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Five talking points: Collingwood v Richmond

Highlights: Collingwood v Richmond The Magpies and Tigers clash in round 6

1. Dumb Dunn lets Higgins snag a couple quickly
The football didn't need to go back to the middle for charismatic Tiger Jack Higgins to boot a couple of first quarter goals. With minutes left, Higgins immediately answered a Mason Cox goal with one of his own, hauling the ball in and snapping it through. As he celebrated, Lynden Dunn knocked the draftee to the ground with a big bump and conceded a free kick. Higgins duly converted to give his side an eight-point lead.

 

2. Richmond at the MCG is the litmus test and Collingwood passed
The Tigers dominate at the home of football. Coming into this match the Tigers had won 11 straight games at the venue. This was an opportunity for the Pies to see where they sit in the competition's pecking order. It was a brutal first half in a game that had the intensity of September football and if the players weren't sore enough after a short turnaround, some of them will be in serious pain on Monday. Collingwood matched Richmond for the first three quarters before the relentless Tigers broke the Magpies. Nathan Buckley's side had its three-game winning streak broken but considering it was overrun by a side that had an extra day's break, there will be plenty to take out of this one for Collingwood as it looks to make finals for the first time since 2013.

GAME BREAKER: Caddy kicks a handful in Tigers' big win

3. More score review controversy
There was plenty of debate about whether Josh Caddy's shot from deep in a pocket with just over a couple of minutes left in the second term went through before Dunn's left hand swatted the ball through. On replay, it seemed the entire football had not crossed the goalline when the Pies defender made contact, although plenty seemed to think otherwise. It was judged a behind but the incident again showed up the inadequacies of the current system.

 

4. Quiet return to the Mayne stage
It's been more than a year since Chris Mayne has represented Collingwood, when he played the first three games of 2017. In the second season of a deal that lasts until the end of 2020, the former Fremantle forward had another chance with the short turnaround from Anzac Day as the Magpies nursed a few sore bodies. He had been in impressive VFL form, averaging 24 disposals and a goal while playing on a wing but was relatively quiet against the Tigers, lining up in attack and collecting 10 disposals, going statless in the second and fourth quarters and finishing without a goal. His day begun inauspiciously by giving up a 50m penalty in the first quarter for encroaching the protected zone and didn't improve much after that.

5. Nank is a tank
So much discussion has centred around Brodie Grundy this season and how his exploits in the ruck have helped the Magpies immensely. He starred early but it was his counterpart, Toby Nankervis, who dominated the game in the last quarter and showed he perhaps shouldn't be as unheralded as he is. Damien Hardwick was effusive in his praise after the game, declaring Nankervis among the competition's elite big men, and his intercept marking in defence demonstrated the impact he has around the ground. The premiership Tiger finished with 29 disposals, a number Hardwick joked almost gave him a heart attack.