Category - 2011 – Round 20
A review at all eight games from an AFL Dream Team and SuperCoach perspective, running through all the heroes and villains of each game.
St.Kilda vs Fremantle:
- Justin Koschitzke played one of his best games for the Saints in nearly two years, roaming all over the ground as a ruckman-cum-forward. He commented in an interview a fortnight ago that he has lost a fair bit of weight this year to allow him to improve his mobility around the ground, and it was certainly on display tonight. He worked hard up the ground to create contests, picking up 17 touches and 9 marks and was actually the Saints’ most effective tall when he dropped forward, booting 2 goals. It’s great to see the big guy hitting some form at this end of the season, but I should note, this does not make him a great DT or SC option, as we all know how inconsistent he has been over his career.
- Sam Fisher started the game in the midfield on Pavlich and followed him around for all four quarters, doing a very good job at beating Pav one-on-one. Pavlich really struggled to know where to play as Fisher is equally bullocking in the midfield, was clearly strong in the backline when Pavlich went forward and even managed to kick a goal of his own when Pav tried playing around the backline. He finished the game with 24 touches and 8 marks. Fisher is still awfully cheap for the scoring he can produce and plays a number of teams he averages high numbers against in the run home. If you still need another defender, he could be your man.
- Jason Gram is another Saint starting to hit some good form – his past few weeks has seen him get a much more productive role off half-back, often playing on a dangerous small forward and rebounding hard – similar to the role which Gilbert has played over the past couple of years. He played on Nat Fyfe and did a real number on him, keeping him to 20 touches whilst picking up 24 touches and 5 marks of his own – he also kicked a very nice goal on the run from outside-50 – a clear sign he has his confidence back, as this is a feature of his game we haven’t seen for a couple of months. He could be a decent unique option for the run home if you aren’t already loaded up on Saints.
- Brendon Goddard had a pretty quiet game as Fremantle played him very well. Goddard went head-to-head with Mayne for the first half of the game, so Freo spent significant time trying to tighten BJ up by continually playing through Mayne whenever they went forward, and it proved very effective, significantly limiting Goddard’s influence on the game. Fortunately Ross Lyon moved Goddard into the guts and even up forward for stints in the second half, but he still wasn’t only at his dominant best, picking up just 18 touches, 2 marks and 3 tackles for the game.
- Tendai Mzungu played some sort of game, going head-to-head with Dan Santo and really troubled him with his height, leap and speed. He was Freo’s most consistent four-quarter performer and will likely get his first couple of Brownlow votes from this game. He followed Dal everywhere – typically through the middle – and worked off him really well, winning plenty of his own ball and always using it very well. It looked like a real ‘making of’ game for him and is hopefully a sign of form to come for the remaining four games of the year. He finished with 30 touches, 5 marks and 5 tackles.
- Zach Clarke was another young Docker to impress me – he went into the game as the club’s sole ruckman, with both Sandilands and Griffin both out injured. He competed very well against Kosi and McEvoy, and whilst he probably didn’t come out on top, his work around the ground was still very good, picking up 15 touches, 5 marks and 5 tackles. He still has a pretty slight build, but doesn’t struggle to pull down a contested mark – something which caused concern for the Saints, who typically like to use McEvoy when coming out of defence. After a few years in the system it is great to see him showing some real promise – it will now be interesting to see what they decide to do with him once Sandi and Griffin return.
- Chris Mayne, as I touched on earlier, was used frequently as a hit-up target in the forward line, as a way of making Goddard accountable. He was very prevalent in the first half, in fact, we saw so much of him that my girlfriend queried, “Do they just have one guy with the stupid blonde hair in their team, or is he just getting a lot of it?” Sums it up nicely I think. He really was everywhere, but when Goddard shifted into the midfield in the second half (and Mayne attempted to follow him, to no avail), Mayne went pretty quiet as he had a true defender playing on him. He finished with 16 possessions and 2.1 for the game.
- Greg Broughton had one of his quieter games for a while, going head-to-head with Armitage on a half-back flank. Clearly, this is not the position that his coaches want him to play, but judging from this game it seems it is a match-up thing. All of Mayne, Lower and Mzungu spent significant time in the midfield, causing Broughton to be the man pushed out. He had a very limited effect on the game and subsequently had his lowest score in a month and half of football, subsequently driving his price down for those in need of a defensive upgrade through DT and SC finals. Fingers would have to be crossed though that he continues his role through the midfield in coming weeks.
Geelong vs Gold Coast:
- Steve Johnson unsurprisingly had a day out as Gold Coast rotated a number of inexperienced defenders on him throughout the game. He finished with 6 goals, but seemed to be attempting to surpass his 11 score assists which he managed last week against the Dees, flicking the ball around the forward line to try and find someone in a better position. Unfortunately though, he did get a bit sloppy and a bit showy at times with his disposal, sometimes leading to unnecessary turnovers later in the game. It didn’t stop him getting the ball though as he worked pretty hard up the ground and through the forward line to get his disposals, finishing with 31 touches and 7 marks for the game.
- Paul Chapman was really good for the Cats, and was the one who showed the best leadership in the third term as they begun to play some sloppy footy, too busy trying to show off rather than stay to their structures. He was a strong worker through the middle through all four-quarters and finally got his own reward on the scoreboard with two late goals – deserved after he’d set up so many throughout the game. He finished with 30 touches, 6 marks and 6 tackles and was definitely one of their best couple.
- Joel Selwood was another Cats’ midfielder to work hard all day and reap the benefits, finishing the game with 33 touches, 6 marks and 3 goals. Both his inside and outside games were on show, and it continues to amaze me how he continues to go so hard for the ball, despite his side being up by well over 100 points. This game clearly marks another day-out at the Cattery for Selwood, a venue where he averages around 130 DT points a game, which quiet frankly, is ridiculous.
