RICHMOND'S season is in its own hands, with a 16.13 (109) to 10.11 (71) win over Port Adelaide taking the Tigers back into the top eight.
The Tigers relished slippery conditions after half-time, piling on 7.4 in the third quarter as they galloped away to a 38-point win at Adelaide Oval.
Tom Lynch kicked three goals in the ‘premiership quarter’ before Aliir Aliir relieved an undersized Trent McKenzie, as Dion Prestia (32 disposals, 10 clearances) and a vintage Trent Cotchin (31 and six) wrested control in the clearances to help the Tigers to victory.
Ollie Wines (32 for the match), Travis Boak (27 and eight clearances) and Zak Butters had plenty of the footy and the Tigers were wasting opportunities in attack, although Shai Bolton had kicked two crucial goals – one after the quarter-time siren and the second a typically elusive snap just before the main break.
At half-time, it looked as if the game was heading to a usual Port Adelaide-Richmond struggle, with Charlie Dixon and Jeremy Finlayson proving a handful up forward despite limited opportunities.
Port Adelaide had appeared to kick into gear at the start of the third.
Miles Bergman's high snap goal came in the first 27 seconds, as man mountain Dixon landed heavily on Nick Vlastuin in a marking contest, ruling the tough Tiger and key interceptor out for the remainder of the game.
Cotchin had other ideas, continuing his recent strong form with a fierce attack on the footy, while Prestia combined beautifully with Toby Nankervis (42 hitouts, 29 disposals), who took advantage of his experience over second-gamer Brynn Teakle.
Lynch and Bolton subsequently feasted, with Jack Riewoldt also chipping in with an impressive contested mark running back with the flight.
As they have done so many times this year, the Power kept their heads and fought out the final quarter well, stemming the flow of Tiger goals, but were unable to make a decent impact on the scoreboard.
Daniel Rioli – almost playing as a third winger, such was the amount of ground he covered out of defence – kicked two goals in the first half and was a key driver up the ground.
Connor Rozee received some treatment for a sprained left knee after getting his leg caught underneath him, but played out the game, taking a soaring hanger in the goal-square in the final term.
Marlion Pickett provided a fourth-quarter highlight when having a shot for goal tight on the boundary. Receiving a considerable level of advice from the crowd, Pickett slotted the set shot without even entering the field of play.
Player of the Match
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PORT ADELAIDE 3.1 6.4 9.6 10.11 (71)
RICHMOND 4.4 7.6 14.10 16.13 (109)
Port Adelaide: Dixon 2, Finlayson 2, Duursma, Gray, Burgoyne, Bergman, Butters, Rozee
Richmond: Lynch 4, Bolton 4, D. Rioli 2, Cumberland 2, Ross, M. Rioli, Riewoldt, Pickett
Port Adelaide: Wines, Boak, Dixon, Houston, Finlayson
Richmond: Cotchin, Prestia, Bolton, D.Rioli, Lynch, Nankervis
Port Adelaide: Rozee (knee)
Richmond: Vlastuin (ribs)
Port Adelaide: Riley Bonner (unused)
Richmond: Jason Castagna (replaced Vlastuin in the third quarter)