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Rampaging Tayla Harris offers Fremantle as sacrifice to the gods in AFLW Prelim slaughterhouse

Updated: Sep 24, 2019

By James Fitzpatrick

Harris taks a pack mark | Photo: Jack Banister
Harris takes a pack mark | Photo: Jack Banister

Maybe it was the hot weather but I suspect it was pure fire I could feel emanating from Tayla Harris in Saturday’s first ALFW preliminary final at Princes Park. She looked an unstoppable warrior as she smashed through packs, inspiring a Carlton slaughter of the favoured Fremantle.

She slotted Carlton’s first goal with her trademark pin-point kicking technique but it was a pivotal moment in the second quarter that lifted her team and deflated the Dockers;

Leading up to the forward flank of the Carlton 50, Harris launched herself into a pack and took a huge contested mark over her opponent. As she lined up her set shot, her opponent then had to hobble past her to the interchange bench, head down, nursing a shoulder.

From that moment on, Fremantle didn’t stand a chance as the Blues piled on 9 goals for a final score line of 9.10.64 to Fremantle’s 4.4.28.

Was Harris’ fire fuelled by the online abuse she received from trolls earlier in the week or was she just that determined to win?

Either way, it was inspiring to watch and it was matched by a long list of impressive performances.

Blues young-gun, Madison Prespakis put on a best-on-ground worthy performance with 19 disposals, 1 goal, 3 marks and 6 tackles.

Former Australian Rugby 7s Olympic Gold Medallist, now Carlton Rookie - Chloe Dalton - booted 2 goals, including one monster from the centre-square.

Blues tall-timber, Alison Downie, was dominant in the ruck with 27 hitouts, providing silver service to a group of midfielders that showed exciting speed and exceptional skills with quick handballs through the middle of the ground.

Check out some incredible snaps from the game taken by Jack Banister:

Gabby O’Sullivan put up a fight on behalf of the Dockers, kicking two goals and the defensive pressure of Kiara Bowers and Hayley Miller was relentless, laying 6 tackles each.

For a play-by-play of the key moments in the match, head over to the Sporting Chance Mag twitter feed.

EDIT: After Adelaide thumped Geelong in the other Preliminary final on Sunday, Cartlon will now take on the dominant Crows in the AFLW Grand Final in Adelaide on Sunday (31 March) at 1pm.


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