- Tom Hawkins impressed me today, albeit against some reasonably inexperienced players, with Rory Thompson playing on him for the majority of the game. His contested marking is a real feature, as is his ability to find space both in the forward-50 or around the flanks. Unfortunately, whilst he appears to have a football brain capable of knowing where to run, he still seems to struggle with choosing the best option to kick to – or perhaps his disposal is just awful. Anyway, he has shown some good form over the past month, and is starting to show signs that suggest he could be a very good player after all.
- Nathan Bock again had a very solid game, doing his best to steady the young Gold Coast defence in a game that saw an AFL record number of inside-50s. He spent the majority of the game playing on Podsiadly, although was given Johnson for a while in the second quarter. He doesn’t do as much rebounding work for the Suns as he used to do for Adelaide, although as the mature head, they do give him as much of the ball as possible, hence his high number of disposals and marks – 27 touches and 7 marks. The next four weeks see a slightly easier run for the Suns (barring Hawthorn in round 24), so players like Bock mightn’t be such a bad option for your defence – especially in SuperCoach – if you are after someone a bit more unique.
- Danny Stanley started very well, booting a great goal on the run in the first quarter, then the Suns’ first in the third term. He played predominantly across a forward flank, with time through the middle, and was used frequently by his teammates thanks to his high workrate and mature body. Unfortunately, when Scarlett was subbed off and Lonergan on, it caused a restructure in the Cats defence, which in turn matched Stanley up on the much taller Lonergan. Due to the fact 90% of the Suns’ forward entries were high bombs, Stanley just couldn’t get near it before Lonergan spoiled the ball away. This lead to just one disposal for Stanley in the final term – a disappointment considering his great start.
- Jeremy Taylor played his second game and was again pretty impressive, giving a little more than just a spoil – he runs and chases and tries to provide a decent option off half-back. He started the game of Johnson, but was quickly moved onto Mooney after Johnson kicked two very quick goals on him to start the match. Fortunately, he didn’t let that get him down and he worked pretty hard to keep Moons 3 goals – a reasonable effort considering the Cats kicked 29 goals in total. He is on the bubble this week and looks one of the better defence options if you are in need of some cash.
- Zac Smith continues to look more and more tired every week, hardly featuring in this game at all as Fraser spent the majority of time on the ball. He did some nice things in the ruck, getting 17 hitouts, but struggled to impact around the ground or up forward, only managing 8 disposals, zero marks and 1 tackle. Those counting on him as their second ruck may want to think again – perhaps it is worth taking Dan’s advice and bringing in the in-form Shane Mumford.
Carlton vs Melbourne:
- Chris Judd was again best on ground for the Blues, significantly lifting in a mammoth 2nd term to pull his side along for a massive lead going into half time. His match was highlighted by an awesome forward-50 tackle on Trengove – as Trengove attempted to sidestep around Judd when running out of defence, Judd grabbed him like a bear to drag him to ground and subsequently win the free and kick the goal. The Blues lifted their own intensity and Melbourne didn’t have a chance from then on. He finished with 31 disposals, 18 of which were contested (a game high), 8 clearances and 11 inside-50s – both also game highs. Those doubting him for the Brownlow are simply kidding themselves.
- Bryce Gibbs had another great game, roving around the ground in a plethora of positions. He went head to head with Moloney for a while, dropped forward for 2.1 and was even seen streaking out of defence on occasions. His form over the past month has been terrific, with Rattan now happy and willing to play him in ball-winning positions – something that hasn’t always been the case across his short career. He finished off the game with 27 touches and 6 marks, although disappointingly didn’t lay a tackle.
- Heath Scotland is another Blue whose past month has been fantastic. He was the only man on the ground to rack up more touches than his skipper, disposing of the ball 32 times, whilst also racking up 12 marks and 2 goals. He plays the role of outside receiver for the Blues, continually waiting outside the packs to be fed the ball before throwing it onto his deadly accurate boot. He is clearly a player the Blues want to have the ball, giving it to him on every possible occasion – he also works hard across the ground to get to each contest, also spending time in the defensive 50 to help them rebound. His only foreseeable issue is that pesky round 23 bye.
- Robbie Warnock was solid for the Blues, coming up against a Jamar-less Melbourne ruck division. We have talked recently (on this week’s TV show) about in-form ruckmen and Warnock is a great example, averaging 86 DT and 98 SC points from his past five games. He seems to have taken a while to find his feet at Carlton, thanks to a mixture of injuries and form issues, but they certainly look to be getting the best out of him this year as he has led their ruck division since round one. He is great in the air, winning plenty of hitouts thanks to his size (208cm), but also solid around the ground, making him both a decent DT and SC option. He finished this game with 11 touches, 2 tackles, 36 hitouts and a goal.
- Jack Watts was Melbourne’s best, still being swung between forward and back, although in a post-game interview, Viney stated that he will look to play Watts forward more often, as this is where he seems most comfortable. Unfortunately, this isn’t where he looks best for Dream Team or SuperCoach – he has been winning a lot of ball from half-back lately, so a permanent move forward should see his scoring decrease – beware! He finished off the game with 21 disposals, 9 marks and 2.1.
- Lynden Dunn has always been a played I’ve liked, although he has never been the type to consider for DT or SC, unfortunately. He played a negating forward role (as he has for most of his games this year), sitting on Yarran until he was subbed off in the third term. From there he had a mixture of opponents, but wasn’t nearly as effective, with his own form fading late in the game too. He finished off with 13 touches, 7 tackles and 2.2.
