Brenton Sanderson during the three-quarter break. Picture: Simon Cross. Source: The Advertiser CROWS coach Brenton Sanderson calls it “the must-win game we should not have lost”. And the six-point collapse to West Coast at AAMI Stadium has left Adelaide making up the numbers in a season of major disappointment at West Lakes. But with no first or second-round draft picks – as a result of the Kurt Tippett scandal – to prompt any “tanking” at Adelaide, Sanderson has vowed to press on after watching is erratic players surrender their AFL finals chances by conceding three goals to the Eagles in the last six minutes. Crows lose to Eagles by six points “We will not change anything in how we will approach any game; our next objective is Collingwood (at the MCG on Friday night),” said Sanderson after his Crows were left with a 6-8 win-loss record and needing to win at least six of eight games to be a finalist. End of sidebar. Return to start of sidebar. There are many sub-plots in last night’s dramatic clash – key forward Shaun McKernan’s report for striking with his left elbow; bewildering umpiring, particularly from the experience Stephen McBurney; and three score reviews all of which achieve the correct score. McKernan is certain to be banned for at least two weeks and possibly four for his hit to Brad Sheppard’s face in the sixth minute of the first term. Crows will still fight for finals, says Jacobs “I’m disappointed because he played well tonight,” said Sanderson of the impending loss of a key part of Adelaide’s jigsaw puzzle in attack. “I spoke to him on the phone (after the report) and he said, ‘I’ll put it behind me’ – and he did to play a good game.” Sanderson agreed he had reason to question the AFL umpiring department, but added: “That’s not the reason we lost. We lost from our critical errors, fundamental errors – not umpiring decisions.” Sanderson reserved comment on the score reviews, in particular the last-quarter call on Adelaide midfielder Rory Sloane’s kick in the goalsquare that was touched off the boot. The goal umpire called it this way – and video review confirmed such. Sanderson explained his decision to leave the coach’s box to work from the field bench with six minutes to play – and Adelaide leading by 13 points after Jason Porplyzia had scored the Crows’ ninth and final goal – on wanting to “control the rotations”. “I wanted to talk to the players directly and have more control of the interchange rotations,” said Sanderson. “I wanted to talk to the player face-to-face.” Adelaide midfielder Aidan Riley was taken to hospital last night for scans on a severely injured right ankle. He was subbed out of the game in the first term.
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