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Swans thump reigning premiers at MCG

Logan McDonald of the Swans during the AFL Round 1 match between the Magpies and the Sydney Swans on Friday night.

Logan McDonald of the Swans during the AFL Round 1 match between the Magpies and the Sydney Swans on Friday night. Photo: AAP

In-demand Sydney forward Logan McDonald has kicked four goals in a convincing 33-point victory over Collingwood that leaves the AFL’s reigning premiers winless from two games in their flag defence.

McDonald took his chances in attack as the irrepressible Swans seized control during the second quarter and ran away with a 15.12 (102) to 10.9 (69) triumph in front of 78,933 fans at the MCG on Friday night.

Chad Warner starred in a Sydney engine room missing injured guns Callum Mills, Luke Parker and Taylor Adams, tallying 27 disposals, seven clearances and an equal career-best three goals.

Isaac Heeney was also influential in his midfield role with 29 touches, four clearances and two goals, while Errol Gulden (30 disposals) was busy and the Swans’ back-line stood up well on the rare occasions it was tested.

Ruckman Brodie Grundy split his ruck battle with Darcy Cameron and had the last laugh against another of his former clubs, having starred in the Swans’ opening-round win over Melbourne.

Key forward McDonald, who is out of contract at the end of the season, kicked two goals in each of the second and third terms before falling short of equalling his career-best tally when he missed a fifth shot in the final quarter.

Nick Daicos (37 disposals, seven clearances) and Scott Pendlebury (26, eight) found plenty of the ball in a losing battle for Collingwood, who were unable to give their forwards enough clean supply to kick a winning score.

Small forwards Jamie Elliott and Lachie Schultz (two each) were the only Magpies with multiple goals.

The result ended the Swans’ five-match losing streak at the home of football, which began with the 2022 grand final thrashing from Geelong.

Sydney had the run of play early but an efficient Collingwood attack kicked 3.1 from their first four forward forays to set up a narrow one-point quarter-time lead.

The Magpies were never going to be able to sustain that ratio and Sydney temporarily opened the floodgates with six consecutive goals before halftime.

Their speed and work rate through the midfield was devastating to that point but goals to Beau McCreery and Schultz just before the main break gave the Pies a lift.

Sydney put the result all but beyond doubt with 5.2 to 1.3 in the third term, pouncing on a series of Collingwood back half turnovers as the lead ballooned to 41 points by the final change.

The desperate Magpies threw returning defender Jeremy Howe forward in the final term in the hope of sparking a comeback, but the move was to no avail.

Collingwood face another stern test in six days’ time when they face St Kilda, while Sydney will be favourites to continue their winning start to the season against Essendon at the SCG.

–AAP

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