Top 5 AFL ‘Game Saver’ Classics

Andrew Hendrie:
Best AFL Comebacks

One punter’s pain is another’s pleasure. To promote the launch of PALMERBET’S New Bookie Bag Game Saver product, we have sifted through the AFL archives to find the top five classic comebacks and crazy capitulations of the modern era.

2001 Round 16: Essendon 27.9 (171) def North Melbourne 25.9 (159)

The comeback to end all comebacks. In recovering from 69 points down, Essendon recorded the biggest ever comeback in AFL/VFL history on this day in 2001. North had shot out of the blocks to lead 91-22 ten minutes into the second term, but the Bombers then booted nine straight before half-time to cut the deficit. The third quarter saw the pair go pound-for-pound but the Denis Pagan-led Roos still held a 14-point lead at the final break. An eight goals to three last quarter however saw the Dons home, with Matthew Lloyd (9 goals) the star.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kdYSbdu6Teg

2007 Round 3: Carlton 18.17 (125) def Essendon 17.20 (122)

In Carlton’s 156-year history, this is their greatest comeback. And it was largely thanks to one man: Brendon Fevola. The Fevolution single-handedly dragged his side back from a 48-point deficit and,
despite kicking his first late in the second term, would finish with eight majors. Playing on Dustin Fletcher no less, it was a key-forward masterclass by the Blues big man.

2008 Round 7: Melbourne 17.17 (119) def Fremantle 15.23 (113)

By Round 7 in 2008, the Dees were winless and, 50 points down at half-time, things were all too familiar for weary fans. But on this day, a switch flicked. Melbourne not only pulled off the greatest comeback in their 150-year history, but the second-highest comeback from a half-time deficit ever. Still 26 points down early in the final term, Russell Robertson and Austin Wonaeamirri each booted three last quarter goals to seal a famous win.

2013 Round 13: Brisbane 15.13 (103) def Geelong 14.14 (98)

The ‘Miracle on Grass’ is one of modern footy’s best tales. Midway through the 2013 season Geelong were flying at 10-1, while the Lions were battling at 3-8. As $5.66 outsiders at home, the 52-point deficit late in the third term was expected. But a rollicking final term – culminating in an after-the-siren goal from 200th gamer Ash McGrath – would see the Lions home by five points.

2015 Round 6: Western Bulldogs 13.9 (87) def by St Kilda 14.10 (94)

After trailing all day, by as much as 55 points, a stunning sequence of events would see the Saints snatch the lead in the 115th minute. The siren rang out soon after to seal the fifth-biggest comeback in AFL/VFL history. Even coach Alan Richardson admitted post-game that he “didn’t see it coming”.

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