Nathan Buckley promises change after upset defeat to Giants


Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley has acknowledged change is needed after the Magpies lost to an undermanned Giants to drop off the pace after four rounds with just one win to their name.

They will head to Perth to face a rebounding West Coast at Optus Stadium down on form and without midfielder Taylor Adams, who suffered a medial collateral ligament (MCL) injury in the loss to the Giants.

Nathan Buckley. Credit:Getty Images

“You can’t be one and three and sit on your hands,” Buckley said. 

“We think we have picked the best side to get results and we haven’t so we have to look at changes, whether that is the way we play, whether we strip things back, the way we prepare or personnel.”

Collingwood made just one change after their one point loss to the Brisbane Lions including veteran Levi Greenwood for Tyler Brown and have stuck with underperforming players for the first month of the season.

Buckley said the team was still doing some things well and the win over Carlton and one point loss to Brisbane in the previous two rounds indicated they had rebounded from a lacklustre opening round, but the loss to the Giants showed there was an urgent need to improve.

“We’re not in a hole. We need to address this right now and turn it around,” Buckley said.

“After tonight there is enough evidence there that we need to change something up.”

Buckley pointed out that winning contests in the forwardline remained an issue and was an area that needed addressing, with the Magpies only scoring above 72 points in one match this season when they kicked 106 points to defeat Carlton in round two.

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Dolphins defeat Bullants under lights


VFL

THE Frankston Dolphins scored a come-from-behind win in their first game under lights at home.

The match was the first played under the new lights at Skybus Stadium. The Dolphins played host to the Northern Bullants on Thursday night.

Despite being down by two points at three-quarter-time, the Dolphins were able to claw their way back to secure a gritty 13 point win.

The Northern Bullants are recovering from a rocky period in their history. Carlton Football Club ended its affiliation with the side in 2020, which looked like it could be a death blow for the 139-year-old club. The Bullants were not set to be part of the eventually cancelled 2020 VFL season, but are back on board for 2021.

The Dolphins defeated the Bullants 11.4 (70) to 8.9 (57).

First published in the Frankston Times – 30 March 2021

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Western Bulldogs defeat Richmond by 13 points to end 2021 AFLW campaign


The Western Bulldogs have finished their 2021 AFLW campaign on a positive note with a 13-point victory over Richmond in their final-round clash at Whitten Oval.

After opening up a three-goal lead at half-time, the Bulldogs were tormented by their former captain Katie Brennan, who kicked two of her three goals for the Tigers in the third quarter to trim the deficit to just four points.

But despite being held goalless in the third term, the Bulldogs reasserted themselves in the final stanza, booting two of the last three goals to seal the deal.

Making the 7.3 (45) to 5.2 (32) result even sweeter for the hosts was that it came against Brennan and star midfielder Monique Conti who were both playing their old side for the first time.

Kirsty Lamb was the Bulldogs’ best player with 23 disposals, seven tackles, four clearances and a goal, while Elisabeth Georgostathis (10 touches) did a magnificent tagging job on the usually prolific Conti (12).

Brooke Lochland (23 and a goal) and Ellie Blackburn (20) were also instrumental to the victory.

Brennan (14 disposals) stood out for the Tigers, and she was well supported by Harriet Cordner, who who shut down star Bulldogs forward Izzy Huntington.

The Bulldogs, who were out of finals contention heading into the match, made the most of the strong breeze in the first quarter, doubling the Tigers for inside 50s (10-5) and tripling them for marks inside 50 (6-2), to kick four of the first five goals.

Two of those were booted by Kirsten McLeod, one of them a magnificent running effort from 52 metres out after taking the intercept mark on the wing and taking two bounces.

Kicking into the wind in the second term, the Bulldogs set up cleverly defensively, making it hard for Richmond to get it out of its backline, and not even a mark-of-the-year contender from Ellie McKenzie over Lochland could inspire the Tigers to cut the three-goal deficit by half-time.

