasted chances in the first term, before moving clear in time-on.
Among the first-quarter highlights, Sydney’s Lewis Jetta produced a blistering four-bounce run from the back pocket to the wing, with Hawk speedster Cyril Rioli unable to run him down then giving away a relayed free kick after Jetta disposed of the ball.
Sydney’s Craig Bird missed the resultant scoring chance and Lewis Roberts-Thomson missed another soon after.The Hawks made them pay with snapped goals to Luke Breust and Jack Gunston in the dying minutes of the first term to give their side a 19-point quarter-time lead and seemingly the momentum heading into the second term.