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Canberra
Tuesday, September 22, 2020
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Giants stun Bombers with epic comeback

The GWS Giants have produced a stellar second half to run down the Essendon Bombers by 4 points at Metricon Stadium for their third straight win.

The Giants trailed by 29 points early in the second half, before kicking six of the final seven goals in wet conditions to record a 8.11 (59) to 8.7 (55) win.

Both sides seemed more intent on defending in the early stages with each side managing just the two behinds for the quarter. The 4 behinds between the sides was the lowest opening quarter for a game since Geelong vs Footscray back in round 1 of 1965.

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Thankfully, the game opened up in the second quarter and it was the Bombers who produced the best footy as they kicked six goals to two to open up a 22-point lead at half time.

The Bombers started the second half much like they finished the first, with Sam Draper kicking an early goal as they stretched their lead to a game high 29 points.

The momentum seemed to be all with the Bombers, but the rain started to fall heavily on the Gold Coast and the Giants seemed to kick into gear.

They kicked the last two goals of the third quarter to reduce the deficit to 16 points and the stage was set for a tense final quarter.

A goal to Jeremy Cameron in the first minute of the last quarter reduced the margin to just 10 points and the Giants quickly had another after some poor discipline from the Bombers.

A frustrated Conor McKenna gave away a 50 metre penalty to Heath Shaw who kicked his second goal of the match to bring the Giants to within a goal with still over 10 minutes on the clock. Shaw hadn’t kicked a goal since 2016, so it was an important time for the veteran defender to stand up and deliver.

The Giants continued to press as they had the ball locked in their forward half but struggled to find the goal to put them in front until some Harry Himmelberg magic.

The ball was in dispute on the wing before Himmelberg soccered the ball ahead then regathered in wet conditions and kicked the ball inside 50 where Cameron ran into the open goal to put the Giants up by 2 points with 5 minutes remaining.

The ball continued to live in the Giants forward line as they searched for the match-sealing goal and were eventually awarded a controversial free kick to Callan Ward.

Ward calmly slotted the goal from the 50 metre line to give the Giants a 10 point lead with just over a minute on the clock.

Adam Saad kicked a magnificent goal from outside 50 for the Bombers to reduce the lead back to 4 points but there was only one second left on the clock and the Giants held on for a famous victory.

Stephen Coniglio continued his fine form with 26 disposals and a goal while Shaw will be talking about his two-goal heroics for a long time to come.

The Giants now sit in 7th spot at the completion of round 10 and have a bye in round 11 before heading to their Perth hub to face the Sydney Swans on Thursday 13 August at Optus Stadium.

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