St Kilda has scraped over the line by one-point in a seesawing contest against the Gold Coast Suns, getting an important win after a horror off-season.
The open roof at Marvel Stadium paved the way for a fast-paced game of footy, with both sides desperate to get their seasons off to a good start.
The Suns dominated the second half, but the Saints managed to keep themselves in the game with some poise at the right moments, making for a thrilling contest.
The Talking Point: The Marvel Stadium surface
Once again, the surface at the Marvel Stadium troubled the players.
In the second quarter, the emergency umpire had to come onto the ground to pat down the grass after Gold Coast defender Sam Collins dug up the turf after a tackle.
The turf was also dug up in front of the interchange bench, providing a hazard for the players.
The moment: Matthew Parker kicks first AFL goal
Three years after playing suburban football in Perth, Matthew Parker made his debut for the Saints and had a massive impact on the game.
His explosive speed was a highlight and his kicking was just as good, making for an impressive debut.
The 23-year-old ended with two goals and gathered 17 disposals.
Medical room: Ainsworth suffers suspected knee injury, but plays out game
Gold Coast midfielder/ forward Ben Ainsworth suffered what appeared to be a knee injury in the first quarter.
But after being helped off by doctors, he returned in the second quarter and ran out the game.
Although he looked in pain, he managed to kick a goal to get the Suns within six points midway through the third quarter.
The Star: Alex Sexton
Sexton was unstoppable and kept the Suns in the game throughout the afternoon.
He not only booted goals but he gathered plenty of the ball as well.
He ended with four majors and 18 disposals in a dominant performance.
The social moment
Kane Cornes says: “You just can’t have this surface in this day and age”
Even Thor would injure himself on this Marvel Stadium surface. It is atrocious and border line not safe to play on #replacethedivots— Campbell brown (@Browndogg_30x) March 24, 2019
St Kilda take on the Bombers next week at Marvel Stadium, and will carry plenty of confidence going into the game.
Gold Coast have a winnable game against Fremantle on Sunday, and have the home-ground advantage at Metricon Stadium.
St Kilda: 4.1, 9.4, 12.4, 13.7. (85)
Gold Coast: 5.2, 7.3, 10.4, 13.6. (84)
St Kilda: Bruce 3, Membrey 2, Parker 2, Long, Sinclair, Gresham, Steele, Kent, Lonie
Gold Coast: Sexton 4, Swallow 3, Wright 2, Miles, Burgess, Ainsworth, Powell
St Kilda: Billings, Ross, Parker, Steele, Newnes, Steven
Gold Coast: Sexton, Fiorini, Powell, Miles, MacPherson
Injuries: Gold Coast: Ainsworth (knee)