Blues make it three wins from five with victory over Swans
THE Carlton AFL revival continued with a seven-point win over Sydney at a windswept SCG on Saturday.
The Blues had a 19-point final-quarter lead slashed to seven, but held on to record a 9.15 (69) to 8.14 (62) win, their third in five games under caretaker coach David Teague.
It was Carlton's first win at the ground since 2011, following six consecutive losses, and just their second victory over the Swans from their past 12 contests.
Carlton played one man down in the second half after former Saint Hugh Goddard had his Blues senior debut cut short by an accidental elbow to his cheekbone from Nick Blakey.
Former Swan Nic Newman showed plenty of poise and distributed well in difficult conditions, tallying a match-high 32 possessions.
Marc Murphy, Ed Curnow and Patrick Cripps all found plenty of ball, with the Blues accumulating 13 more clearances and 19 more contested possessions.
Carlton had good marking targets up forward in Levi Casboult and Harry McKay, while Sydney struggled and the loss surely ends any faint hopes of a spot in the finals series.
The Blues scored the first eight points of the game and trailed just once in the first quarter by a point before going in level at the first break.
They then kicked the first three goals of the second quarter to lead by 17 and had a 10-point advantage at half-time.
A strong swirling breeze with winds gusting up to 40km/h made kicking accurately difficult, with Sydney scoring 3.10 by the main break and Carlton 5.8.
The Blues notched eight successive behinds either side of half-time, with three straight Sydney goals, cutting the gap to a single point.
Marc Murphy broke the Blues goal drought to give them a seven-point lead going into the last quarter.
Successive majors to Casboult and Jack Silvagni set up a 19-point buffer for the visitors, but goals to Isaac Heeney and Sam Reid reduced the deficit back to seven.