Jeff Garlett and Jesse Hogan were outstanding in Melbourne Demons’ win over Brisbane Lions.Small forwards Jesse Hogan and Jeff Garlett have earned high praise after they stood tall in Melbourne’s 26-point AFL win over a gallant Brisbane Lions at the Gabba.
The pair proved the difference as the Demons held on after Brisbane reeled in a 42-point third term deficit to draw level with 20 minutes left on Saturday night.
Garlett provided the spark with four goals, 17 disposals and five marks while Hogan was ever present with five majors, 22 touches and nine marks.
Garlett earned comparisons with Adelaide livewire Eddie Betts from Lions great Jonathan Brown after inspiring the Demons’ first win of the year.
“Along with Eddie Betts, Garlett is one of the premier small forwards in the competition,” Brown told Fox Footy.
Paul Roos added on Fox Footy: “He (Garlett) really was the difference…when the game was really up for grabs in the last quarter and they needed someone to stand up.
“When you’re there as a small forward, you don’t get a lot of opportunities so to kick four goals is a terrific return.
“The two of them, in combination, they’ve had a great game.”
Demons coach Simon Goodwin heaped praise on Hogan after watching him overcome a tough 2017 marred by setbacks on and off the field including a cancer scare.
“He has done a hell of a lot of work over the summer both as a midfielder and as a forward, and he got the rewards (against Lions),” he said.
“I certainly think his forward craft has improved.
“He’s really commanding that position deep inside forward 50m.
“He is setting himself up for a really strong season.”
Goodwin praised his team for holding their nerve when Brisbane levelled the scores at 65-all 10 minutes into the final term after inspiration from 100-gamer Allen Christensen and Charlie Cameron.
“I loved the way we responded at that point when the scores got level,” he said.
“We were brilliant around the ball late in the game.”
Melbourne next take on North Melbourne at the MCG on Saturday.