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Punt Road to Glory: Round 14

Punt Road to glory: R14 Watch the highlights from the Round 14 win over Carlton.
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 25:  Brandon Ellis of the Tigers is congratulated by team mates after kicking a goal during the round 14 AFL match between the Richmond Tigers and the Carlton Blues at Melbourne Cricket Ground on June 25, 2017 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images/AFL Media)
Brandon Ellis celebrates a goal in the opening term of Sunday's win

Richmond’s road to premiership glory in 2017 will be re-lived at through our match reports and video highlights of each Tigers win during the season.

In a special off-season series until Wednesday, November 22, you can again savour the sweet taste of Tiger success, culminating in the sweetest of them all – the Grand Final victory over Adelaide. Today we look back to our first win after the bye over Carlton...

THEY can't all be classics. In a round with many twists, turns and surprises, there was bound to be a couple of games that ran to a more conventional, as-you'd-expect script.

That was the case at the MCG on Sunday, when Richmond beat Carlton by 26 points to record their eighth win of the season and remain entrenched in the hunt for a top-four spot.

The Tigers trailed at the first change but then controlled the next three terms to run out 11.18 (84) to 8.10 (58) victors, ending the Blues' recent form patch. It was the type of mature response Richmond would have expected following last week's tight loss to Sydney.

It was also the type of win not hung on some starring big names. Brownlow Medal fancy Dustin Martin warmed into things, and finished with 30 disposals in a good game, but it won't make his brilliant highlights reel, while Trent Cotchin was neat and tidy with his touches but relatively quiet. Jack Riewoldt kicked three majors.

It was the next tier's efforts that should please the Punt Road faithful. Kane Lambert was consistent with 26 disposals, six tackles and a goal, while Shaun Grigg (26 touches, 12 marks), Brandon Ellis (23, one goal) and Bachar Houli (28) were busy.

Patrick Cripps was Carlton's leading midfielder, showing smarts and strength in the middle with 27 disposals and eight tackles, while ruckman Matthew Kreuzer continued his strong form with 14 disposals and a dominant 37 hit-outs and two goals. Sam Docherty (28 disposals), Bryce Gibbs (30) and Marc Murphy (26) were also solid.

Carlton entered the game with plenty of confidence on the back of two strong wins. Kreuzer was working over Tigers ruckman Toby Nankervis to push forward and make himself a target, while Levi Casboult was also dangerous in the air, his clean hands making him a constant and imposing threat in the first quarter.

With Riewoldt the Tigers' sole tall option near goal, they had to be precise pushing forward but their kicking inside-50 was poor, resulting in some messed up chances. But Jason Castagna continued his exciting season with two goals in the opening quarter, and by the first change the Blues led by just four points, an advantage that about summed up the arm wrestle that was unfolding.

But Carlton couldn't add to its goal tally in the second term as Richmond flexed its muscle to head into the second half with a 14-point lead. It should have been more – the Tigers had more than doubled the Blues for inside-50s (33 entries to 16).

For Carlton to turn things around, a change in channel was required. For Richmond, if it could resume regular programming after half time its second win of the season over the Blues loomed.

A goal to Kreuzer early in the third term gave hope for the Blues to get more reward for their effort, but it took another 26 minutes of game time before Carlton scored its next goal. In between, Richmond kicked two and had gotten out to a 19-point advantage.

Richmond looked steady going into the final term with a 13-point lead. And with four of the first five goals to start the final term, they had it sealed.

It wasn't all good news for the Tigers with defender Bachar Houli reported in the first quarter after making contact with Jed Lamb in an off-the-ball incident. Lamb left the field concussed and took no further part in the match.

It's a big game next Saturday night for the Tigers, who head to Adelaide Oval and face Port Adelaide. Carlton will host Adelaide that afternoon at the MCG.

RICHMOND     3.3       5.10     7.13     11.18 (84)
CARLTON        4.1       4.2       6.6       8.10 (58)

Richmond: Riewoldt 3, Butler 2, Castagna 2, Ellis, Lambert, Bolton, Nankervis
Carlton: Casboult 2, Kreuzer 2, Wright, Thomas, C.Curnow, Cripps

Richmond: Rance, Houli, Martin, Lambert, Castagna, Riewoldt
Carlton: Kreuzer, Cripps, Docherty, Gibbs, Casboult, Jones

Richmond: Nil
Carlton: Lamb (concussion), Ed Curnow (knee), Plowman (calf)

Reports: Houli (Richmond) for striking Lamb (Carlton) in the first quarter

Umpires: Stevic, Williamson, McInerney

Official crowd: 64,448 at the MCG