- Brad Green again had a disappointing game – he is in an awful form slump at the moment and it is being inflated due to the fact he is the skipper. Again, he played out of the square, only venturing into the midfield for bursts, despite Melbourne’s obvious need for a bigger body in the clearances. Without meaning to foray into the politics of football, surely, after sacking Bailey last week, Melbourne needs to have a good look at whether Green is the best Captain option for the club – he has shown very little on-field leadership throughout this terrible period for the club. I bet they wish they hadn’t sacked Junior McDonald now… Green finished with just 9 disposals, 3 marks and 1.2.
- Injuries were a massive worry for Melbourne too, although they didn’t play a massive factor in the loss. Tragically (and graphically), Jamie Strauss broke both the tibia and fibula in his leg, right above the ankle, in a car-crash like injury. Luke Tapscott was another to be carted off to hospital when he copped Martin’s hip to his head in the last quarter – he was carried off complaining of neck pain and tingling in his arm and will now likely miss a chunk of football. Both terrible looking injuries and we hope both make speedy recoveries!
Essendon vs Sydney:
- Paddy Ryder played one of his best games for the year and looks to have finally gotten some confidence back into his game. He was Essendon’s main ruckman for the night, whilst David Hille was kept up forward for the majority of the game. He did a pretty decent job against Mumford in the ruck, winning the hitouts – although it was his hitouts to advantage that was most impressive – whilst he also competed very well around the ground, picking up 20 touches and 8 marks, along with his 31 hitouts. He took some huge marks in the final term too, which really showed he finally had some confidence in himself again.
- Jobe Watson was as solid as usual through the middle, competing hard against Sydney’s plethora of in-and-under midfielders. He had 31 disposals, 20 of which were contested, as well as a game-high 12 clearances. As is expected of Jobe, he worked hard through the middle without doing anything too flashy – he was definitely one of their hardest workers, setting up so many of his teammates to run and carry the ball down the wing. He also laid 8 tackles and had 5 inside-50s for the game.
- Dyson Heppell was great again, switching between a number of Sydney’s forwards, including O’Keefe and Jetta. He rebounds really well and Essendon use him as much as possible when coming out of defence, thanks to his sure hands and accurate boot. He also showed some courage later in the game when he went back with the flight of the ball in the forward line, getting crunched by an opponent. Unfortunately he missed the goal, but it was still a great mark. My only query on him is his fitness, as for the second week in a row he has managed just one disposal in the last quarter.
- Kyle Hardingham impressed me in bursts – he’s not really any sort of DT or SC player, but showed some good attacking flair in the backline on occasions. In one passage he dodged and weaved around about five Swans, amazingly not getting caught and managing to hit his target with the kick. The Dons have a pretty exciting young backline emerging, with any of them seemingly happy to rebound from defence. David Myers had one of his better games too, whilst Dustin Fletcher moved like he was still only 21 years old – geez he was good!
- Adam Goodes played one of the most polarising games in recent memory, where he managed to be both the hero and villain for the Swans on many occasions – not just with the last kick of the day. He seemed unstoppable around the ground, seeming to play about 50% in the forward line and 50% through the midfield. He beat all of his opponents and took a number of great marks across the ground, also working hard to win the contested ball and clearances. What let him down was his goal-kicking and some brain-fades – on two separate occasions he missed the goals when running into the forward line with no one around him – he could have run another 20 metres, but both times decided to shoot from 40m out instead, scoring just a point on both occasions. And then later in the game he punched a ball over the goal-line from a bounce, gifting Essendon a free kick and a goal. The missed shot at goal from after the siren was the least of his worries – it was all these other instances that let him down most. He still finished with 29 touches, 6 marks, 5 tackles and 3.4, but will unfortunately be remembered for all the blunders.
- Daniel Hannebery was great through all four quarters, but would have been in for a gruelling recovery session on Sunday, thanks to the beating his body caused through the game. He came off second-best in a couple of clashes, including one where he was cleaned up by Hurley, doing a full summersault in the air before landing on his head. Despite this he battled on, picking up 24 touches, 7 marks and 4 tackles, as well as being part of some very important plays in the forward-line, sending the ball inside-50 on 6 occasions.
- Sam Reid was damn impressive up forward, with his strong marking a highlight, clunking 5 big grabs for the game. He started the game really well for the Swans, booting their first goal and continually providing a strong option for them at CHF. He is still just developing, but it is already easy to tell that he is full of talent. He faded a little in the second and third terms, but came back to life when the game was on the edge, booting 2 more goals in quick succession to get the Swans back in front.
- Ben McGlynn is a real favourite of mine, but is just too wildly inconsistent now to consider him for Dream Team or SuperCoach. There was a time when he looked like he could be a DT/SC gem, except that injuries were preventing him from any sort of consistency, but this year he has managed to string a number of games together, only to show he is like any other small forward – inconsistent. He still finds space well and kicks the odd goal (kicked one of the best goals of the year in this game, IMO), but just doesn’t rack up the disposals as we would hope. Finished with 11 touches, 3 tackles and 1.1.
Port Adelaide vs Collingwood:
- Travis Boak was the best for Port, picking up 31 disposals and 4 tackles for the night. Understandably, despite him being Port’s best, Collingwood didn’t bother to send a man to him to slow him down – why would they? As well as being the disposal leader for Port, he also led them in many other categories too, with 8 clearances and 8 inside-50s. He also shared an team-high ONE score-assist…
- Mitch Banner made a case to the coach for a permanent spot in the team, after having spent so much of the year dominating in the SANFL. He kicked 2 of their 3 goals and won 21 disposals, albeit the majority of them were uncontested. Since being drafted, we have known Banner to be a great ball-winner, so it would be good to see him get a chance to show his wares at senior level, although the knock on him has always been his disposal efficiency, which in honest, wasn’t any better or worse than any of his teammates tonight. At least he shows endeavour.
