2009 AFL finals series

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The Australian Football League's 2009 finals series determined the top eight final positions of the 2009 AFL season over four weekends in September 2009, culminating with the 113th AFL/VFL Grand Final at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on 26 September 2009. Geelong won the AFL Premiership, for the second time in three years, following their twelve point win over St Kilda in the Grand Final.

The finals system[edit]

The system is a final eight system. This system is different from the McIntyre Final Eight System, which was previously used by the AFL, and is currently used by the National Rugby League.

The top four teams in the eight receive what is popularly known as the "double chance" when they play in week-one qualifying finals. This means that even if a top-four team loses in the first week, it still remains in the finals, playing a semi-final the next week against the winner of an elimination final. The bottom four of the eight play knock-out games, in that only the winners survive and move on to the next week. Home-state advantage goes to the team with the higher seed in the first two weeks, to the qualifying final winners in the third week. Games in Victoria are played at the MCG, regardless of the team's usual home ground.

In the second week, the winners of the qualifying finals receive a bye to the third week. The losers of the qualifying final plays the elimination finals winners in a semi-final. In the third week, the winners of the semi-finals from week two play the winners of the qualifying finals in the first week. The winners of those matches move on to the Grand Final at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Melbourne.[1]


While both The Saints and Geelong were undefeated until a round 14 match-up, and the Saints threat of an undefeated season only broken after 19 wins, both teams dropped matches late in the home-and-away season. Collingwood finished strongly, winning 12 of its last 14 matches[2]

Summary of results[edit]

  Qualifying / Elimination finals Semi-finals Preliminary finals Grand final
  QF1: Sep 6, MCG  
1  St Kilda 12.8 (80)  
4  Collingwood 7.10 (52)     SF1: Sep 12, MCG  
     Collingwood 12.11 (83)    
EF1: Sep 4, AAMI Stadium      Adelaide 11.12 (78)       PF1: Sep 18, MCG
5  Adelaide 26.10 (166)        St Kilda 9.6 (60)  
8  Essendon 10.10 (70)          W Bulldogs 7.11 (53)     GF: Sep 26, MCG
         St Kilda 9.14 (68)
  EF2: Sep 5, The Gabba       PF2: Sep 19, MCG      Geelong 12.8 (80)
6  Brisbane 16.15 (111)          Geelong 17.18 (120)  
7  Carlton 15.14 (104)     SF2: Sep 11, MCG        Collingwood 6.11 (47)  
     W Bulldogs 16.11 (107)    
QF2: Sep 5, MCG      Brisbane 8.8 (56)    
2  Geelong 14.12 (96)  
3  W Bulldogs 12.10 (82)  

Week one[edit]

First qualifying final (St Kilda v Collingwood)[edit]

First qualifying final
6 September, 2:40pm St Kilda def. Collingwood MCG (Crowd: 84,213)
1.2 (8)
6.4 (40)
9.7 (61)
12.8 (80)
2.4 (16)
4.6 (30)
6.8 (44)
7.10 (52)
Umpires: Brett Rosebury, Ray Chamberlain, Shane McInerney
Riewoldt 5, Koschitzke 2, McQualter 2, Goddard, Schneider, Milne Goals Rocca 2, Thomas 2, Anthony, Davis, Medhurst
Riewoldt, McQualter, Fisher, Hayes, Goddard, Montagna, Jones, Gram Best Cloke, Thomas, Shaw, Maxwell, O'Brien, Swan
Nil Injuries Scott Pendlebury (suspected broken leg), Anthony Rocca (ankle)
Nil Reports Nil

Collingwood started impressively in the first quarter with six scoring shots to three, to lead 2.4 (16) to 1.2 (8). St Kilda dominated the second quarter, scoring 5.2 to 2.2 to lead by 10 points at halftime. St Kilda kicked six goals to three in the second half to win by 28 points. Nick Riewoldt was the leading goal-kicker for St Kilda 5 goals. Anthony Rocca kicked two goals for Collingwood, but rolled an ankle with less than three minutes remaining. St Kilda progressed directly to the Preliminary Final, where it faces the Western Bulldogs in the First Preliminary Final. Collingwood progressed to the Semi-Final, where it faced Adelaide.

Second qualifying final (Geelong v Western Bulldogs)[edit]

Second qualifying final
5 September, 2:30pm Geelong def. Western Bulldogs MCG (Crowd: 74,007)
6.5 (41)
7.5 (47)
13.9 (87)
14.12 (96)
2.1 (13)
4.3 (27)
8.4 (52)
12.10 (82)
Umpires: Michael Vozzo, Simon Meredith, Hayden Kennedy
Bartel 3, Chapman 2, Mooney 2, Stokes 2, Enright, Ling, Mackie, Ottens, Taylor Goals Akermanis 3, Higgins 2, Johnson 2, Gilbee, Griffen, Hill, Hudson, Welsh
Scarlett, Enright, Milburn, Ablett, Bartel, Mackie Best Gilbee, Lake, Cross, Higgins, Boyd, Akermanis
Max Rooke (thigh) replaced in selected side by Simon Hogan Injuries Nil
Nil Reports Nil

Geelong dominated the first quarter and led by 28 points at quarter time. After quarter time the match was more even, and by three-quarter time, Geelong had extended its lead to only 35 points. The Bulldogs had a strong fight-back in the final quarter, but missed many shots on goal, finishing with 4.6 to 1.3 for the quarter. Geelong progressed to a Preliminary Final, which would be against Collingwood, and the Bulldogs progressed to a Semi-Final against Brisbane.