The Tigers dominated the third period but despite Brennan’s best efforts in the second half, she was not able to drag her side over the line as the Bulldogs held firm.

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Six Nations 2021: Ireland coach Andy Farrell vindicated, England coach Eddie Jones feeling heat after defeat


Andy Farrell basked in the most impressive victory since he took over as Ireland head coach saying the 32-18 Six Nations win over England proved they were on the right track.

Farrell’s side out-thought and out-fought an England side captained by his son Owen to end in emphatic fashion a run of four straight defeats to the same opponents.

Farrell was in overall charge for the last two in 2020, but he said he had not been put off course by those losses in where he wanted to take the Irish.

Ireland finished this Six Nations with three successive wins having lost their opening two narrowly, to Wales and France.

“To get that result against a very good side like England reiterates we are on the right track,” he said.



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Gold Coast Titans beat Brisbane Broncos 28-16, Newcastle Knights defeat Warriors


A double to big-money recruit David Fifita has lifted Gold Coast to a 28-16 win over his former club Brisbane in Robina.

Broncos playmaker Anthony Milford was nothing more than a speed bump in defence for his ex-teammate, as Fifita scored in either half to secure the Titans their first win of the 2021 campaign.

Defeat to their Queensland rivals gave the Broncos a 13th straight loss, an unwanted record stretching all the way back to round nine last year.

Earlier on Friday evening, Newcastle made sure it maintained its unbeaten start to the season with a 20-16 win over the Warriors in Gosford.

Fifita opened his Titans account late in the first half when he shrugged off Milford and Tesi Niu on his way to the tryline.

That four-pointer sparked a three-try barrage inside seven minutes for the home team to break open the game with Erin Clark and Jaimin Jolliffe both scoring to send the Titans into half-time with a healthy 22-6 lead.

It was Fifita who extended the lead in the second half, crashing past Milford again before dragging Jamayne Isaako over the line.

Earlier, it was another ex-Bronco who opened the scoring with Jarrod Wallace charging over from short range in the 20th minute after Brisbane had repelled plenty of early Titans pressure.

The Broncos made the most of a missed knock-on moments later when Brodie Croft’s kick was claimed by a flying Xavier Coates, who fed Tesi Niu for an instant reply.

When Fifita restored Gold Coast’s six-point lead in the 33rd minute the game suddenly disappeared from Brisbane’s grasp.

The 21-year-old left the field in the 63rd minute for a head-injury assessment after Coates had got a try back for Brisbane but returned in the final few minutes to celebrate with his new teammates.

Fifita ended the game with 104 running metres from 12 carries, one of four Titans forwards to record over 100 metres.

There was also a big game in his 100th appearance for the Titans from five-eighth Ash Taylor, who forced three errors with strong defence.

Young backrower Jordan Riki was the standout for the Broncos, recording 177 running metres with four tackle busts and a linebreak.

Warriors coach Nathan Brown was handed another bitter pill by Newcastle on Friday night, as the NRL team he helped build stole a four-point victory.

More than a year since Brown was shown the door and replaced by Adam O’Brien, the former Knights coach watched on as players he helped develop ran home late over his new gritty side.

Teenage centre Bradman Best was handed his NRL debut by Brown at the end of 2019 and this evening showed why he is one of the brightest young talents in the NRL.

The 19-year-old was under an injury cloud with an ankle sprain coming into the match but showed the depth of his skill with two stunning try-assists for Hymel Hunt’s double.

His first was a slick flick pass to Hunt on the left edge to put the Knights in front by eight early in the second half, but the best of the two came to seal the victory with four minutes left on the clock.

The Knights were down by two after conceding a try to Ken Maumalo at the opposite end when he came up with a line-break and offload to Hunt in support who scored under the posts.

Ironically, Jayden Brailey scored his first try for the Knights 18 minutes in when he darted from dummy half to score.