- Matthew Lobbe competed well in the ruck, despite being up against both Darren Jolly and Cameron Wood – it was also unfavourable conditions for a big man, with the game being played in the wet. I noted last week that he was appearing to slow down, so it was good to see him run out this game OK, picking up 14 touches and 27 hitouts for the game.
- Chad Cornes played his final game for Port, amazingly fighting off the temptation to box on with any Collingwood player that got near him. Chadly, you will be missed as a Dream Teamer – you were my first picked for so many years, and despite our tumultuous relationship (I take back all the names I called you when injured or suspended), I will always have a place for you in my Dream Team – consider yourself welcome back at the club any time. You will be missed, dear friend.
- Dane Swan (my #1 captain option for the week), enjoyed a lazy day out down at AAMI stadium, picking up 37 possessions, 5 marks, 6 tackles and 3.1. He managed to escape any resemblance of an opponent from Port Adelaide, despite the fact it looked like Kane Cornes was lining up on him at the first bounce (fortunately he moved on to Pendlebury). This obviously meant that Dane was able to do as he pleased, and he did, working hard in the clearances (winning a game-high 9), as well as providing some great run and carry down the wings, as he does so well. His current form is brilliant, so fingers crossed he can be the perma-captain we wish for on the run home through finals.
- Dayne Beams played one of his best games for the club, kicking a goal and setting up 2 more within the first 3 minutes of the game. As it became apparent that Collingwood were going to steamroll Port, Malthouse handed more responsibility to his younger players, allowing them more responsibilities through general play. Beams was the one who really stepped up, winning 32 possessions, 9 marks, kicking 3.1 and also sending the ball inside-50 on a game-high 9 times.
- Jarryd Blair was another Pies youngster to step up, and was brilliant at the stoppages, winning a whopping 17 contested possessions from his 25 touches. He has played the majority of games up forward this year, so it was great to see him thrown on the ball for stints and be able to dominate, adding another dangerous element to Collingwood’s plans for finals domination. His role was mainly across half-forward (with the already-noted time on ball), going head to head with the dangerous Hartlett, and unsurprisingly carving him up, kicking 4.1 to go with his possession tally, making him the most effective forward on the ground.
- Alan Didak was unsurprisingly given the sub vest, thanks to the fact he’s missed over a month of football. He didn’t come on until late in the third term, but still managed to run amok for a quarter, still picking up 14 possessions and 4 tackles, certainly looking a bit fitter than he has for a while. Hopefully this time off can see him come back a lot fitter and more able to have an effect on games, potentially making him a dangerous weapon for DT and SC finals.
Brisbane vs Adelaide:
- Tom Rockliff was the best for the Lions, working hard through the middle of the ground for all four quarters. He continues his great ball-winning form of late, picking up a fantastic 34 disposals (23 of which were kicks), as well as 7 marks, 5 tackles and a pretty nice goal in the first term. It’s quite simply his workrate that allows him to rack up such disposal numbers – not unlike Dane Swan, Rocky runs all day along with wings as a link-up man, setting up countless attacks, whilst also running with his teammates for many others. Should be a must have for season 2012.
- Jed Adcock looked to be returning to some decent form, picking up 20 disposals and 10 marks across half-back. Joel Patful went down with injury only five minutes into the game, so it looked for a while like Adcock may be forced to assume a much more defensive role, but fortunately this wasn’t the case as he was the Lions’ #1 go-to man across half-back. After two scores over 90 in a row, it looks like Adcock may be coming good at the right end of the season.
- Mitch Clark was good up forward, battling on admirably through a calf issue he sustained early in the game. After the knock, he was moved deep forward, but continued to present and mark well, booting 2 goals from 16 touches and 9 marks. Clark’s season has mainly been spent up forward, thanks to both the form of Leuenberger and the injuries to Brown, and whilst he started the year pretty slowly, his form over the last couple of months has been pretty solid, as he becomes more comfortable with the forward caper. There is a lot of talk around him switching clubs at the end of the year – if he goes to a club likely to play finals he could be worth considering for DT and SC 2012.
- Ash McGrath created quite a spark for the Lions, both up forward and through the midfield. He has moved away from his regular position of back pocket and has been putting some good games together as a small forward – the position where he started his career. He booted Brisbane’s first goal of the game and worked hard throughout the game to finish with 15 touches, 7 tackles and 3 goals.
- Scott Thompson was Adelaide’s best, roaming around the midfield, winning plenty of contested and uncontested ball. He continues to have his knockers, but his solid has been nothing short of solid as he has done his best to carry Adelaide throughout the season, despite the poor form of those around him. Brisbane tried throwing a few opponents at him, but none to any effect, with him finishing the game with 38 disposals, 4 marks and 8 tackles.
- Nathan Van Berlo had his second great game under Bickley, with 26 possessions, 6 marks, 9 tackles and 2 goals. I noted last week that he was playing with a much higher intensity since Craig’s sacking, clearly stepping up as the Skipper to lead the players through a clearly tough time for the football club. His work under packs is fantastic and he is the sort of player who will continually will himself between contests, hence his ability to find so much of the ball.
- Graham Johncock had a great game, and will go down as the man who won the game for the Crows. He played the majority of the game down back, but dropped forward when the game was there to be won, booting the last two goals of the game to edge the Crows to the win. His form this year has been great between his various injuries – he isn’t the greatest ball-winner, but knows how to use it creatively, making him a very decent SuperCoach option for the run home.
- Chris Knights was one player we got very excited about last week when he picked up 30-odd disposals on a wing – unfortunately though, that excitement looks to have been short lived. He did line up on the wing again, but failed to have much influence, picking up just 8 disposals until he hurt himself in the third term and was subsequently subbed off. There’s no news yet on the severity of the injury, but the fact it was his quad could mean he is possibly facing 2-3 weeks on the sidelines.
