Sidebottom stars, Pies down Saints in AFL

Collingwood have brought St Kilda back down to earth, with Steele Sidebottom starring in a 44-point AFL win at the MCG.

The Saints carried impressive form into Saturday’s clash, having humbled the Western Bulldogs last week, but the Magpies led by 20 points at quarter-time and eased to a 12.9 (81) to 5.7 (37) win.

Sidebottom led the way with 31 possessions and a goal in a powerful midfield performance, with Scott Pendlebury (26 disposals) and Taylor Adams (19) also important.

Brodie Grundy took on Rowan Marshall and Paddy Ryder in the ruck and clearly took the honours with 20 touches and 31 hit-outs.

Nathan Buckley’s men managed just five goals in their much-maligned round-two draw with Richmond, but moved the ball into attack with greater efficiency in the first half.

In his first game for the season, Jaidyn Stephenson booted two goals, as did Jamie Elliott, Brody Mihocek and Adams.

Brett Ratten kept his players on the ground for a stern talking to at halftime after the deficit blew out to 38 points, but the coach didn’t get the desired result.

St Kilda managed just one goal in the second half, to Collingwood’s two, as the game slipped from their grasp.

Bradley Hill was among his new team’s best players again with 25 touches, while Richmond premiership player Dan Butler continued his impressive start with 16 possessions and two goals.

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