In 2019, Brown did all the work to lure Brailey to the Knights from Cronulla, where he was fast-emerging as one of the game’s top young hookers.

Brailey joined on the understanding he would be playing for Brown in 2020, only for the coach to be sacked by the club less than a month after he signed.

Brailey’s craftiness and speed around the ruck are what made Brown pursue him for the Knights’ pack, but that same skill came back to bite him.

But it did not take long for the Warriors to hit back, even after Wade Egan was denied by the Bunker half an hour into the match.

The Warriors were set-up for the conversion when the video referee ruled the hooker had dropped the ball over the line, but Knights half Phoenix Crossland was not square at marker.

Barnstorming forward Ben Murdoch-Masila crashed through lapse defence off the ensuing penalty to level the scores at 6-6.

The Tonga international was a handful in his second match back for the Warriors, finishing with three tackle breaks and a line break for the night.

Back-to-back tries to Adam Pompey and Maumalo put the Warriors in the lead late before the Knights came steaming home for their second straight win.

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Western Bulldogs defeat Collingwood Magpies, score, result, report, stats, video, reaction, latest news


Adam Treloar 1, Collingwood 0.

The Western Bulldogs gave their boom recruit a fitting welcome to the club, with his midfield powering past Collingwood to the tune of 16 points at the MCG.

While Treloar was solid, fellow recruit Stefan Martin who was even better, dominating ruck opponent Brodie Grundy – in a match-up where Grundy has been best-on-ground three straight times.

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“I’m just glad it’s over,” Treloar said post-match after all of the furore around the meeting with his old side.

The Bulldogs’ Bailey Smith won the Bob Rose-Charlie Sutton Medal as best on ground.

FEATURE: The Pies told recruits their trade plan. It was a debacle, and now we see if the wounds have healed

MATCH REPORT

Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge surprisingly left Norm Smith medallist Jason Johannisen out of his selected 22, handing debuts to Anthony Scott (in Johannisen’s half-back position) and Lachlan McNeil.

Collingwood named top 2020 draft pick Ollie Henry, the brother of Geelong’s Jack, as their sole debutant.

The medical substitutes were Callum Brown (Magpies) and Rhylee West (Bulldogs), leaving Johannisen snubbed again.

Laitham Vandermeer kicked the opening goal of the match for the Dogs.

Treloar’s much-anticipated first touch came in open space on the wing, and he was loudly booed by Magpies fans – bizarrely, given he was forced out of the club and said just this week how much he still loves Collingwood – before some cheers. More importantly, the touch set up one of three quick Bulldogs goals to begin the match.

The Magpies finally got on the board not long after through Mason Cox, but after a fast start, the game became a stalemate though the Dogs were still dominating territory. They led 3.2 (20) to 1.2 (8) at quarter-time.

Scott Pendlebury was caught holding the ball 30 metres out from the Bulldogs goal in the opening minutes of the second term, allowing Bailey Smith to extend their lead.

A brilliant pair of kicks from Will Hoskin-Elliott and Jamie Elliott gave the Magpies a much-needed response, but then Josh Thomas followed a Bulldog through the infringement zone as Lachie McNeil lined up for a set shot. The ensuing 50-metre penalty made McNeil’s first career goal an easy one.

Alex Keath was caught by the stand rule late in the term, failing to follow the umpire’s instructions and handing Hoskin-Elliott a makeable set shot which he converted for the Pies’ third goal of the night.

At this stage the Bulldogs had recorded 31 inside 50s to the Magpies’ 13, yet only led by two goals, showing their trademark inefficiency. Jack Crisp in the final seconds trimmed the deficit, putting his Pies down 4.6 (30) to 6.5 (41).

After a number of poor entries to start the third term, Aaron Naughton marked a ball that barely went 10 metres (never mind 15), but demolished the kick for the quarter’s first goal.

“They’re just being too cute when they go forward,” Wayne Carey said of the Bulldogs on commentary.

