FROM 0-3 to third spot on the ladder before the end of Autumn. 

Collingwood might not end the first weekend of Sir Doug Nicholls Round inside the top four, but the Magpies have won yet another single digit game to defeat Kuwarna by four points in a thriller at the MCG on Saturday afternoon. 

And it came down to a composed set shot goal deep in red time from Jordan De Goey after Nick Daicos found the Magpies star on the lead at the city end to help secure the 12.6 (78) to 11.8 (74) win. 

The Magpies have now beaten the Crows by less than a goal in their past four encounters – and five of their past six games – to extend their winning streak to nine games against Adelaide and make it seven games without a loss after a shaky start to their premiership defence. 

Although, Izak Rankine nearly won the game off his own boot with a stunning NAB Goal of the Year contender. 

In a fortnight where the game stops to pay tribute to the contribution made by First Nations people, Kuwarna's Indigenous star put the Crows back in front late with a brilliant dribble kick from the boundary, then burst down the wing in the dying seconds to put his side back inside 50 only to be called for running too far. 

Rankine couldn't have done much more, finishing with a career-high 30 disposals, seven clearances, 692m gained, before limping off after the final siren with a suspected hamstring injury. 

Nick Daicos was enormous from the first bounce, reaching quarter-time with 15 disposals and six clearances to his name, before finishing with 40 disposals, 22 contested possessions, a career-high 14 clearances and six tackles in another masterclass.

Kuwarna has recovered from 0-4 to still be in contention, but it should be returning to South Australia with a major scalp after being the better side for much of the game, but wasting a plus-nine inside-50 count. 

At the start of game No.393, Scott Pendlebury showed his class early, linking up with De Goey in the corridor to bank the first goal of the game.

But despite dominating proceedings, the Crows steadied on the back of the influence of Jake Soligo.

Taylor Walker slotted the Crows' first, before Brayden Cook made Collingwood pay for repeat turnovers. Then Pendlebury, the 36-year-old evergreen champion, read the play perfectly off the hand of Mason Cox to slot his second in time-on. 

Joe Richards and Bobby Hill kept the foot on the throat by kicking the first two goals in the first two minutes of the second quarter.


Lachie Schultz and Reef McInnes added two more, before Elliott Himmelberg ended a run of six consecutive Collingwood goals.

Fogarty and Rachele kicked two more majors in red time to reduce the margin to under two goals before the main break.

After a quiet start, Jordan Dawson was crucial in the second quarter, helping swing the momentum back. 

Will Hoskin-Elliott didn't emerge after half-time due to a hamstring injury, rearranging a forward line that was already without Brody Mihocek, Jamie Elliott and Beau McCreery for a second consecutive week, after losing Jeremy Howe early last Sunday.

McInnes exited 15 minutes later due to concussion.

Amid an arm wrestle, where the Crows kept responding and wouldn't allow the reigning premiers to put a buffer in the game, Noble streamed through the centre and launched a bomb from beyond the arc for a moment to savour in his milestone game. 

But the Crows responded again. Rachele kicked the first goal of the last quarter, before Mitch Hinge ran around the back of Walker and launched a kick from 55m out that went over the back fence and reduced the margin to one straight kick. 

Adelaide almost got there in the end, but they didn't. The masters of the tight finish did it again.

COLLINGWOOD     4.2     8.2     11.4    12.6 (78)
ADELAIDE              3.1     6.3     8.5     11.8 (74)

Collingwood: Pendlebury 2, McInnes 2, De Goey 2, Schultz, Richards, Noble, Hill, Hoskin-Elliott, Crisp, 
Kuwarna: Rachele 2, Fogarty 2, Walker, Sholl, Murphy, Himmelberg, Cook, Rankine, Himmelberg

Collingwood: Hoskin-Elliott (hamstring), McInnes (concussion)
Kuwarna: Rankine (hamstring)

Collingwood: Harvey Harrison (replaced Will Hoskin-Elliott in the second quarter)
Kuwarna: Ned McHenry (replaced Lachlan Sholl in the third quarter)

Crowd: 63,935 at the MCG