Jesse Hogan celebrates a goal during round four, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

GOALSNEAK Toby Greene's five-goal haul has fired Greater Western Sydney to a 28-point victory over Gold Coast and top spot on the AFL ladder.

Greene led a threatening forward line in the 18.9 (117) to 13.11 (89) triumph at Mt Barker in the Adelaide Hills in Sunday's Gather Round game.

GWS reclaim top spot with a fourth successive win while the Suns (2-2) have now lost consecutive matches.


Greene marshalled the Giants' multi-faceted attack: Jesse Hogan kicked four goals, Callum Brown had three, and Jake Riccardi and Stephen Coniglio (28 disposals) scored two.

In defence, Harry Himmelberg was superb with 26 possessions, halfback Lachie Whitfield (29 touches) was creative, and midfielders Coniglio, Josh Kelly (27) and Tom Green (23) were influential.

Gold Coast defender Mac Andrew was eye-catching with 24 disposals and 10 marks, while on-ballers Noah Anderson (32, one goal), Matt Rowell (26 touches, one goal) and Sam Flanders (29) impressed.

Spearhead Ben King kicked three goals and Malcolm Rosas snared two in two minutes in the third term

Rosas' double gave the Suns the lead late in the third quarter after coach Damien Hardwick axed seven players in a brutal response to a 48-point hammering from the Western Bulldogs last-start.

SUNS v GIANTS Full match coverage and stats

Hardwick culled a senior core, with Brandon Ellis, Alex Sexton, Connor Budarick, Levi Casboult, Ben Long among them.

The Suns unveiled a trio of first-gamers - Sam Clohesy, Ethan Read and Will Graham. Clohesy, Read and second-gamer Jed Walter banked their first AFL goals.

GWS kicked four of the initial five majors and led 5.0 to 3.3 at quarter-time, with Greene and Hogan scoring two each.


Aaron Cadman extended their lead to 14 points before Rowell sparked a sudden Suns scoring spurt.

The on-baller's influence grew as Gold Coast kicked four goals in 15 minutes. A Rowell snap put them five points up before a late Greene strike edged the Giants ahead by two points at halftime, 8.3 to 7.7.

After the Suns briefly regained the lead, Greene again was in the spotlight when kicking his fourth major after being manhandled behind play by Andrew - a rare mistake in his dominant display.


The Giants logged five goals to the Suns' four in a see-sawing third quarter as the pressure increased.

GWS took an eight-point advantage, 13.4 to 11.8, after Coniglio and Gold Coast's Rosas scored two goals each in the quarter.

And the Giants then streeted to victory with five goals to two in the final term as Greene and Hogan added to their goal tallies.

Play the kids
Damien Hardwick raised eyebrows during the week when he named three debutants at the expense of more experienced players, but the move paid off. While the Suns didn't win, they came a lot closer than expected against one of the top teams in the competition, and unveiled the next generation of talent in the process. While high draft picks Ethan Read and Will Graham were solid in their first outings, it was rookie pick Sam Clohesy that caught the eye with his 22 disposals, eight marks and a goal.


A day on the Greene
Toby Greene was at his best against the Suns, booting five goals and having three goal assists. Working in tandem with the in-form Jesse Hogan, Greene's creativity and goal smarts were on show. The only blemish on an otherwise excellent performance was a tackle on Mac Andrew that may attract the match review officer's attention.



GOLD COAST                                 3.3       7.7      11.8     13.11 (89)
GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY        5.0       8.3     13.4     18.9 (117)

Gold Coast: King 3, Rosas 2, Fiorini, Walter, Holman, Clohesy, Ainsworth, Rowell, Read, Anderson
Greater Western Sydney: Greene 5, Hogan 4, Brown 3, Riccardi 2, Coniglio 2, Cadman, O'Halloran

Gold Coast: Anderson, Andrew, Flanders, Clohesy, Witts
Greater Western Sydney: Coniglio, Greene, Whitfield, Hogan, Kelly

Gold Coast: David Swallow (replaced Bailey Humphrey in the fourth quarter)
Greater Western Sydney: James Peatling (replaced Harvey Thomas in the third quarter)

Crowd: 9,337 at Adelaide Hills