In contrast an incredible piece of transition play, started by Darcy Moore’s beautiful run-and-carry out of defence, gave the Magpies an easy end-to-end goal.

A few touchy calls – including what looked like a Magpies mark but wasn’t called, with the ball going down the other way and leading to a Tim English major – saw the Dogs ahead 9.7 (61) to 5.7 (37) at three-quarter-time.

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A stellar Marcus Bontempelli mark 15 metres out looked set to extend the Bulldogs’ lead to five goals but he sprayed the set shot terribly, “leaving the door open for the Magpies” per James Brayshaw.

They cut the margin to three goals with 13:43 left through Jamie Elliott, but a Stefan Martin crumb put the lead back out to 23 points a few minutes later.

The Dogs then successfully took the heat out of the game. Mason Cox got the margin back to 16 points with 2:44 left but it was too little, too late.

THE 3-2-1 – WHAT WE LEARNED, by David Zita

3. GRUNDY IS STILL IN AN ALMIGHTY SLUMP

Take a glance at the raw hitout tally and you could be forgiven for thinking Brodie Grundy had a serviceable outing against the Western Bulldogs.

Watch the match unfold, however, and it‘s a completely different story – Grundy actually received bronx cheers from his own supporters as the night unfolded and Stefan Martin took clear control of the contest.

In all of his previous three outings against the Western Bulldogs, Grundy polled three Brownlow votes as he feasted on a developing Tim English.

Martin’s arrival was seemingly tailor-made to combat Grundy and one game in the move has already, as Luke Hodge said on Channel 7, “paid for itself”.

English up forward booted a goal and had a chance at another, while Martin racked up 15 touches, booted a goal and had five score involvements.

Grundy finished with 11 touches, the majority of which came in defence, with his influence on the match negligible by comparison.

The 26-year-old, entering the second year of his mega seven-year, $7 million deal, had a down season in 2020 but like several players the blame was put on the rigours of hub life.

One game into the 2021 season, however, and there could be alarming signs for Nathan Buckley concerning the once dominant ruckman.

2. DID THE PIES MISS A TRICK WITH TRELOAR TREATMENT?

With the buildup to Adam Treloar’s match against Collingwood reaching fever pitch, much talk centred around how his old teammates would treat him ahead of the opening bounce.

It seemed at the outset that there was no bad blood between Treloar and his former teammates, with he and Tyler Brown sharing a warm embrace on the wing before the first quarter began.

While his first touch drew boos from some sections of the Collingwood crowd, the pre-match demeanour towards Treloar was something you‘d likely not see in a bygone era.

During Fox Footy’s half-time show, Brisbane Lions great Jonathan Brown was asked if he would’ve wanted his teammates to make Treloar feel uncomfortable leading into the opening bounce.

“I probably would’ve. I certainly wouldn’t be hugging him before the game,” he said.

“But that’s the thing, going into the game, the players didn’t have the angst against Treloar. It was more the off-field people and especially Nathan Buckley who he’s lost that relationship with for the time being.

“It was a non-event, they let him go, but I wouldn’t mind just a few more Collingwood boys walking past and just giving him a little nudge here and there. Call me old school.”

1. DOGS FORCE MAGPIES INTO GAME PLAN CHANGE

The first six minutes of Friday night‘s match would’ve left Nathan Buckley with his head in his hands, as the high octane possession footy the Dogs have made their own looked set to blow the Pies out of the water.

From that point on, however, Collingwood players sensed the match getting away from them (perhaps with some advice from the runner as well) and moved to lock the game down and create a scrappy contest they could thrive in.

It was a 180 degree turn that proved itself on the stats sheet at half time, as Garry Lyon explained.

“Six minute mark onwards the mark play on percentage is 19 per cent for Collingwood. The Dogs (37 per cent) still want to go, go, go, the Pies said no, lets take some heat out of this,” he said.