Hawthorn vs North Melbourne:
- Sam Mitchell had another solid, best on ground performance for the Hawks, despite coming into the game with some concern over his ankle. He simply continued his great form which he has carried for most of the year, picking up 31 disposals and 9 tackles, most of which were in the first three quarters (he did fade a bit later in the game). This is now his 10th ton in a row for Dream Team and 7th in a row for SuperCoach, which is an amazing stat – those at all in need for a new midfielder should look no further than Mitchell – especially with his great run home through the finals.
- Lance Franklin actually had a really quiet game – at three quarter time it looked like he may go goalless for the second week in a row, having nursed a sore hamstring through the game and just not getting into the contest. Fortunately, in the last quarter he broke free from Scott Thompson and booted 3 really crucial goals (whilst also giving away two 50-metre penalties to gift North Melbourne another). He also picked up 13 disposals and 6 tackles for the game, but it was his last quarter heroics we must thank for his respectable score.
- Shaun Burgoyne was another Hawk to start slowly, manning Aaron Edwards in the backline for the first three quarters, having his hand in a few good rebounds, but still not really influencing heaving on the game. Fortunately he was switched to the midfield in the final term and turned it on, winning several vital centre clearances and pumping the ball inside the 50 with great precision, setting up the majority of the Hawks’ final quarter goals, as well as kicking one of his own. With a little luck, we may be able to pick him as a defender in 2012!
- Grant Birchall was relatively quiet again, getting the job done without winning a stack of ball. I’m sure there have been plenty watch his price fall over the past month with an eye to trading him in, but the fact is that he is simply not in the point-scoring form of earlier in the year, averaging just 75 DT and 79 SC points from his past 5 games.
- Scott McMahon played one of his best games in a while, especially from a DT sense, playing the entire game as the loose man in defence and doing a very good job of it. He provided a great rebounding option from defence for the Roos, as well as intercepting plenty of Hawthorn forward entries, whilst spending half the game standing 10-metres in front of Buddy. Finished the game with 29 disposals, 8 marks and 6 tackles.
- Matt Campbell, was another player to suddenly turn it on in the last quarter, nearly single-handedly getting the Roos across the line with 4 goals in the final term. He had been kept to just one goal to ¾ time, but managed to get free from his opponent, Puopolo, and became the spark that North needed, with 3 of his goals coming in very quick succession at the start of the quarter. Unfortunately, his efforts weren’t enough to allow his side to hang on for the win.
- Todd Goldstein bounced back into some great form after having looked to tire over the past fortnight. He was a significant player in the match, doing a solid job to beat both Hale and Bailey in the ruck, winning 37 hitouts – the most of anyone on the ground. He was also good across the ground, winning 14 disposals, 5 tackles and kicking a goal. He now has a week off, so his owners will need to debate whether or not to keep him around – honestly, if you have a reasonable fill-in (Smith, Bailey or Lobbe), I’d hold onto him for the week as he could be a great point of difference in your run home to finals glory.
- Cam Richardson was again the sub, causing many to wonder why he even occupies a spot on their benches. However, he had one of his better games, despite starting the game donning the green vest – he didn’t come on until the third term, but won some key one-on-ones in the backline and up forward, and looked easily the most confident at senior level as he has all year. Perhaps he will come home strong as a finals specialist?
West Coast vs Richmond:
- Luke Shuey was in everything for the Eagles, dominating another game to prove that there is more than just Dyson Heppell in the hunt for the Rising Star award. He seemed to go right under Richmond’s radar as they instead chose to target LeCras and Priddis, but unfortunately for the Tigers, it was Shuey doing all the damage with his great work setting the ball up inside-50. He finished with 30 disposals, 7 marks and 1.2.
- Mark Nicoski kicked a personal best 6 goals straight, as Richmond failed to contain any of the Eagles’ small forwards, bar LeCras. He worked in tandem with Brad Ebert, who had 4.1 of his own, as the Eagles mids seemed happy to bomb the ball high and long – either the tall forwards would take a grad, or it would fall to the ground for the smaller blokes. Unfortunately, the Richmond defenders had their hands way to full with Naitanui to even think about Nicoski, meaning he found it pretty easy to get off the leash and kick a bag.
- Nic Naitanui showed that he is one of the main reasons the Eagles are going to be a scary prospect come September – when in form, he seems almost unstoppable, with a great leap and a great set of hands, if he doesn’t mark the ball he almost always draws the free kick, as defenders have no idea how to contain him. He had an amazing second quarter where he helped set up the Eagles lead with 2 insanely good marks and goals, surrounded by a stack of other highlight-reel material. Along with his goals he picked up 4 touches and 5 marks, but looked to struggle with soreness and fatigue as the game wore on.
- Dean Cox almost looked set to be subbed out of the game just five minutes in when he went down to the rooms with a groin injury. Fortunately he battled on, but he just couldn’t compete as he typically would. He was played mainly up forward and even down back, but Worsfold clearly made an effort to keep him out of the ruck. It looked like the match took a toll on him though, as he put out some of his worst numbers for the year – fingers crossed he’ll be good to go next week.
- Brett Deledio was good off half-back, seeming to have a hand in the majority of Richmond’s rebounds. It was actually not a bad game for the Tigers, despite what the scoreline suggests, and I think it actually had a lot to do with their improved disposal efficiency – something that has been lacking from their game for a while. Deledio was one of their best with the ball, often making the right decisions off half-back and always happy to take the ball on – it’s great that he had developed to be more than just an outside midfielder, now winning his own ball and taking on tacklers. He finished with 31 touches, 5 marks and a goal.
