Richmond has defied the odds and a surging Brisbane to pull off a stunning AFLW upset by four points at Punt Road.
- The loss is the Lions’ first of the season
- The Tigers are in seventh placed on the ladder ahead of the completion of round five
- Courtney Wakefield kicked two goals for the Tigers
The Tigers held on grimly in the final quarter to topple the previously-unbeaten Lions 2.6 (18) to 1.8 (14) in front of an excited home crowd, with most of the fans on their way across Yarra Park for the AFL grand final later in the day.
It seemed Richmond had done enough when forward Courtney Wakefield booted her second goal against the strong breeze in the third quarter to grab the lead.
And the Tigers edged even further ahead with the wind behind them in the last term with behinds from Wakefield and Meagan Kiely.
But the Lions controlled the ball in the latter half of a frantic final term and had chances to snatch victory.
Lions forward Dakota Davidson marked strongly at the top of the goal square, but played on in a bid to snap the goal and Tiger Gabby Seymour threw herself across the boot to smother the ball.
The AFLW ladder leaders had another opportunity when Sophie Conway had a shot on the run, but this time it was Tiger defender Libby Graham who got the vital touch to save what would have been the match winner.
Richmond made the perfect start when Wakefield booted a goal from a free kick, a critical score against the wind in the opening quarter.
But the Lions quickly cancelled that early home advantage after Taylor Smith converted from a holding free kick at the other end. It seemed inconceivable that it would be the Lions’ only goal of the match.
The Lions were wasteful with first use of the strong southerly wind and the Tigers went to the quarter-time huddle content to be trailing by just three points.
Both defences were under extreme pressure with the wind in their faces. And it was Richmond’s turn to struggle to impact the scoreboard.
The Tigers went inside their attacking 50 12 times in the second quarter and managed to scrounge only three behinds to trail by one at the main break.
In the end, it came down to sheer guts and a touch of luck as players threw themselves into the contests with the ball deep in Brisbane’s forward line for the last seven minutes.