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5:41pm  Oct 19, 2017

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AFL 2017 Round 01 - Adelaide v GWS Giants

Troy Menzel celebrates kicking his first Crows goal

Adelaide has shown it is a force to be reckoned with this AFL season, conquering premiership favourites Greater Western Sydney by 56 points.

After a stumbling start, the Crows overran the Giants to win 22.15 (147) to 14.7 (91) in hot conditions at Adelaide Oval on Sunday afternoon.

Rory Laird was busy and creative for the home side with a career-best 40 disposals while Matt Crouch (29 disposals), Rory Atkins (three goals) and Charlie Cameron (23 disposals and two goals) contributed strongly.

Eddie Betts kicked four majors for the Crows while key forward Josh Jenkins booted three, including a long-range bomb after the half-time siren, in an important performance in the absence of captain Taylor Walker - a late withdrawal because of hamstring tightness.

GWS controlled the play early on, showing off its trademark running game as it moved the ball from defence to attack to lead at quarter-time.

Tom Scully (24 possessions and two goals) and Josh Kelly (27 disposals) ran hard for the Giants, while key forward Jeremy Cameron (four goals) made his mark on the scoreboard.

The hard-running Crows gained momentum and put the Giants to the sword in a game-breaking eight-goal third quarter in which they sliced through the GWS defence with relative ease.


Both teams looked to be blowing out the cobwebs early, making some untidy skill errors and poor decisions.

But this was contrasted with some slick play as both sides played on readily and regularly took on the corridor.

It was a rough day for GWS recruit Tendai Mzungu who appeared to strain a hamstring in the first quarter, playing no further part and leaving the visitors a man down.

A deliberate rushed behind decision paid against Daniel Talia drew jeers from the crowd after the Crows defender knocked the ball through under pressure, leading to a Giants goal.


WHAT'S NEW

Adelaide: Former Carlton forward Troy Menzel had a solid debut for the Crows, picking up 14 possessions and booting a goal. Against his old side, Curtly Hampton was quiet with just 11 touches and struggled to have an impact through the midfield. In his first game in 960 days, defender Andy Otten did a great job containing Giants big man Rory Lobb and had some crucial touches.

Greater Western Sydney: It was a tough day for the two newest faces at the Giants. Mature-aged recruit Tendai Mzungu left the ground with a hamstring injury in the second quarter and didn't return. Highly-rated youngster Tim Taranto, the No.2 overall pick in last year's draft, kicked the ball straight to Eddie Betts with one of his first touches and finished with 13 possessions.

MEDICAL ROOM

Adelaide: Forward Mitch McGovern picked up a knock to his ankle and will be assessed during the week. Captain Taylor Walker was a late scratching with a hamstring injury, but should return next week.

Greater Western Sydney: The Giants will be without Tendai Mzungu for next week and possibly longer depending on the extent of a hamstring injury. Key forward Jonathon Patton has a hip injury and will be monitored during the week, but Dylan Shiel and Jeremy Cameron should be available after minor knocks. 

NEXT UP
The Crows aim to build on their winning momentum when they take on Hawthorn at the MCG on Saturday afternoon. Meanwhile, the Giants are back at home when they host Gold Coast at Metricon Stadium on Saturday at 4.35pm. 



ADELAIDE
                               2.3   7.9   15.14   22.15 (147)
GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY  4.5   6.7   11.7     14.7 (91)

GOALS
Adelaide: Betts 4, Atkins 3, Jenkins 3, McGovern 2, Cameron 2, Douglas 2, Knight 2, Mackay, Menzel, Smith, Milera
GWS: Cameron 4, Smith 3, Scully 2, Greene, Lobb, Kennedy, Johnson, Patton 

BEST 
Adelaide: Laird, Cameron, Atkins, Douglas, Milera, Betts
GWS: Kelly, Shiel, Williams, Cameron 

INJURIES 
Adelaide: Walker (hamstring) replaced in the selected side by Knight, McGovern (ankle)
GWS: Mzungu (hamstring) left the ground in the second quarter. 

Reports: Nil

Umpires: Fisher, Stephens, Jeffery

Official crowd: 43,993 at the Adelaide Oval