ESSENDON 2.3 3.6 7.11 9.11 (65)
GEELONG 2.2 3.3 5.4 9.7 (61)
GOALS – Essendon: Parish 3, Townsend 3, Laverde, Fantasia, McKernan.
Geelong: Miers 3, Henry, Jenkins, Dangerfield, Atkins, Hawkins, Tuohy.
BEST – Essendon: McGrath, Zerk-Thatcher, Parish, Saad, Hurley. Geelong: Dangerfield, Steven, Tuohy, Stewart, Narkle, Miers.
UMPIRES – Ryan, Mollison, Harris, Foot.
VENUE – Central Reserve, Colac.
Two contrasting styles met on Monday with Essendon’s pace facing Geelong’s pressure in the final lead-up before round one, with the Bombers’ dominant third quarter allowing them to hang on to win the match by four points with the siren sounding just before Cats forward Brandan Parfitt flew for a mark inside 50.
After a dull first half that made Labour Day as fitting a description of the match as it was of the public holiday being enjoyed by the Colac locals, the Bombers’ 3D midfield – Devon Smith, Dylan Shiel and Darcy Parish – took over after the long break, with Parish kicking three goals in the third quarter to break the game open.