A 10-goal second half from the Demons resulted in the 13.7 (85) to 5.12 (42) win at a cold MCG, despite a nervous start on both sides leading to just a one-point margin at the main break.

Facing the side for which he played 271 games, it wasn't the result new Tigers coach Adem Yze was hoping for, with more pain added when Jacob Hopper was subbed out of the game with a hamstring injury in the third quarter.

It was an opening half laden with skill errors and a lack of composure. Both teams appeared panicked in the face of the marquee fixture, overrunning the footy, dropping marks and hitting opposition players lace out with kicks inside 50.


It took until the third term for Melbourne to settle, sparked by some big efforts from captain Max Gawn (23 disposals, 26 hitouts, one goal).

Fourth-gamer Daniel Turner became the main target in attack, brought into the side for an omitted Ben Brown. Coming in without an AFL goal to his name, he kicked three, with his celebrations escalating with each major.

The Tigers controlled the territory in the first quarter, winning the inside 50 count 17-11, but didn't break through for their first goal until the 23-minute mark. Coming off the boot of Mykelti Lefau (four inside 50s, one goal), it was his defensive efforts higher up the field that launched the scoring chain.


Although Richmond opted for dual rucks in Toby Nankervis and Sam Naismith, it was Lefau playing a physical ruck role at stoppages in attack, adding a different challenge for Gawn to contend with.

In the face of that barrage of Richmond forward entries, Jake Lever starred for Melbourne with 26 disposals, 11 marks, and 15 intercepts, repeatedly putting his body on the line, while Steven May (23 disposals, 12 marks) was also solid in the air down back.

Richmond did manage to rediscover the intense pressure game that worked so beautifully against Sydney three weeks earlier, playing a big part in Melbourne's worried ball movement, particularly in attack.


With Marlion Pickett tasked with limiting Christian Petracca's output, and Kamdyn McIntosh named as the sub, it was a fresh look outside the contest for Richmond. Hugo Ralphsmith and Sam Banks patrolled the wings, battling it out with Melbourne's Ed Langdon and Caleb Windsor.

The Pickett tag, although effective early in the game, simply wasn't enough to contain Petracca for the duration of the game. The Demon finished the game with 23 disposals, six clearances and a goal, despite the slow start.

Player of the Match

Who was Player of the Match in our Round 7 loss to Melbourne? Vote to win a 2025 team-signed guernsey, team-signed footy, VIP match-day experience & photo with the team.


RICHMOND 1.3 3.6 4.8 5.12 (42)
MELBOURNE 2.3 3.5 8.7 13.7 (85)

Richmond: M.Rioli jnr 2, Lefau, Martin, Bolton,
Melbourne: Turner 3, Fritsch 2, Pickett 2, Laurie 2, van Rooyen, Gawn, Windsor, Petracca

Richmond: Lefau, Broad, Dow, Hopper, Baker
Melbourne: Lever, Gawn, Oliver, Turner, May

Richmond: Hopper (hamstring)
Melbourne: Nil

Richmond: Kamdyn McIntosh (replaced Jacob Hopper in the third quarter)
Melbourne: Bailey Laurie (replaced Caleb Windsor in the final quarter)

Crowd: 72,840 at the MCG