Carlton trounce Gold Coast in AFL

Carlton's ex-captain Marc Murphy has engineered a 33-point thrashing of Gold Coast to put his club on the cusp of the AFL's top eight.

Murphy was a standout with a game-high 28 disposals in the Blues' 7.18 (60) to 4.3 (27) triumph on Friday night in Darwin.

The victory lifts Carlton to ninth on the ladder ahead of weekend games, just behind eighth-placed Melbourne on percentage.

Murphy, skipper Patrick Cripps (22 touches, seven clearances), Jack Newnes (23 disposals, one goal) and Jack Martin (21 possessions) were midfield forces.

Teammates Harry McKay and Michael Gibbons, with two goals each, were attacking threats while Jacob Weitering and Liam Jones marshalled a miserly backline.

"Our balance around the contest was strong, which allowed us to really compete," Carlton coach David Teague said.

"Probably we didn't finish our work in front of goal ... but overall I was really happy with the balance of using the ball or getting it forward under pressure."

The Suns were playing their fourth match in 15 days - the Darwin fixture came after consecutive four-day breaks - and the gruelling schedule took its toll.

Their total was their third-lowest ever with Jack Lukosius (22 touches) and Jack Bowes (20 touches) their chief ball-winners.

The Blues dominated the opening term without fully capitalising on the scoreboard, kicking 1.3 to nothing.

The goal came on the run from 40 metres from Gibbons while teammates Murphy (nine disposals) and Cripps (seven touches, three clearances) set an early tone.

Carlton's command continued in the second stanza, with McKay converting a set shot to extend the lead to 17-0.

"We were really flat at the start," Suns coach Stuart Dew said.

"We have got to find a way when things aren't going well or when the opposition is playing well, how can we arrest momentum?

"We were unable to do that."

Gold Coast finally hit the scoreboard in the 11th minute of the quarter when Izak Rankine goaled and Sean Lemmens added another seven minutes later to reduce the deficit to seven points.

But the Blues brutally quelled the threat with three goals in a four-minute flurry.

Crowd favourite Eddie Betts triggered the spree after Zac Fisher sprinted from 55m, took three bounces along the boundary line and dished off to Betts in the goal square.

McKay soon slotted his second major before Gibbons found time and created space some 25m out to curve through a left-footed snap.

The blitz gave Carlton a 25-point advantage at halftime - 5.7 to 2.0 - and the damage was done.

The teams scrapped a goal each in the third term before both mustered one more goal apiece in the final quarter.