AFL live ScoreCentre: Hawthorn vs Gold Coast, GWS vs Essendon, Western Bulldogs vs Fremantle, Geelong vs St Kilda, Port Adelaide vs Richmond live scores, stats and results

The Western Bulldogs and Fremantle are both desperate for a win as the race for top four and finals positions heats up.

Earlier, Hawthorn claimed a hard-fought win over Gold Coast to end the Suns’ slim hopes of making finals.

Later, Geelong took on St Kilda and Port Adelaide hosted Richmond.

Follow the live scores, stats and results below.

Western Bulldogs vs Fremantle

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Hawks hold on to end Suns’ finals hopes

Hawthorn have all but snuffed out Gold Coast’s AFL finals hopes, holding off a final-quarter Suns fightback for a seven-point win in the milestone match of skipper Ben McEvoy.

Veteran Hawk Jack Gunston picked up five goals in Launceston on Saturday afternoon in the 10.10 (70) to 8.15 (63) result in McEvoy’s 250th appearance.

The Hawks claimed a well-earned win in Tasmania.(Getty Images: Dylan Burns)

Despite leading at each change, the Hawks had some nervous moments late with the Gold Coast virtually setting up camp in their half.

Trailing by 17 at three-quarter time, the Suns kicked the opening two goals of the fourth term and got within a goal with about five minutes left on the clock.

The Gold Coast were left to rue several muffed opportunities in the final quarter, with big man Mabior Chol and rookie Mac Andrew missing gettable set shots.

McEvoy picked up a crucial mark in defense inside the final two minutes as the Hawks scrambled for their eighth win of the year despite scoring just one point in the last term.

The result leaves the Suns in 11th position on the ladder, two wins outside the top eight with two rounds remaining and a host of teams above them still to play in round 21.

Gunston was on fire early, picking up four of his five goals before half-time.

The Suns were slow out of the blocks and took until the 21st minute to register their opening major but trailed by just eight at the first break.

Hawthorn pulled ahead in the second term with three goals straight, including Gunston’s third which was shortly followed by a fourth on the run, for a 21-point half-time lead.

Hawthorn’s Jarman Impey was put on report in the third quarter for contact on Darcy Macpherson after he kicked the ball following a mark.

Despite having the breeze at their back in the all-important third term, the Suns could only equal Hawthorn’s two goals.

Suns’ livewire small forward Izak Rankine picked up 11 disposals amid reports the Adelaide Crows have offered the 22-year-old a $4 million deal over five years.

Giants finish stronger to beat Bombers

GWS have responded to a week of intense focus and strong internal criticism with a rousing 27-point AFL triumph over Essendon at Giants Stadium.

The fired-up Giants were looking to bounce back after an insipid performance last week but were unable to shake off the Bombers until slamming on seven consecutive second-half goals to set up a 14.12 (96) to 10.9 (69) victory on Saturday.

Jake Stringer grits his teeth while a number of GWS players surround him and grab at him
The Giants came out on top of the scrap against the Bombers.(Getty Images: Brendon Thorne)

The Bombers (7-13) came into the clash having won four of their past five matches but had little answer to the Giants’ improved effort after briefly claiming the lead with two majors just after the main change, only kicking one consolation goal from there .

Jesse Hogan (four goals, 12 marks) set the tone with his intensity as he collected three tackles inside 50 as the Giants dominated that count 16-1, while the key forward was also his usual threat around goal and in the air.

Giants co-captains Stephen Coniglio (20 disposals, one goal) and Josh Kelly (19, one) led from the front in the midfield, while Lachie Whitfield (30, one) was one of the best afield and did plenty of damage with his sharp foot skills.

Harry Perryman (23 touches) was one of the few Giants praised by their coach last week and backed it up with a crucial role keeping Zach Merrett in check.

The Bombers’ star midfielder gathered 19 disposals but his influence on the contest and especially around the stoppages was down on his usual output.

Toby Greene (two goals) looked dangerous throughout but young forward James Peatling had to be subbed out in the second term after he chose to bump rather than tackle Mason Redman and they clashed heads.

Darcy Parish was straight back to his prolific ball-winning best after a month out with a calf injury, collecting 28 disposals and seven clearances and Sam Durham collected 23 touches.

Bombers spearhead Peter Wright had an enthralling duel with the Giants gun defender Sam Taylor but made the most of his chances with two goals, while Matt Guelfi slotted four goals from just six kicks.

The Giants looked eager to make an early impact after coach Mark McVeigh’s scathing post-match criticisms last week, with spot fires breaking out around the ground as both teams lined up for the opening bounce.

When play finally started, Stephen Coniglio rushed forward and snapped a goal after 47 seconds, and after Jake Stringer knocked Harry Himmelberg over before the ball had gone back to the middle the Giants had two goals in as many minutes.

The Giants’ victory snapped a four-match losing streak and lifts them to a 6-14 record and within reach of avoiding their first bottom-four finish since 2014.

GWS will be on the road next week to face arch-rivals Western Bulldogs on Saturday, while Essendon are at home to Port Adelaide on Sunday.

Geelong vs St Kilda

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Port Adelaide vs Richmond

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