GWS ease to comfortable win over Demons

Harry Himmelberg scored five goals for GWS in their comfortable win over the Demons.
Harry Himmelberg scored five goals for GWS in their comfortable win over the Demons.

They haven't quite consigned their MCG woes but GWS showed that winning comfortably at the ground is possible after a 26 point AFL victory over Melbourne.

The Giants registered a 14.10 (94) to 10.8 (68) result on Sunday, and dominated for three quarters of the match in what looked like a glorified training run.

But a seven-goal splash by the home side in the final quarter narrowed the margin as the Giants eased to only their third win in 17 trips to the MCG.

It was their first at the ground since a 16 point victory against Collingwood in round two last season.

Giants coach Leon Cameron said while happy with aspects of the win, the last quarter couldn't be ignored.

"It was pleasing for three quarters. Clearly we played some good footy, but it was disappointing in the last when they stepped up the tempo a bit and wanted to make a statement. We dropped away, but overall we came to play," Cameron said.

"There's clearly areas in our game that have to get better because they resurfaced in the last quarter.

"We have to keep working on the basic fundamentals to get it right because we gave up a 50-odd points lead and that's disappointing."

Josh Kelly (31 possessions) and Harry Himmelberg (a career-best five goals) were the standouts as Nick Haynes marshalled a defence that limited the Demons to just one goal in the first half.

Melbourne fans could only ponder the extent of the damage and their dismal 3-7 record, ruckman Max Gawn a rare bright light in centre bounce duels and some timely marks.

The Giants effectively had the contest wrapped up by half-time, such was their control of the ball and lack of opposition pressure. They led the inside 50 entries by more than double in the first half, 34-16, and the return of only six goals was more their own wastefulness.

Their 35 point margin ballooned to 57 by the end of the third quarter, leaving the Demons only left to save some face in the final term.

"We got smashed around the footy early. They were outstanding around the footy and showed up our midfield group early in the game," Melbourne coach Simon Goodwin said.

"To our players' credit they stayed connected and to fight back was really pleasing. We have got some things to work on, but we'll keep progressing and there's a group of guys to come back this week."

Australian Associated Press