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Dogs hold off Blues in low-scoring scrap

Highlights: Western Bulldogs v Carlton The Bulldogs and Blues clash in round 14
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 4: Debutant Caleb Daniel of the Bulldogs celebrates his first AFL goal during the 2015 AFL round 14 match between the Western Bulldogs and the Carlton Blues at Etihad Stadium, Melbourne, Australia on July 4, 2015. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media)
Debutant Caleb Daniel celebrates his first goal

THE LEAGUE'S shortest player made a big first impression as the Western Bulldogs beat Carlton on Saturday night by 11 points.

Caleb Daniel was subbed on at half-time in his debut game to replace injured ruckman Jordan Roughead and was outstanding in the 9.10 (64) to 7.11 (53) win.

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The victory solidifies the seventh-placed Bulldogs position in the top eight.

Matthew Boyd celebrated his 250th game with 31 disposals and was among his side's best, while Jake Stringer kicked three goals.

Daniel, who stands at 167cm, kicked a goal in the third term and had 14 disposals to be among their best.

Carlton suffered a serious blow early in the last term when young gun Patrick Cripps was forced off with an ankle injury.

And the Bulldogs' Toby McLean hurt his arm in a marking contest just before the final siren, while a back problem forced Roughead out of the game.

Talking points: Western Bulldogs v Carlton

The Blues kicked the last three goals of the game and were left ruing poor goalkicking when they had the game on their terms in the second quarter.

The Bulldogs burst out of the blocks, kicking three goals in the first 10 minutes.

But Carlton steadied and restricted the damage, only trailing by 14 points at quarter-time.

The Blues then fluffed a golden chance to take control of the game.

They were on top for much of the second quarter, but only managed 3.6 and led by three points at half-time.

Late in the quarter, the Blues looked set for an easy goal when they had Cameron Wood and Levi Casboult in the clear.

But the pair somehow squandered the opportunity, the worst of several scrappy passages of play during the second quarter.

Carlton did not manage a goal from Dennis Armfield's first of the game near half-time until his second 10 minutes into the last quarter.

The Bulldogs kicked two goals early in the last quarter to take a 28-point lead and that proved enough of a buffer, despite Carlton's late surge.


Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge revealed that veteran defender Dale Morris played out the game despite suffering a suspected broken jaw in the first quarter.

Beveridge added that McLean might have badly hurt his left AC joint.

He said the Blues were all over his side in the first half, but the Bulldogs found a way to secure the win.

"It was obviously pleasing to see our players to just get a little bit better in the contest, a little bit better with our ball movement," he said.

"It was a good effort by the boys to arrest the slide.

He praised Daniel for his impact in the second half.

"Obviously he's not over-blessed with height, but he makes up for it in a lot of areas," Beveridge said.

Carlton coach John Barker was left lamenting missed opportunities in the second and third quarters.

"The second quarter is probably ball use, we just lacked that polish and poise at the right time," he said.

"Third quarter, we probably didn't defend as well as we had in the previous two (quarters)."

Powerful Dog Jake Stringer celebrates one of his goals against the Blues. Picture: AFL Media

WESTERN BULLDOGS  3.3  4.4   7.8    9.10 (64)
CARLTON                      1.1  4.7  4.11  7.11 (53) 

Western Bulldogs: Stringer 3, Dahlhaus, Grant, Dickson, Daniel, Boyd, Wallis
Carlton: Armfield 2, Casboult, Buckley, Everitt, Tutt, Henderson 

Western Bulldogs: Boyd, Picken, Macrae, Stringer, Stevens, Murphy
Carlton: Murphy, Cripps, Tuohy, Armfield, Simpson, Bell

Western Bulldogs: Jordan Roughead (back), Toby McLean (left shoulder), Dale Morris (jaw)
Carlton: Sam Rowe (general soreness) replaced in the selected side by Jason Tutt, Andrejs Everitt (knee), Patrick Cripps (ankle) 

Western Bulldogs: Caleb Daniel replaced Jordan Roughead at half-time
Carlton: Mark Whiley replaced Andrejs Everitt in the third quarter

Reports: Nil

Umpires: Kamolins, Findlay, Wallace

Official crowd: 31,445 at Etihad Stadium

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs