Sport AFL Crows do it easy over St Kilda
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Crows do it easy over St Kilda

Patrick Dangerfield and James Podsiadly
Getty
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Adelaide have belatedly kick-started their AFL season with a thumping 13-goal win over St Kilda at Etihad Stadium.

The Crows were full of run in a 20.16 (136) to 7.8 (50) victory on Sunday, their first of the season.

Powered by midfielders Scott Thompson and Rory Sloane, Adelaide allowed their forwards to feast.

Eddie Betts and James Podsiadly had their best games since crossing the border, while Josh Jenkins kicked a game-high four goals.

The win eases pressure on Brenton Sanderson, who was without a win in Melbourne since round nine last year, when the Crows memorably recovered a 30-point last-quarter deficit from North Melbourne.

There were no such heroics needed on Sunday, though, as the Crows led all day, improving their 44-point halftime lead to 86 at the final siren.

Adelaide’s day out started early when Betts created then kicked their opening goals.

St Kilda replied with two spectacular goals of their own – a Rhys Stanley long bomb and a piece of magic from Jack Steven.

With two Crows bearing down on him, Stanley performed a textbook overhead kick from 5m out to the 22,923-strong crowd’s delight.

But that was as good as it got for St Kilda, who couldn’t sustain pressure on the South Australians.

After the first break, the Crows lifted their pace, and two Jenkins majors among three quick goals extended their lead to 35 points.

Shortly after Nathan Wright was subbed out with a suspected lower-leg fracture after taking a huge hit from teammate Jarryn Geary.

He later re-emerged to the bench in a moon boot but would not have enjoyed the view.

The Crows kicked five goals to one in the second quarter to end the match as a contest.

As the rout deepened, Jared Petrenko pulled out the party tricks from the pocket, snapping a top goal with a ground-grubbing banana.

Each St Kilda goal came with a quick Adelaide reply, and usually two, with the out-of-form Patrick Dangerfield becoming one of 12 Crows on their goal-kickers list for the day late in the third quarter.

A late scuffle between Matthew Wright and Jack Newnes was the only fight shown by the Saints, who managed just one final term goal to five.

St Kilda coach Alan Richardson will hope that after two bright wins to start the season, this loss does not begin a trend for his young side.

AAP