- Jack Riewoldt actually had a really poor start to the game, being taught a lesson by Darren Glass. Again he looked off his game and almost like he was carrying an injury. Fortunately he helped open the game up a bit in the third term, booting 3 goals in pretty quick succession to breathe some life into the Tigers. He still didn’t look at his best, but it was good to see some fighting spirit from him – something I don’t reckon we’ve seen in at least a month. He eventually finished with 4.1, along with 15 disposals and 7 marks.
- Tyrone Vickery had some good cameo moments, playing mainly up forward. He booted two goals, but worked hard and took some good grabs up the ground to suggest that he will be the player Richmond are hoping for over the next year or two. Clearly his body is still developing, but there is certainly some raw talent in him. Finished with 12 touches and 5 marks, booting 2 goals, including one ripper off the deck in the first term.
- Angus Graham looks just about cooked at senior level, putting in a sub-par performance against the West Coast trio of Cox, Naitanui and Lynch. He was clearly run off his feat, so only managed enough puff to win a few hitouts, only managing the 8 disposals around the ground. He showed some great signs last year, so it is disappointing to see such a fall from grace, although considering Richmond have no other ruckman to give the reigns to, he should at least be given the chance to prove himself over the remaining rounds.
After last week’s record-breaking round, where the top scorer in Dream Team scored a ridiculous 2833 points, we thought we’d try and find a historical team that could knock off that high score. So we went all the way back to Round 7 of 1992, nearly a decade before Dream Team even started, to see if we could do it.
This round was significant for a couple of reasons – firstly, Jason Dunstall made the highest ever recorded Dream Team score when he kicked 17.5 against Richmond, finishing him on a whopping 243 DT points. Also, Geelong recorded the highest ever score in the history of AFL – one goal more than what they did last week to Melbourne.
So it’s fair to say some big scores were pumped out this week – mainly by power forwards, with Dunstall, Ablett and Lockett kicking 36 goals between them!
We tried to keep the team as realistic as possible, selecting a mixture of rookies and premiums, as well as picking some of the ‘must-haves,’ despite their average scores (see Jim Stynes). Check out the first segment from our show last night where Dan details his theory behind the team in depth.
Amazingly, this team still falls 51 points short of beating last week’s highest score, which is simply ridiculous! Let us know below what you think of our team, and let us know if you can think of any other rounds in the history of the game that could beat our team, or even the winning team from last week!
Paul Roos (Fitz) 152
Barry Stoneham (Geel) 135
Dennis Carroll (Syd) 130
Glenn Jakovich (WC) 106
Ken Hinkley (Geel) 85
Ben Hart* (Adel) 59
Andrew Dunkley* (Syd) 53
Anthony Condon (Haw) 124
Ben Allen (Haw) 123
Wayne Campbell (Rich) 122
Chris McDermott (Adel) 111
Mick McGuane (Coll) 109
Peter Riccardi* (Geel) 88
Jim Stynes (Melb) 75
Steven Handley* (Geel) 109
(Essendon bye – Handley covering for Paul Salmon)
Jason Dunstall (C) (Haw) 243 x 2
Gary Ablett Snr. (Geel) 183
Tony Lockett (St.K) 143
Stephen Kernahan (Carl) 118
John Hutton* (Bris) 106
Anthony McGovern* (Syd) 95
Brenton Sanderson* (Adel) 69
OVERALL SCORE: 2782
All the teams as they are listed for Round 20. How do all the changes effect your AFL Dream Team and SuperCoach?
ST KILDA V FREMANTLE
ES – Fri Aug 05, 7:40pm
Tickets | TV & Radio
B: Sam Gilbert, Jason Blake, Raphael Clarke
HB: Brendon Goddard, Sam Fisher, Sean Dempster
C: David Armitage, Nick Dal Santo, Jason Gram
HF: Brett Peake, Nick Riewoldt, Jack Steven
F: Stephen Milne, Ryan Gamble, Adam Schneider
Foll: Ben McEvoy, Clinton Jones, Leigh Montagna
I/C: Justin Koschitzke, Jarryn Geary, Farren Ray, Dean Polo
Emg: Steven Baker, Nicholas Winmar, Tommy Walsh
In: Jason Blake, Nick Riewoldt
Out: Tom Lynch, Zac Dawson (Suspension)
B: Tendai Mzungu, Alex Silvagni, Antoni Grover
HB: Adam McPhee, Luke McPharlin, Paul Duffield
C: Greg Broughton, Nathan Fyfe, Hayden Ballantyne
HF: Dylan Roberton, Kepler Bradley, Garrick Ibbotson
F: Michael Johnson, Matthew Pavlich, Christopher Mayne
Foll: Zachary Clarke, Michael Barlow, Stephen Hill