Another change from the opening six minutes of the game centred around the Pies‘ pressure game, which soared.

“What happens then is it‘s a more congested game and the pressure comes into the game. That was a low pressure opening six minutes, after that, this is what the Pies like (pressure rating of 199 from the six minute mark onwards to the Dogs’ 203), they want to get some heat on this beautiful ball moving Western Bulldogs team,” Lyon said.

“They closed it down, we‘re four goals to six, that’s much better than the 11 goals to three it was looking up to the six minute mark of the first quarter.”

Nick Riewoldt agreed, adding: “Collingwood look much more likely, winners almost, when they got the game in the trenches, in tight, high pressure.”

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Merkel's party slumps to defeat in regional polls



The Christian Democrats got a quarter of the vote in Baden-Württemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate.

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England fume about controversial decisions in defeat to Wales


A furious Farrell remonstrated with the referee but was brushed aside.

Soon afterwards Wales winger Louis Rees-Zammit dropped the ball in flight, throwing his head back in dismay, and though Williams collected it to score, everyone on the pitch appeared to assume play would be called back for a knock-on.

However, the TMO ruled that Rees-Zammit had dropped it on to his leg and so, even though it travelled forwards, it did not count as a knock on.

Farrell held his tongue in a tetchy post-match interview with the BBC.

As Referee, Pascal Gauzere gestures towards his hand, an on looking Dan Biggar of Wales kicks into the corner to set up Josh Adams of Wales who claims the high ball and goes over to score their side’s first try during the Guinness Six Nations match between Wales and England at Principality Stadium on February 27, 2021 in Cardiff, Wales.

As Referee, Pascal Gauzere gestures towards his hand, an on looking Dan Biggar of Wales kicks into the corner to set up Josh Adams of Wales who claims the high ball and goes over to score their side’s first try during the Guinness Six Nations match between Wales and England at Principality Stadium on February 27, 2021 in Cardiff, Wales. Credit:Getty Images

“There is no point in talking about it now,” he said. “That is for everyone else to talk about. Maybe there were tough calls but we’ve got to be good enough to overcome that.”

Coach Eddie Jones took a similar approach.

“They’re huge decisions, we can’t debate it – we are not allowed to debate it. All I will end up with is a fine and that won’t help anyone,” he said.

Former England captain and coach Martin Johnson had a different view.

“I’m speechless, that is appalling refereeing,” he said of the first try in his role as a TV analyst.

There was further support for England from a prominent Welshman, former international referee Nigel Owens.

“It was 100% a knock-on,” he said. “Rees-Zammit definitely touches the ball and it travels forward on to his calf, then goes backwards and then comes off an England player. It’s irrelevant that it’s gone backwards off his calf. The fact is it’s gone forward first before that.”

Former England prop David Flatman, also working as a pundit, stirred the pot.

The Wales team celebrate after defeating England and winning the Triple Crown following the Six Nations rugby union match between Wales and England at the Millennium stadium in Cardiff, Wales, Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. Wales win the triple crown for defeating Ireland, Scotland and England. Wales defeated England 40-24.

The Wales team celebrate after defeating England and winning the Triple Crown following the Six Nations rugby union match between Wales and England at the Millennium stadium in Cardiff, Wales, Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. Wales win the triple crown for defeating Ireland, Scotland and England. Wales defeated England 40-24. Credit:PA

“The first half was an oval-shaped omnishambles,” he said.

“If Louis Rees-Zammit didn’t knock that on, then the game I’ve been watching for 40 years isn’t rugby.”

The final comment was a reference to the 14 penalties England conceded, three of which were turned into nine points in the final 15 minutes by replacement flyhalf Callum Sheedy to take the game out of the visitors’ reach after they had battled back to 24-all.

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“There were times we gave away penalties we shouldn’t have, it was just from the effort and sometimes you get in situations where emotionally you struggle because of the circumstances and you try too hard,” Jones said.

