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Crows down Swans in titanic struggle

Getty

Getty

Adelaide livewire Eddie Betts slotted four goals as the Crows pipped Sydney by 10 points in a Saturday night AFL thriller.

Adelaide inflicted Sydney’s first loss of the season with a plucky 16.17 (113) to 15.13 (103) win at Adelaide Oval.

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The Crows trailed by three points midway through the last term but kicked three of the last four goals for a stirring win before 51,333 spectators.

Betts booted the sealer against a gallant Sydney some 33 minutes into the final term while fellow forward Tom Lynch slotted three majors.

Lynch kicked the goal that put the Crows in front in a tense finale while midfielders Rory Sloane (24 disposals), Scott Thompson (27 touches) and Matt Crouch (27 possessions) were prominent.

Recruit Paul Seedsman and rookie Mitch McGovern each kicked two goals in Adelaide’s third win from four starts this season.

Their feats helped overcome a Lance Franklin-inspired Sydney – the gun forward firing again with another four-goal haul – his fourth in a row.

Franklin was commanding while Dan Hannebery collected a game-high 38 disposals and young gun Isaac Heeney potted four goals in an eye-catching display.

And Swan Kurt Tippett had a successful outing against his former side with two goals, 13 disposals – all booed roundly – and 35 hitouts.

Adelaide, with Sloane prominent, skipped to a 17 point lead in the third term to delight their parochial home crowd.

The Swans then launched a gutsy comeback and, with Franklin and Tippett each potting two goals, stole a one-point lead at the last change.

But the Crows prevailed with five goals to three in a final quarter with Betts snaring their final two.

Elsewhere, the Western Bulldogs‘ defence has suffered another blow, losing young gun Jason Johannisen to a hamstring injury.

The setback soured a regulation 36-point AFL win for the Bulldogs on Saturday night over Carlton at Etihad Stadium.

It comes a week after they lost captain and defensive general Bob Murphy for the rest of the season with a knee injury that will need a reconstruction.

Johannisen snapped a goal from outside 50m nine minutes into the third term of the 13.7 (85) to 7.7 (49) win.

But he immediately clutched the top of the back of his right leg and was in distress as he limped from the field.

Johannisen has blazing speed and had been one of the Bulldogs’ best in their 3-1 start to the season.

Ruck-forward Tom Boyd also came off in the last term with a shoulder injury.

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