The Gabba was plunged into acheronian by a powerfulness outage that halted play for astir 40 minutes to hold – and astir thwart – Brisbane’s march to a 11-point triumph implicit Melbourne.
The Lions were starring by 40 points with astir 12 minutes remaining successful the last word connected Friday nighttime erstwhile the lights went out.
A lone bulb caught occurrence successful a operation but powerfulness was restored and play resumed earlier the 60-minute chopped disconnected that would person handed Brisbane victory.
The hosts prevailed 14.9 (93) to 13.4 (82) – and with a large suspiration of alleviation aft conceding 5 unanswered goals erstwhile play resumed.
“What a night, seriously,” Brisbane manager Chris Fagan said, earlier jokingly requesting not to beryllium asked astir the last 13 minutes.
“We played truthful good for three-and-a-half quarters … we had them connected the ropes.
“There’s thing to suffer for the squad that’s down successful that concern so, psychologically, that was an vantage to them and they did it well.”
In eerie scenes, the players had stood connected the crushed for respective minutes earlier heading wrong arsenic powerfulness dilatory returned to the ground.
They reappeared astir 30 minutes aboriginal to lukewarm up and were abruptly backmost nether way.
It was a confusing series of events but not the archetypal clip it’s happened astatine the Gabba, with a Big Bash League fixture successful 2019 ended aboriginal by a powerfulness outage.
In 1996, disgruntled fans lit fires connected the aboveground and successful the stands of Waverley Park erstwhile a blackout forced St Kilda and Essendon’s clash to beryllium completed a week later. Three years later, the MCG scoreboard caught fire.
There were calmer scenes astatine the Gabba, though, arsenic 30,047 cheery fans broke into opus waiting for a resumption.
Earlier, the Lions, inactive smarting aft a first-round hiding from Port Adelaide, changeable retired of the gates with six first-quarter goals portion Demons prima Max Gawn near the crippled with a genu injury.
The ruckman chopped a devastated fig connected the sideline and volition hold connected scans, hopeful of nary semipermanent injury.
Steven May was ruled retired of his calf wounded instrumentality earlier the bounce and the Lions went successful for the kill, Melbourne’s second-quarter absorption blown isolated with 2 aboriginal third-quarter goals that looked to person sealed a triumph for Fagan’s side.
Brisbane upset the Demons successful past year’s semi-final and Fagan was keen to amusement it was nary “fluke”, particularly aft their slack Adelaide Oval effort past Saturday.
Playing astatine half-forward, Dayne Zorko (22 touches, 2 goals, 8 wrong 50s, 4 tackles) showed however important helium remains to Brisbane aft missing circular one, portion Cam Rayner was electrical successful defence and Will Ashcroft (31 touches) a midfield jewel successful his 2nd AFL game.
Rayner, Lachie Neale and Josh Dunkley helped Brisbane stroke the Demons isolated successful the clearances, winning 60-32 and collecting 26 betwixt them.
Early unit from Jarrod Berry helped restrict Clayton Oliver to 1 first-half clearance, but the Demons prima inactive finished with 37 disposals.
Ben Brown (four goals) and Bailey Fritsch took their chances to get the Demons backmost wrong 20 points successful the 2nd quarter, but speedy Charlie Cameron and Joe Daniher goals to statesman the 2nd fractional snuffed them out.
Teams went goal-for-goal aboriginal but the Lions exploded precocious successful the archetypal quarter, notching 14-straight wrong 50s.
With the forlorn Gawn icing his genu successful the dressing room, Zorko, Ashcroft, Oscar McInerney and Daniher (four goals) each deed the scoreboard to make an aboriginal 25-point lead.
“I emotion the volition and the combat successful our team,” Demons manager Simon Goodwin said.
“There’s a batch to instrumentality retired of that past 12 minutes … but Brisbane bushed america successful a fewer areas that are truly captious to the game.”