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Who produced the best quarter in week one of finals?

Dinny Navaratnam, AFL.com.au  September 12, 2017 10:00 AM

Milestone man bags two early goals Jack Darling has started on fire with two early goals
AFL 2017 First Elimination Final - Port Adelaide v West Coast

Jack Darling booted the first two goals of the game at the Adelaide Oval

Finals are made for the big-time players. The stars who thrive when it counts the most, and can change the game in just a quarter.

An analysis of the Schick AFL Player Ratings has shown who was the best performer in each term last weekend.

West Coast travelled to South Australia to pull off a stunning upset against Port Adelaide last Saturday night and a pair of forwards had a huge impact.

The Eagles went into the first break with a 20-point advantage, thanks in large part to a stellar start from Jack Darling.

Often maligned since a day to forget against Hawthorn in the 2015 Grand Final, Darling went some way to redeeming his reputation, taking a couple of contested marks and slotting two straight goals in the opening term for 10.5 Player Ratings points.

Then after scores were level at what was supposed to be the final siren, dual Coleman medallist Josh Kennedy broke loose from Tom Clurey's clutches in extra time to boot two of his side's three goals, scoring 7.3 Player Ratings points in that 10-minute period.

Meanwhile, Lance Franklin ran rampant as Sydney pounded Essendon by 65 points at the SCG last Saturday.

He copped a corkie in the first quarter but responded by notching up 14.3 Player Ratings points in the second. For context, that would equate to 57.2 points over a whole game, better than the all-time record of 50.5 points he set for his 13-goal effort against North Melbourne in 2012.

Franklin nailed four straight goals in a special display against the team he has tormented more than any other.

As for matches being torn apart, perhaps the best example came last Friday night. With Richmond on top in general play all night but only ahead by 13 points, it needed a lift from somewhere to snuff out Geelong's chances.

After everything Dustin Martin has done in what has been a phenomenal season, there was no surprise he was the man once again.

Racking up 10 disposals at 100 per cent efficiency, four score assists and 13.4 Player Ratings points, Martin dominated the last term to spark a 51-point victory, helping Richmond into its first preliminary final since 2001.

Greater Western Sydney might have been thumped by Adelaide after a terrible second term but it's no surprise Toby Greene was one of the few Giants to stand up, picking up six disposals, four contested possessions, two contested marks and a goal in the third quarter for 10 Player Ratings points

Player Ratings leaders by quarter

Best first quarter: Jack Darling (West Coast) – 10.5
Best second quarter: Lance Franklin (Sydney) – 14.3
Best third quarter: Toby Greene (Greater Western Sydney) – 10
Best fourth quarter: Dustin Martin (Richmond) – 13.4
Best in extra time: Josh Kennedy (West Coast) – 7.3