First elimination final (Adelaide v Essendon)[edit]

First elimination final
4 September, 7:45pm Adelaide def. Essendon AAMI Stadium (Crowd: 50,393)
4.3 (27)
12.4 (76)
18.9 (117)
26.10 (166)
3.3 (21)
5.7 (37)
8.8 (56)
10.10 (70)
Umpires: Stephen McBurney, Matt Stevic, Shaun Ryan
Porplyzia 5, Tippett 4, Knights 3, Burton 3, Dangerfield 2, Douglas 2, Vince, Edwards, Maric, Hentschel, Thompson, Mackay, Sellar Goals McPhee 4, Skipworth 2, Monfries, Quinn, Stanton, Lovett
Vince, McLeod, Doughty, Porplyzia, Tippett, Goodwin, Maric, Stevens Best McPhee, Welsh, Stanton, Lovett-Murray, Dyson
James Sellar (knock to head) Injuries Nil
Nil[3] Reports Lovett-Murray (rough conduct), McVeigh (striking)[3]

Essendon was playing in its first final since 2004. The first quarter was close, but Adelaide dominated the game from that point forward: eight goals to two in the second quarter, six goals to three in the third quarter, and eight goals to two in the final quarter. The final margin was 96 points. Adelaide progressed to a Semi Final against Collingwood; Essendon was eliminated.

Second elimination final (Brisbane v Carlton)[edit]

Second elimination final
5 September, 7:30pm Brisbane Lions def. Carlton The Gabba (Crowd: 32,702)
4.4 (28)
8.7 (55)
10.10 (70)
16.15 (111)
5.4 (34)
8.6 (54)
14.10 (94)
15.14 (104)
Umpires: Scott McLaren, Stuart Wenn, Scott Jeffery
Bradshaw 5, Brown 4, Johnstone 2, Sherman 2, Redden, Hooper, Rich Goals Fevola 3, Stevens 2, Cloke 2, Betts, Carrazzo, Garlett, Houlihan, Judd, Kreuzer, Murphy, Russell
Black, Bradshaw, Brown, Clark, Sherman, McGrath Best Judd, Fevola, Murphy, Kreuzer, Stevens, Carrazzo
Josh Drummond (quad), Joel Macdonald (TBA) Injuries Aaron Joseph (ankle)
Nil Reports Nil

Carlton was playing in its first final since 2001. After a close first half, Carlton opened a lead in the third quarter. After kicking the first goal of the final quarter, Carlton led by 30 points; but, Brisbane staged a strong comeback, kicking the last six goals of the game, to overrun Carlton and record a seven point win. Brisbane progressed to a Semi Final against the Bulldogs; Carlton was eliminated.

Week two[edit]

First semi-final (Collingwood v Adelaide)[edit]

First semi-final
12 September, 7:30pm Collingwood def. Adelaide MCG (Crowd: 62,184)
1.4 (10)
3.5 (23)
9.7 (61)
12.11 (83)
6.3 (39)
7.7 (49)
7.9 (51)
11.12 (78)
Umpires: Brett Rosebury, Ray Chamberlain, Shane McInerney
Johnson 2, Dick 2, Lockyer, O'Brien, Wellingham, Swan, Cloke, Macaffer, Brown, Anthony Goals Tippett 4, Dangerfield 2, Thompson 2, Hentschel, Knights, Burton
Maxwell, Sidebottom, Shaw, Swan, Lockyer, Johnson, Wellingham, Macaffer Best Vince, Goodwin, Johncock, Edwards, Shirley, Tippett, Porplyzia
Nil Injuries Knights (left hamstring)
Nil Reports Nil.

Collingwood made five changes (four because of injuries) to the team that lost to St Kilda. Adelaide dominated the first quarter, kicking six goals to one, and partway into the second quarter, Adelaide's lead reached 32 points. However, the game became more defensive, and Collingwood won the second quarter two goals to one. In the third quarter, Collingwood dominated, kicking six goals to none, to lead by ten points. In the final quarter, Adelaide kicked the first three goals, before Collingwood's Brent Macaffer scored a goal and tied the game early in time-on. In the end, Collingwood's Jack Anthony kicked the game-winning goal from a controversial free kick with only fifteen seconds remaining. Collingwood progressed to the Preliminary Final against Geelong.

