September 15, 2023

AFL finals 2023 LIVE updates: Demons, Blues clash in sudden-death blockbuster AFL semi-final


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Your view: Who wins, Dees or Blues?

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We’re off!

The first semi-final between Melbourne and Carlton is under way.

For one, a spot in the preliminary finals awaits, for the other, it’s season over.

Let’s do this. W


Not long to go as teams run out

The crowd is building at the MCG as we approach 15 minutes till first bounce.

Blues skipper Patrick Cripps has led his team out for the second time this finals series – and the slightest smile made its way through as he soaked in the moment.

At the other tunnel, Max Gawn led his Dees out and there was nothing but game faces down that end.


Why the Blues will wear black armbands

From Carlton:

Black arm bands – Don Nicholls

The players will tonight be wearing black armbands as a mark of respect to the late Don Nicholls, Carlton player No.701. Don, the older brother of club legend John Nicholls, was recruited from Maryborough and represented the Blues in 77 senior matches from 1956-’61. He was adjudged Carlton’s best first-year player in season 1956.


De Koning could spend more time forward

By Andrew Wu

At Carlton, Silvagni is not injured, but his lack of match fitness has counted against him. Ruckman Tom De Koning is expected to spend more time forward to support spearhead Charlie Curnow, who will again be the Blues’ main marking target with McKay unavailable. McKay, under concussion protocols, completed light running at training on Thursday.

Tom De Koning.Credit: AFL Photos

Silvagni would have played in the VFL this week if the Blues had a game, but the Blues decided he was not ready to play in a senior semi-final, and he was not among the 26 players who took part in Thursday’s “captain’s run” training session at Ikon Park.

The Blues fan favourite hurt his knee against West Coast in round 19, and again in his comeback game against Gold Coast in the VFL four weeks ago, raising doubts he’d be able to get through a game. He is fit, but not match-fit, having not featured in any internal match practice.

“He’s certainly available to play, I guess the question that we have to ask is if he’s ready,” Blues coach Michael Voss said. “He’s coming in without having played a game (in the VFL) first, so we’ll have to weigh that up as a match committee.”

Click here to read the story.


Players on the deck and warming up

Players are out on the deck and getting the muscles nice and warm for what’s expected to be a fiery clash tonight.

Charlie Curnow warming up for blockbuster semi-final clash.Credit: getty

Melbourne players warming up ahead of semi-final clash with Carlton.Credit: Getty


Three inclusions for Melbourne, but no Grundy

By Andrew Wu

Melbourne have left out Brodie Grundy for their semi-final showdown against Carlton, as both clubs adopt footy’s version of small ball to remedy their forward line deficiencies.

The Blues have recalled midfield bull Matthew Kennedy for his first senior game in two months and promoted Jesse Motlop to replace forward weapons Harry McKay and Jack Martin, but were not convinced of Jack Silvagni’s fitness for a cut-throat final.

Melbourne big man Brodie Grundy.Credit: AFL Photos

The Dees have dropped Michael Hibberd from their starting 22, days after he announced he would be retiring at season’s end, and picked defender Adam Tomlinson for his first final in the red and the blue amid three changes.

Click here to read the story.


Max Gawn’s draft interview: Video shows teen ruck with all his flaws

By Jake Niall

The interviewer had heard all about Max Gawn’s New Zealand family background, how he had stumbled into footy despite his rugby pedigree, and that while he often cracked jokes and was fun-loving, Max knew where the line lay and didn’t cross it.

The interviewer probed the laconic kid further. “Tough road, AFL football,” he said, adopting a school teacher tone.

“Yeah, it is,” Gawn concurred.

The inquisitor continued: “Plenty of people want to head down it, not many do.

“How can you head down it? What separates you from the rest of the pack?”

Click here to read the story.


Subs are in, no late changes

There are no late changes for tonight’s blockbuster semi-final.

Subs are:

Josh Schache for Melbourne Oliver Hollands for Carlton


Roos claim victory against Cats in AFLW

Over in the AFLW, North Melbourne have claimed a narrow win over a spirited Geelong side at GMHBA Stadium. It was a heated affair between the two top four sides.

The Roos were goalless at half-time, as all the momentum (and score) was with the Cats, who lead by 17-points.

But then it was four straight goals to zip for the Kangaroos in the second half, which handed them the four points to take back to Arden Street.

Final score, North Melbourne beat Geelong 4.7 (31) to 3.4 (22).

North Melbourne beat Geelong by a slim margin in round three.Credit: Getty


AFL retirees so far in 2023

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