Wayward Saints are in a hole: AFL coach

Jason Phelan

Frustrated St Kilda coach Alan Richardson concedes the Saints are in a hole after Melbourne consigned them to their fifth loss of the AFL season.

Richardson's side are 16th with one win, five losses and a draw after round seven AFL action that ended with Richmond sitting in top spot for the third round running.

The Saints trailed by just 16 points early in the third quarter, but were left to rue yet another wayward effort in front of goal in the 16.10 (106) to 9.13 (67) defeat at Etihad Stadium on Sunday.

"I get incredibly frustrated for us ... I get frustrated for the players," Richardson said.

"You're just not going to beat good teams ... unless you can take advantage of your opportunities.

"It's pretty clear we're in a hole - a win-loss hole, a 'making the most of our opportunities' hole.

"Our overall footy is in a hole ... I'm really looking forward to seeing who stands up."

The Tigers (6-1) remain on top of the ladder after they destroyed Fremantle 15.20 (110) to 4.9 (33) at the MCG on Sunday.

Nat Fyfe starred for the Dockers with 26 contested possessions, 12 clearances, six contested marks and seven hitouts in a stellar 33-possession display.

Collingwood (4-3) are knocking on the door of the top eight in ninth after they survived a spirited challenge from winless Brisbane to record a thrilling 19.7 (121) to 18.6 (114) win at the Gabba.

West Coast (6-1) are second after they disposed of Port Adelaide by 42 points on Saturday.

The Eagles lost star onballer Luke Shuey to a hamstring injury just two minutes into the clash, but still cruised to a 16.6 (102) to 9.6 (60) win in front of 50,516 fans at Optus Stadium.

Adelaide (5-2) are third after they scored a 19.11 (125) to 10.10 (70) win over Carlton at Adelaide Oval on Saturday night.

Wayne Milera will undergo scans to determine whether he is the eighth Crow to suffer a hamstring injury this season.

Hawthorn (5-2) round out the top four after they saw off Essendon by 23 points at the MCG on Saturday.

The Bombers remain the only team not to win a third quarter this year after the Hawks beat them 13.12 (90) to 10.7 (67) in a scrappy affair.

North Melbourne (4-3) pulled off the upset of the round when they recorded a 9.14 (68) to 9.12 (66) win over Sydney at the SCG.

Mason Wood kicked a career-high four goals, giving the Roos the lead in the dying stages with his brilliant fourth major.

The Western Bulldogs (3-4) trailed at three-quarter time in Ballarat on Saturday but outlasted Gold Coast in the final term to secure an 11.15 (81) to 10.12 (72) victory.

Geelong (4-3) never really hit top gear at Kardinia Park on Friday night, but were far too good for the disappointing Greater Western Sydney, cruising to a 14.9 (93) to 4.8 (32) win.

Tom Hawkins will front the AFL tribunal after he made contact with an umpire after he clattered into Nick Haynes in the second quarter.