Jarryd Roughead has booted six goals for Hawthorn who have farewelled their retiring AFL champion in fine style with a 70-point smashing of hapless Gold Coast in a carnival atmosphere at Marvel Stadium.
With former premiership teammates Luke Hodge, Jordan Lewis and Lance Franklin in attendance, 31,331 fans wildly applauded Roughead’s every move in Sunday’s emotion-charged 18.10 (118) to 7.6 (48) win.
But while it was almost certainly Roughead’s swan song in Melbourne, the four- time premiership star contributed well enough to suggest he might keep his spot for the round-23 clash with West Coast.
While the focus was fairly and squarely on Roughead, the Hawks quietly moved into ninth spot with the percentage-boosting win – a fifth victory in their past seven games.
Depending on other results, Alastair Clarkson’s men might come from the clouds to snatch a surprise finals berth with an upset win over the Eagles at Optus Stadium.
James Worpel continued his outstanding season with 34 possessions and two goals, with Tom Scully (26 touches and two goals) and Isaac Smith (24 disposals and a goal) also prominent, but it was all about one man.
The crowd erupted when Roughead coolly slotted a set shot from 50m after a strong mark on the lead seven minutes in, the veteran proudly grabbing his guernsey as he was mobbed by his teammates.
The 32-year-old sharked a pack at pace to slot his second from close range to push his side’s lead out to 30 points at the first break.
The Hawthorn faithful broke into a round of applause on the two-minute mark of the second quarter as a mark of respect for the retiring No.2.
Roughead was unable to maintain his early pace but there were plenty of other contributors as the Hawks continued to dismantle the Suns.
The margin was 50 points at halftime after Jack Gunston’s long point, which came after he received the good-natured boos of the crowd for taking a mark in front of the hard-leading Roughead.
Near-silence greeted Gold Coast’s first two goals of the second half as the upstart visitors deviated from the script, but normal transmission was soon restored.
Roughead took his tally to four majors with set shots from a strong pack mark and a free kick, setting up the 49-point margin at three-quarter time.
The man of the moment booted his fifth after another strong lead was rewarded to start the final term and he almost brought the house down when he swooped on a loose ball to make it six with just over a minute left.
Pearce Hanley (34 possessions) and Touk Miller (30) battled hard for Gold Coast, who slipped to a 17th loss in a row, with their dismal season to end at Metricon Stadium when they host GWS.