I/C: Clayton Hinkley, Nick Suban, Clancee Pearce, Nick Lower
Emg: Ryan Crowley, Jayden Pitt, Jack Anthony
In: Luke McPharlin, Clayton Hinkley, Kepler Bradley, Nick Suban
Out: Ryan Crowley, Rhys Palmer (Ankle), Matthew de Boer (Knee), Jack Anthony
CARLTON V MELBOURNE
MCG – Sat Aug 06, 2:10pm
Tickets | TV & Radio
B: Nick Duigan, Lachlan Henderson, Jeremy Laidler
HB: Aaron Joseph, Bret Thornton, Zach Tuohy
C: Heath Scotland, Chris Judd, Christopher Yarran
HF: Jeffrey Garlett, Bryce Gibbs, Kade Simpson
F: Eddie Betts, Matthew Kreuzer, Andrew Walker
Foll: Robert Warnock, Marc Murphy, Mitch Robinson
I/C: Dennis Armfield, David Ellard, Brock McLean, Marcus Davies
Emg: Ryan Houlihan, Setanta O’hAilpin, Kane Lucas
In: Aaron Joseph
Out: Ryan Houlihan
B: James Strauss, James Frawley, Clint Bartram
HB: Colin Garland, Jared Rivers, Joel Macdonald
C: Jack Trengove, Jordie McKenzie, Aaron Davey
HF: Lynden Dunn, Jack Watts, Tom Scully
F: Brad Green, Ricky Petterd, Jeremy Howe
Foll: Max Gawn, Brent Moloney, Nathan Jones
I/C: Matthew Bate, Stefan Martin, Jordan Gysberts, Luke Tapscott
Emg: Colin Sylvia, Tom McDonald, Daniel Nicholson
In: Clint Bartram, Aaron Davey, Tom Scully, Max Gawn, Joel Macdonald
Out: Mark Jamar (Foot), Colin Sylvia, Addam Maric, Liam Jurrah, Daniel Nicholson
GEELONG CATS V GOLD COAST SUNS
SS – Sat Aug 06, 1:40pm
Tickets | TV & Radio
B: Josh Hunt, Matthew Scarlett, Tom Lonergan
HB: Darren Milburn, Harry Taylor, David Wojcinski
C: Andrew Mackie, Jimmy Bartel, James Kelly
HF: Paul Chapman, Cameron Mooney, Mathew Stokes
F: Travis Varcoe, James Podsiadly, Steve Johnson
Foll: Trent West, Joel Corey, Joel Selwood
I/C: Cameron Ling, Tom Hawkins, Mitch Duncan, Allen Christensen
Emg: Tom Gillies, Nathan Vardy, Cameron Guthrie
In: Josh Hunt, James Podsiadly
Out: Corey Enright (Soreness), Brad Ottens (Knee)
Gold Coast Suns
B: Jeremy Taylor, Rory Thompson, Campbell Brown
HB: Joel Wilkinson, Nathan Bock, Jarrod Harbrow
C: Maverick Weller, Jared Brennan, Sam Iles
HF: Daniel Stanley, Tom Lynch, Nathan Krakouer
F: Josh Fraser, Steven May, Harley Bennell
Foll: Zac Smith, David Swallow, Michael Rischitelli
I/C: Hayden Jolly, Trent McKenzie, Daniel Harris, Seb Tape
Emg: Josh Toy, Matt Shaw, Tom Hickey
In: Daniel Harris, Sam Iles, Joel Wilkinson, Seb Tape
Out: Karmichael Hunt (Illness), Gary Ablett (Hamstring), Matt Shaw, Dion Prestia (Achilles)
ESSENDON V SYDNEY SWANS
ES – Sat Aug 06, 7:20pm
Tickets | TV & Radio
B: David Myers, Michael Hurley, Dustin Fletcher
HB: Kyle Hardingham, Jake Carlisle, Ricky Dyson
C: Mark McVeigh, Jobe Watson, Jake Melksham
HF: David Zaharakis, Stewart Crameri, Leroy Jetta
F: Alwyn Davey, Patrick Ryder, Angus Monfries
Foll: David Hille, Brent Stanton, Heath Hocking
I/C: Kyle Reimers, Ben Howlett, Dyson Heppell, Michael Ross
Emg: Henry Slattery, Andrew Welsh, Tom Bellchambers
In: Dustin Fletcher, Heath Hocking, Michael Hurley
Out: Tom Bellchambers, Brent Prismall (Knee), Travis Colyer (Foot)
B: Rhyce Shaw, Ted Richards, Alex Johnson
HB: Martin Mattner, Heath Grundy, Nicholas Smith
C: Jarrad McVeigh, Adam Goodes, Craig Bird
HF: Ryan O’Keefe, Sam Reid, Luke Parker
F: Daniel Hannebery, Lewis Roberts-Thomson, Ben McGlynn
Foll: Shane Mumford, Jude Bolton, Kieren Jack
I/C: Tadhg Kennelly, Nick Malceski, Josh P. Kennedy, Lewis Jetta
Emg: Jesse White, Trent Dennis-Lane, Nathan Gordon
Milestones: Ted Richards – 150 games
PORT ADELAIDE V COLLINGWOOD
AS – Sat Aug 06, 7:10pm
Tickets | TV & Radio
B: Nick Salter, Michael Pettigrew, Troy Chaplin
HB: Hamish Hartlett, Jackson Trengove, Jasper Pittard
C: Danyle Pearce, Travis Boak, Kane Cornes
HF: Robert Gray, Daniel Stewart, Cameron Hitchcock
F: Brett Ebert, Chad Cornes, Justin Westhoff
Foll: Matthew Lobbe, Domenic Cassisi, Matt Thomas
I/C: Steven Salopek, David Rodan, Mitchell Banner, Cameron O’Shea
Emg: Matthew Broadbent, Jason Davenport, Ben Jacobs
In: Daniel Stewart, Jasper Pittard
Out: Tom Logan (Foot), Jay Schulz (Foot/Back)
B: Leon Davis, Ben Reid, Simon Buckley
HB: Ben Johnson, Nick Maxwell, Tyson Goldsack
C: Dane Swan, Dale Thomas, Alan Didak
HF: Jarryd Blair, Chris Tarrant, Andrew Krakouer
F: Steele Sidebottom, Travis Cloke, Leigh Brown
Foll: Darren Jolly, Scott Pendlebury, Luke Ball
I/C: Cameron Wood, Dayne Beams, Luke Rounds, Alex Fasolo
Emg: Brent Macaffer, Ben Sinclair, Tom Young
In: Alan Didak, Dale Thomas, Cameron Wood, Luke Rounds
Out: Heritier O’Brien (Knee), Brent Macaffer, Lachlan Keeffe, Ben Sinclair
Milestones: Chris Tarrant – 250 games
BRISBANE LIONS V ADELAIDE
