The Demons have survived a thrilling comeback from North Melbourne to win by three points at the MCG, after debutant Kynan Brown — the son of Demons champ Nathan — made a crucial tackle in the dying moments of his debut game.

Meanwhile, Port Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley has responded after being roundly booed by his fans, who left the game against the Brisbane Lions early. 

And earlier, the ladder-leading Sydney Swans locked up a 12th straight win after dominating the Battle of the Bridge against the GWS Giants.

Re-live the blog below, use the key events tab to check all the major moments from the day, and use the match reports tab to get a rundown of each Saturday clash.

Key events

Key Event

Match report: Melbourne 11.4 (70) def North Melbourne 10.7 (67)

Jack Viney tries to break a tackle during the clash with North Melbourne.(Getty Images)

Melbourne have lifted themselves back into the AFL’s top eight by scrapping their way to a heart-stopping three-point victory over North Melbourne in a fiery encounter.

An all-in melee at halftime brought back memories of decades gone by as the Demons overcame a plucky opponent and a scoreless final term in winning 11.4 (70) to 10.7 (67) at the MCG on Saturday night.

A week after coughing up a 54-point lead against Collingwood, the Kangaroos cut a 39-point deficit to three points with just under four minutes left to play but were unable to find a match-winning goal.

Melbourne’s desperate defence got it done, with a Judd McVee smother, debutant Kynan Brown’s lunging tackle and Max Gawn’s final clearance all helping to drag their side over the line.

The much-needed win shifted the Demons (8-6) back up to eighth place, after defeats in four of their previous five matches before the bye.

North (1-13) remain anchored to the foot of the ladder despite vastly improved form in three matches since their bye.

Cameron Zurhaar was huge for the Kangaroos, kicking three of their six consecutive goals in the final thrust, and finishing with four majors.

Luke Davies-Uniacke (31 disposals), Harry Sheezel (27), Jy Simpkin (25) and George Wardlaw (23) were all influential in North’s comeback.

Davies-Uniacke agonisingly had a late marking attempt slip through his fingers as the Kangaroos launched their final attack in the dying seconds.

Melbourne ball-winner Clayton Oliver (14 disposals) was unable to shake a Will Phillips tag as Jack Viney (25 disposals, 12 clearances) stepped up in the engine room without injured star Christian Petracca.

An all-in brawl at half time will likely see several players from both clubs fined.(Getty Images)

Trent Rivers (21 touches) and Tom Sparrow (16, five clearances) also spent more time through the middle and were important at stages, while ruckman Gawn and defender Steven May battled hard.

Daniel Turner (two) was the Dees’ only multiple goal-kicker, with scoreless Bayley Fritsch held to just six disposals by Jackson Archer.

There was controversy during the third quarter when May faced accusations of staging, having grabbed his head after being brought to ground in an Eddie Ford tackle.

May landed on his shoulder and appeared to drive his own head into the ground before winning a free kick for a dangerous tackle.

Melbourne kicked five goals to one in the first term, led by 15 points at halftime and looked home when the margin ballooned to 39 points late in the third quarter.

But Zurhaar breathed life into the contest with goals either side of three-quarter time and the Kangaroos almost pulled off what would have been their second win of the season.


Thanks for joining us and see you tomorrow

Well that turned out to be an unexpectedly thrilling night.

An incredible comeback from North Melbourne and a real look into the future of what Alastair Clarkson is building at Arden St.

In the end though, a crucial four points for the Demons as the keep touch with that absolutely stacked chasing pack on the ladder.

At the moment it feels like the Swans are far and away the best team, Carlton feels like they’re the next best, then any team from third to 18th could beat any other team on their day.

It’s going to be a blockbuster second half of the season.

Thanks again for joining Chris and I today. Andrew McGarry is next player up to take you through the Sunday action tomorrow with the Bombers playing the Eagles, and the Dockers hosting the Suns.

Join us then and tune into ABC Sport on the radio and the ABC Listen app to keep across all of the action.

Key Event

The final two minutes

Well worth a watch. After a really ugly first half, the footy became top quality in the second half and these final two minutes were exhilarating.

Brown given a post-game award for his tackle

Max Gawn reveals in the post-game chat that Simon Goodwin gives an inspirational act award to a player after each game, and tonight it went to debutant Kynan Brown for his chase down tackle on Nick Larkey.

He only had one touch for the game – the kick from the ensuing free kick – but what a moment for the kid. Well and truly saved the game for the Demons with North on the attack.

Key Event

The Demons win by three points!

That was footy at its absolute best and most heartbreaking for North Melbourne in the final quarter.

