Adelaide Crows make history by winning their third AFLW premiership

Adelaide Crows make history by winning their third AFLW premiership after holding off fast-finishing Melbourne in 13-point triumph

  • Crows made up for losing last year’s grand final with 13-point win at home 
  • Anne Hatchard named best on ground after collecting game-high 26 disposals 
  • Danielle Ponter kicked two goals for the Crows, her second icing the contest 

Adelaide have become the first team to win three AFLW premierships, holding off a late surge from Melbourne to win the grand final by 13 points.

Four days after finishing second in the AFLW best and fairest, Anne Hatchard was named best on ground, with 26 disposals, five clearances, six tackles and nine marks in a 4.5 (29) to 2.4 (16) win at Adelaide Oval.

In atoning for last season’s grand-final defeat, the Crows have now won three of the five grand finals since the AFLW started, adding the 2022 flag to their 2017 and 2019 triumphs.

The Crows celebrate their third AFLW grand final win, stamping themselves as the first dynasty of the women’s competition

Suffocating pressure was one of the keys to Adelaide's win, which was set up during their dominant first half before the Demons came back at them

Suffocating pressure was one of the keys to Adelaide’s win, which was set up during their dominant first half before the Demons came back at them

Danielle Ponter (two goals) was Adelaide’s spark up forward while Chelsea Randall and Chelsea Biddell double-teamed Tayla Harris to keep the star forward goalless.

Ebony Marinoff and Erin Phillips were also excellent.

Former Carlton and Brisbane forward Harris also earned the unenviable statistic of becoming the first player to lose an AFLW or VFL/AFL grand final with three separate clubs.

All three losses came against the Crows.

Danielle Ponter celebrates with the crowd after kicking one of her two goals. Her second major iced the contest for the home side

Danielle Ponter celebrates with the crowd after kicking one of her two goals. Her second major iced the contest for the home side

Anne Hatchard was named best on ground after leading both sides with 26 disposals

Anne Hatchard was named best on ground after leading both sides with 26 disposals

For Melbourne, Sinead Goldrick (20 disposals) was brave all day in defence while Karen Paxman, Gabrielle Colvin and Eliza McNamara were busy.

Adelaide were suffocating with their pressure in a dominant first half, consistently forcing Melbourne into poor kicks inside 50 where Crows defenders could intercept.

Adelaide drew first blood when defender Libby Birch gave away a free kick off the ball for bumping Ponter.

While Ponter’s shot drifted wide, grand-final inclusion Jasmyn Hewett leapt to take a massive mark on the goal line before snapping the opener.

Adelaide let Melbourne off on multiple occasions throughout the second quarter until Phillips snapped to deliver a 17-point lead.

Melbourne's Casey Sherriff comes off the ground in agony after being slung to the ground in a tackle that left her writhing in pain

Melbourne’s Casey Sherriff comes off the ground in agony after being slung to the ground in a tackle that left her writhing in pain

Kate Hore (left) and Eliza West are pictured after one of Melbourne's goals. They narrowed the gap to just seven points in the final term

Kate Hore (left) and Eliza West are pictured after one of Melbourne’s goals. They narrowed the gap to just seven points in the final term

With it, she became the second AFLW player after Carlton’s Darcy Vescio to reach the 50-goal mark.

Alyssa Bannan gave the Demons life out of nowhere just before half-time when she intercepted Caitlin Gould’s kick across defence and ran into an open goal to keep the half-time margin at 10.

The Crows got off to the perfect start in the second half when Ponter outmuscled Birch in the goal square to mark, then restore a 16-point lead.

From there on Melbourne had a resurgence after putting Daisy Pearce behind the ball with Kate Hore drawing them within two goals.

Erin Phillips raises her arms in triumph at the sound of the final siren. She was one of Adelaide's best as they set an early benchmark for AFLW teams to follow

Erin Phillips raises her arms in triumph at the sound of the final siren. She was one of Adelaide’s best as they set an early benchmark for AFLW teams to follow

Melbourne peppered Adelaide’s goal without reward at the end of the third term and start of the fourth, while Casey Sherriff was forced from the field with a wrist injury.

Then, against the run of play, the Crows broke down the wing and found Ponter, who took a mark, played on and iced the game.

‘I feel on top of the world, that was just insane to hear that final siren,’ Hatchard told ABC Radio amid the celebrations.

‘This is the best f***ing feeling ever!’

There was a lighthearted moment as the Crows stars received their premiership medals, with Nikki Gore falling over as she climbed the stairs. 

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