Carlton have outlasted a battling North Melbourne to claim a narrow seven-point AFL win on Saturday.
The Blues, beaten by a kick after the siren against Port Adelaide last weekend, did enough to keep their noses in front at a rain-lashed Gabba and claim a 9.10 (64) to 9.3 (57) win.
The loss is injury-hit North’s sixth in a row but was a hugely improved display from last weekend’s heavy loss to Richmond.
Jack Newnes, Matthew Kennedy and David Cuningham each kicked two goals for the Blues, while Bailey Scott had three majors for North in a losing effort.
The Kangaroos were their own worst enemies in the opening quarter as Carlton raced out to an early 23-point lead.
Todd Goldstein and Cameron Zurhaar both missed easy opportunities, and Jamie Macmillan’s underhit handpass fell straight to Cuningham for Carlton’s fourth goal of the term.
North responded in the second quarter, kicking four goals to Carlton’s two, including one to Jasper Pittard that took a wicked bounce past Liam Jones.
Scott’s second and third majors in a rain-marred third term got the Kangaroos within a kick of the lead.
They could have even snatched an advantage heading in to the last quarter when Jared Polec took a mark on the siren.
But Jasper Pittard’s decision to come in and push over Marc Murphy led to umpires penalising the North forward for his ill-discipline and reversing the free-kick.
There was more poor discipline on show in the final quarter when Jack Martin was gifted 100m with the Kangaroos conceding back-to-back 50m penalties but the Blues recruit missed his shot.
That slip did not prove costly though, despite a late goal on the run by Aaron Hall setting up a tense finish.
The Blues played out the second half a man down after forward Mitch McGovern did not feature following halftime due to a hamstring injury.
There was also a pre-game omission for the Blues with Harry McKay withdrawn due to a knee injury.