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Hawthorn Hawks defeat Western Bulldogs in practice match No.1 draft pick Jamarra Ugle-Hagan was overlooked for


No.1 draft pick Jamarra Ugle-Hagan pictured in action on Wednesday. Credit:Getty Images

Ugle-Hagan – like all Victorian draftees – was unable to play much football last year because of the coronavirus crisis. Bulldogs great and assistant coach Rohan Smith said the club would not be putting pressure on him to be in the team early in 2021.

“He’s a kid. He didn’t play at all last year. There is a little bit of hype but we just want to see him compete and have a bit of fun,” Smith said.

“During training he’s been really good. He’s shown patches when he can hold a really good mark and hold some really good defensive patterns as well in his game. He’s just got to find that consistency and we’ll certainly see that over the next few weeks.”

Ugle-Hagan will be trying to find a spot up forward, where he will be competing with the likes of Naughton and Josh Bruce. Bruce was relatively quiet in the loss to Hawthorn. It was resting ruckman Tim English who looked the most dangerous up forward, with recruit Stefan Martin doing the majority of the ruckwork in impressive fashion.

Plenty of positives for young Hawks

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In a fairly new-look forward line that started with Jacob Koschitzke, it was nippy small forward Ollie Hanrahan who caused the Dogs the most trouble. Hanrahan kicked three goals to half-time and the rookie selection will be looking to build on his 16 senior games in 2021.

New draftee Connor Downie was impressive on the wing for Hawthorn and will provide coach Alastair Clarkson with some much-needed outside run, particularly with Isaac Smith and Tom Scully recently leaving the club.

Changkuoth Jiath – or CJ, as he’s called by his teammates – also impressed across half-back. Jiath is very athletic and has a few tricks in his bag. Expect to see a lot of him at senior level this year after only seven career games to date.

Value recruit

Forget about Adam Treloar and Ugle-Hagan, what about Stef Martin? The former Demon and Lion may prove an invaluable pick-up for the Dogs, given that it allows English to spend more time developing his forward craft.

Martin turns 35 at the end of the year but has been particularly durable during the later stages of his career, barely missing a game since 2015.

He proved a handful for Jonathon Ceglar and Ben McEvoy.

The Dogs are hopeful Treloar, who has had calf tightness, will be back for round one.

New rule had no impact

While there has already been murmuring of discontent across clubs for the new man-on-the-mark rule, it was hardly noticed at Whitten Oval.

There was one 50-metre paid in the last quarter, but that may have even been paid last year.

League football operations boss Steve Hocking would have been pleased with what he saw as he watched from the stands. The rule caused little confusion and both teams had 22 scoring shots. But then again, it was little more than match simulation.

Former Richmond captain and Hawks assistant Chris Newman said it promoted faster ball movement, but will it ultimately improve the game?

“I don’t know yet, that’s the honest answer, ” Newman said. “You can only gauge so much from training. I think we need to have a look at a few more games consistently.”

McEvoy back to the future

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New Hawthorn skipper McEvoy played the match in the ruck, interchanging with Ceglar.

The Hawks say he’s likely to play there for the majority of the season and not in his previous role as centre half-back.

“There may be stages where we need him to go back, but at this stage he’ll be predominantly in that ruck role,” Newman said after the match.

Newman said the recruitment of Kyle Hartigan had allowed McEvoy to move back into the ruck without leaving too big a void in defence.

“We feel like he’s got a real opportunity, as captain too, to be able to go in and play with Cegs and provide a strong contest for us on the ground,” he said.

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NBL21: Adelaide 36ers defeat South East Melbourne Phoenix


It was the tale of the NBL’s two Jekyll and Hyde teams.

You never know what you’re going to get from the South East Melbourne Phoenix or the Adelaide 36ers when they step on the court.

Both sides have produced, at times, basketball that would put them among the best teams in the NBL.

But, too, often, each has looked more cellar-dweller than NBL champion.

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This game was no exception as the Phoenix allowed the Sixers to get out to a 17-point lead with nine minutes to go in the game, then whittled it down to 1 with 59 seconds left, before falling to a 99-94 defeat.

Phoenix coach Simon Mitchell felt the up and down label was a little overblown, but put the inconsistency of performance down to a condensed season that made preparation for games challenging.

“We virtually had no preparation for this game,” Mitchell said.

“That’s going to lend itself to a little bit of inconsistency and I thought we saw that in our on-ball defence tonight.

“I think as a coaching staff we may need to do a little bit better job of keeping it simpler.”

The ebbs and flows of the fourth quarter redeemed what had been a dour affair.

This was a game, on paper, the Phoenix would have pencilled in. The highest scoring team at better than 91 a game pushed title-favourite Melbourne United to the brink, knocked off the previously undefeated Hawks, avenged a horror 31-point loss to the Perth Wildcats and then demolished the Brisbane Bullets.

Adelaide had dropped three of its last four games by 15-plus and looked dead in the water.

But, on this night, the Sixers came out as Dr Jekyll and the Phoenix Mr Hyde.

Coach Conner Henry might have just saved the side.

Powered by a Mitch Creek (23 points, 12 rebounds, 8 assists) three-point barrage, they went on a ridiculous three-minute 16-2 run that cut the margin to just three.

After Creek sent a trio of three-point bombs through the net, Isaac Humphries (24pts, 11rebs) hammered home a power jam — over the Phoenix superstar — that had him roaring ferociously as the Sixers tried to stop the rot.

Henry then used the new NBL Cup novelty to challenge a foul charged to import Tony Crocker (12 points) as he closed out on Phoenix sharpshooter Cam Gliddon (18 points).

Had the foul stood, Gliddon would have walked to the line for three shots — down 5 — and Crocker would have been out of the game.

But the referees threw the call out on review and the Sixers went the other way, Crocker ironically fouled and sunk both freebies — after an unsuccessful challenge from Simon Mitchell.

The Sixers got it back out to seven, before the Phoenix came again, trimming the margin to one, but Adelaide was good enough to hold on.

“We really needed a team win tonight,” Sixers star Isaac Humphries said on the ESPN broadcast after the game.

“That’s what we talked about all week, we needed a hard fought out win as a team to get our momentum going again and I think we did that.

“We played really well together, executed exactly what we needed to.

“I’m so proud of the boys.”

Coming off a triple double, Keifer Sykes had just five points in seven first-half minutes as Adelaide keyed in on the Phoenix gamebreaker, Sunday Dech, Crocker and a host of help defenders giving the American star hell. Young gun Josh Giddey flirted with a triple-double with 15pts, 9asts and 7rebs.

DJ FINALLY SPINS DECKS ON JOHN CAIN

Whether it’s called Melbourne Arena or John Cain Arena, this court has been kryptonite for Adelaide star Daniel Johnson.

In his last three games on this floor, he has scored just 7, 4 and 6 points on a purid 5-24 shooting (21 per cent).

But the Sixers went to him early and often in a bid to get him into the game and the big fella obliged with a breakthrough 27pts and 10rebs.

The Phoenix might have been his remedy, though — he loves playing them, having dropped 52 points in his two previous clashes on 62 per cent shooting.

ROWDY HAS LANDED

The Phoenix turned heads when they landed the signature of ex-NBAer and Mayor of Frankston Ryan Broekhoff.

The sharpshooter has landed in Sydney and begun his mandatory 14-day quarantine stint.

He gets out of quarantine on March 7 and will join the team ahead of their triple-header in the last round of the NBL Cup.

Thank you for dropping by My Local Pages and seeing this post regarding sport titled “NBL21: Adelaide 36ers defeat South East Melbourne Phoenix”. This news update was shared by MyLocalPages as part of our local news services.

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