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Five things we learned from Adelaide v GWS

Jennifer Phelan  September 7, 2017 10:48 PM

Highlights: Adelaide v GWS The Crows and Giants clash in qualifying final 1

1. 'Sauce' is as courageous as they come
Not only did Adelaide ruckman Sam Jacobs play just over a week after the sad passing of his older brother Aaron, 31, but he more than stood up against the formidable Shane Mumford. While the big Giant got on top in the hit-outs early, Jacobs plugged away and got more far done around the ground, with Mumford possession-less to half-time. Jacobs won a free kick in the second quarter and had a shot at goal, which would have been widely celebrated had he sent it through the middle. It was an emotional night for Jacobs and his family, and the quality of the former Blue's character was revealed after the game when he told Channel Seven, "It wasn't about me this week, it was about the club."

Full match coverage and stats

2. September Eddie is a force to be reckoned with
The talls got lost in the misty rain at Adelaide Oval, so Eddie Betts took matters into his own hands. He shrugged off some indifferent recent form, having kicked eight goals since round 20, to be involved in three of the Crows' first majors. He then had three on the board by half-time, and could have had four had he not handed off to Josh Jenkins when they found themselves charging into forward 50 unopposed late in the second term. Betts soaked up the conditions, the occasion and the crowd, and his 276th game will now be his first-ever preliminary final thanks to his wonderful forward antics and the spark they provided

WATCH: Eddie excels under Thursday night lights

3. Crows are dangerous when wet
They've started well in the damp this year, and while it took a little while for Adelaide to settle, Don Pyke's men put the foot to the floor in the second quarter as the rain thickened. Rory Sloane wasn't there, but it didn't matter as the Crows dug in with Hugh Greenwood - Sloane's replacement - and Matt Crouch leading the way. The rain was at its worst in the second quarter, which was when the Crows piled on 5.3 to 0.1 with Eddie Betts too slippery for Heath Shaw. It resulted in the Giants being kept to 11 points in two quarters - the lowest half-time score in a final since Collingwood kicked 1.0 to the main break in the 1960 Grand Final.

Every Crow rated from the first qualifying final

4. The Giants need to fire their weather advisors
All week, the possibility of rain was floated, but it backed off on Thursday when the forecast said the chance of showers would diminish as the day wore on. The Giants picked their team stacked with talls and named Rory Lobb along with Jonathon Patton and Jeremy Cameron, and all of them struggled to get into the game; Lobb having a moment in the second quarter when he was run down by Eddie Betts in the goalsquare, which cost the Giants a major, before Cameron pinged his left hamstring shortly before half-time and sat out the rest of the game. The Giants' problems obviously ran deeper than that, but when things got slick, they were exposed when the Crows kept running.  

Every Giant rated from the first qualifying final

5. Rory rumours prove a big snooze
The Crows ruled Rory Sloane out on Wednesday. The Giants flew Steve Johnson to Adelaide, but didn't pick him. That didn't stop the rumour mill from swirling all day Thursday with social media and talkback radio awash with suggestions Sloane had passed a "last-minute" fitness test and the Crows were set to cop a fine for wrangling a late change that didn't involve the named emergencies, while Johnson was allegedly in the frame for a late call-up. The final teams landed 90 minutes before the bounce, and were exactly as they had initially been lodged - neither player played. Sloane will now be a certainty for the preliminary final, while the Giants will have to consider Johnson next week for their do-or-die semi, in an attempt to shake things up after their stagnant performance.