Adelaide met Essendon at Docklands Stadium in round 17 but the game’s first half hardly lived up to its coveted Friday night timeslot.
The clash began as a dour affair, with both sides trading behinds for over 20 minutes before a major score was kicked.
Both teams appeared reluctant to apply pressure off the ball but eventually Essendon rose to the occasion and began to take charge.
Adelaide, meanwhile, was reduced to its lowest ever quarter time score against Essendon and its equal third lowest halftime score in history.
The visitors entered forward 50 just 12 times across the opening two stanzas, which was the lowest total in a first half so far this season.
When they did make it to deep into Essendon’s territory, the Crows struggled to execute.
Adelaide recorded 33.3% efficiency inside 50 for just nine points to half time. Matthew Nicks’ side looked to be missing the panache of key forward Taylor Walker, who stayed behind in Adelaide after suffering a neck injury against Brisbane last week.
Fox Footy’s commentary team questioned why the game had been chosen as the weekend's Friday night fixture, especially when top eight sides the Swans and Bulldogs are set to meet later in the weekend.
“We like celebrating great games of footy, and this ain’t one of them,” Melbourne legend Garry Lyon said at halftime.
“(Friday night footy) is the show that people want to watch and right now, we’re not really doing Friday night footy justice,” added Saints great Nick Riewoldt.
Premiership-winning forward Jonathan Brown called the contest, or lack thereof, “disappointing”.
Pundits echoed their sentiments on social media.
Rolling fixture and this was the best they could come up with? 😴😴 #afl#afldonscrows
Cold temperatures make us drowsy, so that explains the first 20 minutes of this game and the complete lack of atmosphere… it wasn’t the piss poor standard at all. The crowd was just asleep. It’s science. #AFLDonsCrows#AFL
Worst quarter of football for the season #AFLDonsCrows
The Bombers went into the main break with a 35-point lead. Archie Perkins was the top scorer with two majors, while Cale Hooker, Jake Stringer, Alec Waterman and Peter Wright also got in on the action.
Harry Schoenberg was the only goal scorer for the visitors to halftime.
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