AFL Heroes & Villains Round 7: Gold star Gray sinks Blues, Matt's mistake

Round 7 of the 2020 AFL season saw a club's GOAT produce a moment of magic, a new flag favourite emerge and a defensive gaffe which has to be seen to be believed. Here are this week's Heroes & Villains.


Robbie Gray: For a fair while against the Blues it looked as though a number of Port players were putting their hands up for villain status.

In a tight final term, the Power squandered chance after chance and with seconds to play it looked as if they were about to lose top spot on the ladder.

But up stepped the ever-reliable Robbie Gray, who slid in to mark 45m out from goal on a tight angle. The siren sounded seconds later and only an after-the-siren major would rescue Port.

Just as every young kid practices and fantasizes about in the backyard, Gray slotted the set shot and was immediately mobbed by teammates, who for a brief moment forgot about social distancing protocols.

Gray, who has been a little off his devastating best in 2020, absolutely owned the moment and the kick will go down in Port Adelaide's history.

Is Robbie Port's GOAT? He certainly strengthened his case in Round 7.

Cody Weightman: The kids are alright. In what has been a year for the debutants, young pup Cody Weightman added his name to the list of young players to keep an eye on throughout the rest of the 2020 season.

The No. 15 draft pick joined the illustrious club of kicking a goal with their first touch in footy - and what a goal it was. After clinging onto an impressive pack mark close to the boundary line inside 50 against the Bombers on Friday night, Weightman leaned back and off a couple of steps, sent a booming banana right through the middle of the sticks.

He might only have had nine touches in the Doggies' strong 42-point win, but two of those were goals (among four score involvements), while he also took two contested marks - the one which led to his first snag, and another speccie on the wing.

The 19-year-old has a bit of spunk about him, with a haircut that would make Dogs skipper Marcus Bontempelli beam, and he brings to side an on-field energy somewhat reminiscent of a young Dale Thomas when emerged for Collingwood all those years ago.

This 2019 draft class just continues to impress.

Real deal Lions: A trip to western Sydney to face GWS is one of the more daunting tasks in football, but Chris Fagan's side was more than up to the job in Round 7.

The Lions, reeling from a disappointing loss to Geelong last weekend, started with a flurry, kicking the first four goals of the game to leave the hosts stunned.

The speed of ball movement and unpredictability in the forward line had the Giants guessing all afternoon and despite a third quarter mini fight back from the hosts, Brisbane eased clear to move into outright second on the ladder.

To highlight the Lions' dominance, they finished up with 22 more inside 50s and 43 more marks over the course of the game. Against the Giants, no less.

Perhaps Brisbane is the team to beat in 2020...


Cats crisis: As if losing to Collingwood by 22 points wasn't a bitter pill to swallow, things only got worse for the Cats.

In the first quarter at Optus Stadium, skipper Joel Selwood pulled up from a contest, clutched his hamstring and immediately came from the ground. He played no further part in the game and is likely to miss the next four weeks - a huge blow, particularly with fellow midfielder Mitch Duncan already sidelined through injury.

Then, on Saturday, Gary Ablett returned to Melbourne to be reunited with his family. Ablett's son is battling a rare degenerative disease.

Ablett will miss at least two weeks of action given a return to the Perth hub would see him likely to have to undergo the mandatory 14 days of quarantine, meaning he'll be unable to play during that time.

The Cats better wrap Patrick Dangerfield up in cotton wool. They can't afford to lose their third champion.

Matt Taberner: One thing that's been plainly established during the whacky rollercoaster which is season 2020, is that goals come at a premium.

In Round 7 alone, North Melbourne managed just two for the entire game, Geelong and Fremantle just five. But for the Dockers, it should have been six.

For the most part, Matt Tabener had a decent game in his side's loss to the Eagles. But, Matt, mate, when you get the chance to kick a 'gimme' just two metres out, directly in front ... make sure of it!

Instead, and early in the game with a home crowd behind him, he squandered the unmissable, with West Coast's Tom Cole doing his best Heath Shaw on Nick Riewoldt impression to force Taberner off the footy and rush a behind.

Sure, it wasn't a moment late on in the match, but teams are struggling to kick decent scores in 2020 and a goal to the Dockers at that point might well have kickstarted a run.

But hey, at least it wasn't a Grand Final.

Lachie Keeffe: When you're trailing by two goals in a pivotal clash against a fellow top eight side, you simply can't afford to have any sort of brain fade.

Unfortunately for GWS, Lachie Keeffe didn't receive this memo.

The Giants defender did something in the third quarter which would have had coach Leon Cameron pulling his hair out and raging inside the coach's box.

After giving away a free kick for a push out on Eric Hipwood, a petulant Keeffe ferociously threw the ball on the ground as he argued with the umpire.

We get that Keeffe may have been frustrated with the free kick, but you just can't do that! What's worse? Throwing your arms up in the air as if you don't know why the umpire just paid one of the most obvious 50m penalties in recent times.

Keeffe can thank his lucky stars Hipwood missed the set shot, but it's still inexcusable behaviour.