GREATER Western Sydney’s final hopes are hanging by a thread after falling just short of a miraculous AFL comeback in a 94-all draw with last-placed North Melbourne.
The Kangaroos held a 28-point lead heading into the final term on Sunday afternoon at Blundstone Area and looked on track for an upset win.
But after a poor first three-quarters, the Giants mustered a late revival with two Daniel Lloyd goals levelling scores with just over a minute to go.
Lloyd nailed a hand-off from long range to reduce the margin to six and then grabbed a pack mark to even it up.
He had a tough chance on the run to seal a win late but his kick went out of bounds as the match finished 14.10 (94) to 14.10 (94).
Giants defender Adam Kennedy had an opportunity to kick a miracle score after the siren from outside 50m on the boundary following a North Melbourne turnover but it fell well short.
North Melbourne were left to lament a victory that got away, while the Giants would be kicking themselves after a sluggish start in an important fixture.
The result leaves GWS six points outside the top eight.
North Melbourne’s Ben Cunnington, Nick Larkey, Cameron Zurhaar and Tasmanian product Tarryn Thomas all grabbed a brace of goals.
After leading 58-52 at the main break, the Kangaroos scored four unanswered goals in the third quarter and opened up the biggest margin of the match heading into the last term.
The Giants moved stand-in skipper Toby Greene into the middle and slotted the first three majors of the fourth quarter.
On return from a fractured shoulder, Greene picked up six disposals and a goal for the match.
The Giants’ Josh Kelly, who slotted two goals including a stunner on the run to spark the late revival, was the top disposal-getter for the match with 39, followed by North Melbourne’s Aaron Hall (35).
(C) AAP 2021
NORTH MELBOURNE 5.1 9.4 13.7 14.10 (94)
GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY 4.1 8.4 8.9 14.10 (94)
Goals: North Melbourne: B Cunnington 2 C Zurhaar 2 N Larkey 2 T Thomas 2 B Scott J Mahony J Stephenson L Davies-Uniacke T Goldstein T Powell. Greater Western Sydney: D Lloyd 2 H Himmelberg 2 J Finlayson 2 J Kelly 2 M Flynn 2 C Ward I Hill T Greene T Taranto.
Umpires: Jacob Mollison, Jamie Broadbent, Justin Power.
Official Crowd: 3,462 at Blundstone Arena.