Hawthorn's Shaun Burgoyne celebrates a goal on Sunday
HAWTHORN has plunged Melbourne's season of misery to further depths with a ruthless 95-point drubbing of Mark Neeld's struggling team at the MCG on Sunday.
Although the Demons competed hard at times and even won the third quarter, Alastair Clarkson's powerhouse side was far too strong in the 21.17 (143) to 6.12 (48) win in front of 28,546 fans. Five talking points: Hawthorn v Melbourne
It was the Hawks' ninth straight victory, and sees them head to their round 11 bye on top of the AFL ladder.
But the post-match focus will rest squarely with Melbourne and its coach Neeld, who will meet the club's board on Monday afternoon amid speculation he may lose his job.Change is coming, says Demons president
The Demons sit second-bottom on the table with just one win, and their nine losses have come at an average margin of almost 77 points.
He said he had received no indication from the club's leaders that his job was in jeopardy and, if asked by the board whether he should continue, would "absolutely" implore them to stand by him.
"We've got a really clear vision of where we're going, we've got a really clear pathway that we're following, and we haven't hidden that from anybody," Neeld said.
"We believe we're assembling a really good list that will take us forward."
Small forward Luke Breust was the chief destroyer for the victors with five goals in an outstanding display, while Jarryd Roughead booted three, and four other Hawks added two goals.
Click here to vote for the three best Hawthorn players from the match
Midfielder Brad Sewell had 31 disposals, including 14 in a blistering first quarter, while Jordan Lewis, Shaun Burgoyne and Isaac Smith were other key contributors.
"There was some good pressure from our players right across the field that forced Melbourne into a lot of errors, and didn’t allow them to get the scoring opportunities that perhaps they would have liked, particularly early in the game," he said.
"It was good to get some scoreboard pressure and really limit the opportunities they had in their front half."
The form of recruit Chris Dawes was the major positive for Melbourne, the key forward amassing 21 disposals, 12 marks and a goal in an encouraging day's work.
Click here to vote for the three best Melbourne players from the match
At the other end, James Frawley battled hard against Lance Franklin, the Hawthorn spearhead held to two goals, both from free kicks.
Through the middle of the ground, Nathan Jones toiled relentlessly with 28 disposals and 11 clearances, while David Rodan, in his first senior appearance since round five, had nine clearances and laid 11 tackles.
Inaccurate in front of goal in the first quarter, the Hawks found range in the second and broke the game open with nine goals to one, going to half-time with a 69-point buffer.
The Demons pegged the margin back 11 points in the third quarter as Hawthorn's intensity dropped off, before the ladder leaders took back control in the final term and piled on a further seven goals.
It was Hawthorn's 10th straight win over Melbourne, in a run dating back to 2006.
The Demons face Collingwood in their marquee Queen's Birthday match-up next Monday, before a bye in round 12.
Hawthorn's Jordan Lewis, Ben Stratton, Grant Birchall and Taylor Duryea celebrate on Sunday. Photo: AFL Media
MELBOURNE 0.3 1.7 5.10 6.12 (48)
HAWTHORN 3.9 12.10 14.14 21.17 (143)
Howe, Dawes, Watts, Davey, Kent, Evans
Breust 5, Roughead 3, Hill 2, Smith 2, Franklin 2, Puopolo 2, Lewis, Burgoyne, Birchall, Grimley, Simpkin
Dawes, N. Jones, Frawley, Rodan.
Sewell, Breust, Burgoyne, Lewis, Smith, Mitchell.
Luke Tapscott replaced Matt Jones in the third quarter.
Kyle Cheney replaced Luke Hodge in the third quarter.
Farmer, Hay, Mitchell
28,546 at the MCG.