Second semi-final (Western Bulldogs v Brisbane)[edit]

Second semi-final
11 September, 7:45pm Western Bulldogs def. Brisbane Lions MCG (Crowd: 47,030)
4.2 (26)
6.6 (42)
11.8 (74)
16.11 (107)
0.6 (6)
3.7 (25)
5.7 (37)
8.8 (56)
Umpires: Matt Stevic, Shaun Ryan, Simon Meredith
Hahn 4, Eagleton 3, Ward 2, Higgins 2, Cooney, Akermanis, Gilbee, Griffen, Minson Goals Brown 3, Bradshaw 3, McGrath, Redden
Boyd, Cooney, Eagleton, Cross, Hargrave, Giansiracusa, Akermanis Best Power, Brown, Merrett, Brennan, Clark, Hawksley
Ryan Griffen (corked calf) Injuries Nil
Nil Reports Nil

After building a seventeen-point lead in the first half, the Western Bulldogs scored five goals to two in the third quarter to set up an unbeatable lead. The Bulldogs eventually won by 51 points to progress to the Preliminary Final against St Kilda.

Week three[edit]

First preliminary final (St Kilda v Western Bulldogs)[edit]

First preliminary final
18 September, 7:40pm St Kilda def. Western Bulldogs MCG (Crowd: 78,245)
0.2 (2)
3.6 (24)
7.6 (48)
9.6 (60)
2.5 (17)
4.7 (31)
6.7 (43)
7.11 (53)
Umpires: Shane McInerney, Stephen McBurney, Ray Chamberlain
Riewoldt 4, Dal Santo, Fisher, Hayes, McQualter, Milne Goals Hahn 2, Johnson 2, Higgins, Giansiracusa, Picken
Riewoldt, Dal Santo, Hayes, Fisher, Jones, Goddard Best Griffen, Boyd, Johnson, Lake, Harbrow, Gilbee, Cooney
Nil Injuries Nil
Nil Reports Nil

This match was a low scoring, defensive struggle in cold, wet conditions. The Bulldogs kept St Kilda goalless in the first quarter, to lead by 15 points. Three goals to two in the second quarter saw St Kilda narrow the margin to seven points; then, with four goals to two in the third quarter, St Kilda took the lead by five points. The Bulldogs took back the lead with a goal early in the quarter, but with five scoring shots resulting in 1.4, did not build a lead; two late goals to St Kilda's captain Nick Riewoldt (who finished with four goals for the game) saw St Kilda regain and seal a seven point win. St Kilda progressed to the Grand Final for the first time since 1997.

Second preliminary final (Geelong v Collingwood)[edit]

Second preliminary final
19 September, 7:30pm Geelong def. Collingwood MCG (Crowd: 87,258)
3.6 (24)
7.7 (49)
11.13 (79)
17.18 (120)
2.2 (14)
5.8 (38)
6.9 (45)
6.11 (47)
Umpires: Shaun Ryan, Brett Rosebury, Scott McLaren
Chapman 5, Ablett 2, Byrnes 2, Hawkins 2, Varcoe 2, Corey, Johnson, Mooney, Ottens Goals Brown, Didak, Johnson, Lockyer, Macaffer, O'Brien
Ablett, Corey, Chapman, Ling, Scarlett, Bartel, Kelly, Varcoe Best O'Bree, Brown, Shaw, O'Brien
Nil Injuries Pendlebury (leg), replaced by Beams
Nil Reports Nil

For the second time in three years the Cats and Magpies would play off in the Preliminary Final. Collingwood started well, kicking 2.2 to nothing in the opening seven minutes; but Geelong then scored 3.6 to nothing for the rest of the quarter, and opened up a 24-point lead late in the second quarter. Two late goals to Collingwood narrowed the margin to 11 points at half time. Geelong then dominated the second half, kicking ten goals to one, ultimately winning by 73 points. Geelong progressed to its third consecutive grand final. Geelong would match that feat for the first time since 1951-1953 and the second time in the club's history.

Week four[edit]

Grand Final[edit]

Main article: 2009 AFL Grand Final
Grand Final
26 September, 2:30pm St Kilda def. by Geelong MCG (Crowd: 99,251)
3.2 (20)
7.7 (49)
9.11 (65)
9.14 (68)
3.0 (18)
7.1 (43)
9.4 (58)
12.8 (80)
Umpires: Stephen McBurney, Brett Rosebury, Shaun Ryan
Norm Smith Medal: Paul Chapman (Geelong)
Schneider 2, Goddard, Hayes, Dempster, Jones, Koschitzke, Riewoldt, Montagna Goals Chapman 3, Mooney 2, Hawkins 2, Rooke 2, Selwood, Byrnes, Ablett
Gram, Hayes, Ball, Jones, Montagna, Baker, Goddard Best Chapman, Rooke, Milburn, Taylor, Selwood, Ablett, Corey, Bartel, Ling, Scarlett
Goddard (broken nose/collarbone), Riewoldt (Torn adductor muscle) Injuries Paul Chapman (hamstring), Harry Taylor (broken hand)
Nil Reports Nil

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

External links[edit]