From 39 points down, the Kangaroos kicked the final six goals of the game and were on the attack when the siren sounded.

It was a result of fingertips right at the death. A chaos ball from Tom Powell into the F50 could have fallen to Paul Curtis, but Luke Davies-Uniacke went for it and tipped it over his teammate’s head.

Had that not happened – and Curtis took the mark – it would have been a kick after the siren, which we haven’t had yet this year.

A lot to like about the Kangaroos performance, and even though the Dees won, they’d be concerned with how they faded and how much North controlled the middle of the field.

I reckon North was one really good small forward away from winning that game tonight. They were fantastic across the entire field otherwise.

Key Event

Kynan Brown may have just saved the game!

Davies-Uniacke streams through the middle untouched and handballs to Nick Larkey, who has no awareness and gets run down by Brown! It’s a score saving tackle!

Zurhaar has them within a kick!!!

This has been extraordinary from North Melbourne! They are dominating across the field.

Zurhaar roves it about 40m out and hook it through!

There are three minutes left and three points in it!

Kynan Brown is on

The son of Demons champ Nathan Brown comes on for Christian Salem to make his debut.

There’s a lot of players out there whose dad’s played at the top level now. Brown, Viney, Archer, Luke McDonald, Bowey, Scott.

Love to see it.

North have another one! It’s 9 points the difference!

Eddie Ford takes the advantage from a Zurhaar free kick and the Roos are within nine points!

North has another one! It’s 15 points!

Harry Sheezel takes a mark in the pocket and curls it around for the goal! North have the first three of the final quarter!

They are dominating possession here and are starting to get the rewards. It’s well and truly on.

Eddie Ford gets it back to 21 points!

Ford kicks the goal from about 35m on a slight angle after a 50m penalty, and it has to be said the Demons were  unlucky there.

The penalty was for the Dees player not standing on the mark, but he only moved after Ford feigned the handball, which had the interpretation of the rule changed earlier in the year.

At the risk of being done for opinion, it’s not an interpretation I love. Feigned handball or not, the stand rule should be set in stone.

Zurhaar opens the final quarter account

And we’re back to 27 points!

Zurhaar has his third as he gladly accepts a downfield free kick after Dylan Stephens goes down after getting the kick away.

On replay, Caleb Windsor did clip him, but there wasn’t a heap in it.

Key Event

3QT: Demons break the game open to lead by 33

More words at the 3QT break here in what has been a heated game.

A really tough quarter for North Melbourne, who were the better team through the midfield throughout the quarter but couldn’t convert when they got it in the F50, and couldn’t stop the Dees when it entered their D50.

It’s a long way back from here in a fairly low scoring game for the Roos.

Top ball winners on the field are all Kangaroos still, with Davies-Uniacke (22), Wardlaw (20), Simpkin (19) and Sheezel (19). Viney has had it the most for the Demons (18).

Interesting that it’s been a really quiet night for Clayton Oliver with just nine disposals, so the Dees are doing well to be this far ahead with a quiet one from Clarry and no Petracca.

Zurhaar gets his second and there’s a slight pulse

More good run and carry from North, and Zurhaar gets on the end of a beautifully weighted kick from Simpkin.

It’s back to 33 points now.

Now Gawn gets in on the action

The skipper finds himself almost alone 15m directly in front, and that makes it a five goals to one quarter.

It’s been spirited from North, but these last 10 minutes have absolutely killed them.

Key Event

Curtis Taylor hanger

North has had more highlights tonight, even if they can’t convert that to scores.

A mark of the week contender from Curtis Taylor!

Van Rooyen adds to the party for the Dees

A cracking contested mark and the crowd goes up with its ‘rooooooo’ call.

Van Rooyen converts truly, and it’s looking ominous now.

And Sparrow strikes!

We saw the double bird from Ford earlier, now Sparrow keeps the avian theme going by converting a free kick after being held by Xerri in a tackle.

The 27-point lead will be tough to come back from in a low scoring game.

North has made it’s sub as well – Toby Pink is out with a footy injury, Dylan Stephens is in.

Demons get one back

North fans are getting restless here, and I reckon they have had a rough run of it with the umpires this quarter.

Neal-Bullen has his first for the night and the Demons have the crucial 21-point break. That hurts.

LDU how do you do!

And North Melbourne hits straight back via a Luke Davies-Uniacke beauty!

It starts with George Wardlaw bullocking his way with the ball at CHB, handballing to Bayley Scott, who breaks it open through the guts via Teakle and Zurhaar.

LDU gets on the end of it and just guides the kick through beautifully on the run. Lovely footy from North.

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