But the Lions grew in confidence through the back half of the second term, fighting their way back. Collingwood did not apply a hard tag to Lachie Neale, who was excellent in the first half but faded as the game wore on.
Brayden Sier has struggled to cement himself in the Magpies’ side, and even when he has played has not been known as a particularly flashy player. But he kicked a goal worthy of any highlight reel early in the game, snapping truly in heavy congestion from 45 metres out on a flank. The big-bodied midfielder duly celebrated with a “double cobra”. There were some cracking majors in the first half. After appearing ginger in the lead-up to the match, Neale sunk a long-range goal which belied his diminutive stature. Daicos applied a crunching tackle on Connor Ballenden to win a free kick before leaving the young Lion flat-footed as he sent through a bending beauty. And unsurprisingly Charlie Cameron got in on the act, leaving a stumbling Chris Mayne in his wake as he danced his way to perhaps the goal of the night during the Lions’ surge late in the second term.
The Pain of Mayne
It was a tough night for Mayne. Not only was he made to look silly by Cameron in the second term, he also got an accidental whack across the face from the Lions star during a third-quarter contest. The veteran Pie, in his first AFL game since returning from concussion, initially remained on the ground before heading to the bench to be checked out by the club’s medical staff. He was declared fit to proceed, leaving Beau McCreery, notionally playing his first game, needing to keep cooling his heels as Collingwood’s medical substitute. There were plenty of bruising moments on the night, including a strange one late in the second term in which Magpie Taylor Adams briefly looked worse for wear after an off-the-ball incident with Lincoln McCarthy, who appeared concerned for Adams’ wellbeing in the immediate aftermath.
Brisbane Rich, Lyons, Daniher, Zorko, McCluggage, Neale
Collingwood Grundy, Howe, Quaynor, Pendlebury, Roughead, Daicos
Daniel Rich (BL) 8
Brodie Grundy (Coll) 8
Jarryd Lyons (BL) 7
Jeremy Howe (Coll) 7
Joe Daniher (BL) 7