G – Sun Aug 07, 1:10pm
Tickets | TV & Radio
B: Ashley McGrath, Joel Patfull, Cheynee Stiller
HB: Brent Staker, Niall McKeever, Jed Adcock
C: Andrew Raines, Tom Rockliff, Pearce Hanley
HF: James Polkinghorne, Mitchell Clark, Sam Sheldon
F: Patrick Karnezis, Aaron Cornelius, Todd Banfield
Foll: Matthew Leuenberger, Simon Black, Jack Redden
I/C: Luke Power, James Hawksley, Amon Buchanan, Josh Dyson
EMG: Ryan Harwood, Matt Maguire, Rohan Bewick
In: Josh Dyson
Out: Matt Maguire
New: Josh Dyson (Eastern Ranges U18 (VIC))
Milestones: Jack Redden – 50 games
B: Michael Doughty, Ben Rutten, Andy Otten
HB: Graham Johncock, Daniel Talia, Brent Reilly
C: Brodie Smith, Scott Thompson, Bernie Vince
HF: Rory Sloane, Taylor Walker, Chris Knights
F: Ivan Maric, Jack Gunston, Jared Petrenko
Foll: Sam Jacobs, Patrick Dangerfield, Nathan van Berlo
I/C: Tony Armstrong, Ricky Henderson, Aidan Riley, Matthew Wright
EMG: Myke Cook, Shaun McKernan, Luke Thompson
In: Tony Armstrong
Out: David Mackay (Knee)
HAWTHORN V NORTH MELBOURNE
AU – Sun Aug 07, 2:10pm
Tickets | TV & Radio
B: Paul Puopolo, Josh Gibson, Thomas Murphy
HB: Matt Suckling, Grant Birchall, Brent Guerra
C: Jordan Lewis, Sam Mitchell, Isaac Smith
HF: Michael Osborne, Lance Franklin, Liam Shiels
F: Cyril Rioli, David Hale, Shaun Burgoyne
Foll: Max Bailey, Luke Hodge, Brad Sewell
I/C: Rick Ladson, Brendan Whitecross, Luke Breust, Kyle Cheney
EMG: Jordan Lisle, Will Sierakowski, Cameron Bruce
In: Luke Hodge
Out: Xavier Ellis (Soreness)
B: Robert Tarrant, Cameron Pedersen, Michael Firrito
HB: Brady Rawlings, Scott Thompson, Scott McMahon
C: Daniel Wells, Levi Greenwood, Jack Ziebell
HF: Brent Harvey, Aaron Edwards, Ryan Bastinac
F: Matt Campbell, Drew Petrie, Lachlan Hansen
Foll: Todd Goldstein, Kieran Harper, Andrew Swallow
I/C: Lindsay Thomas, Ben Cunnington, Cameron Richardson, Shaun Atley
EMG: Cruize Garlett, Jamie Macmillan, Gavin Urquhart
In: Lindsay Thomas, Shaun Atley
Out: Leigh Adams (Knee), Gavin Urquhart
WEST COAST EAGLES V RICHMOND
PS – Sun Aug 07, 2:40pm
Tickets | TV & Radio
West Coast Eagles
B: Shannon Hurn, Darren Glass, Will Schofield
HB: Ashley Smith, Mitch Brown, Scott Selwood
C: Matthew Rosa, Matthew Priddis, Andrew Embley
HF: Luke Shuey, Jack Darling, Andrew Gaff
F: Mark Nicoski, Quinten Lynch, Mark LeCras
Foll: Dean Cox, Daniel Kerr, Adam Selwood
I/C: Chris Masten, Bradley Ebert, Nic Naitanui, Patrick McGinnity
EMG: Brett Jones, Bradd Dalziell, Brad Sheppard
In: Daniel Kerr, Mitch Brown, Chris Masten, Nic Naitanui
Out: Beau Waters (elbow), Eric Mackenzie (Injured), Thomas Swift, Scott Lycett
B: Bachar Houli, Alex Rance, Luke McGuane
HB: Brett Deledio, Will Thursfield, Matt Dea
C: Trent Cotchin, Dustin Martin, Shane Edwards
HF: Daniel Jackson, Tyrone Vickery, Reece Conca
F: Robin Nahas, Jack Riewoldt, Jake King
Foll: Angus Graham, Shane Tuck, Nathan Foley
I/C: Mitch Morton, Mitchell Farmer, Jeromey Webberley, Shaun Grigg, Brad Miller
EMG: Jeromey Webberley, Matthew White, Ben Griffiths
In: Mitchell Farmer, Matt Dea, Shaun Grigg, Brad Miller
Out: Chris Newman (Knee), Jake Batchelor (Shoulder), Matthew White, Ben Griffiths
Milestones: Daniel Jackson – 100 games
Toby runs through all the best Captain choices for both AFL Dream Team and SuperCoach. Who will you be locking this week as your team pushes for a finals berth?
Well, it’s been an article that has seen many face-lifts this year – we have had ‘Captain Dan’s Captains,’ and recently ‘Kristian’s Kaptains’ has had it’s time in the sun, but now I finally get my own shot with ‘Captain Toby’s Captains.’ Uncreative name? Yes. But heck, I’ve always wanted to be a captain, so I finally get my shot.
As you are likely aware, Thursdays typically see the Boys on the Bubble article featured on Footy Tragic, but unfortunately, due to the fact we have NO rookies who have played the past two game – and I wasn’t going to get away with an article that featured absolutely NO content – we thought it appropriate that we offered up a Captains article instead! Enjoy!
Steve Johnson vs Gold Coast
Well, this is a pretty tempting one straight off the bat – we saw what happened last week when a flat Melbourne side showed up at Skilled Stadium – Geelong took it upon themselves to thrash them by 186 points with Stevie J kicking seven of the most beautiful goals you have ever seen (although they would have been more beautiful had it not been bye week!). We also look back to Stevie’s last game against Gold Coast in round 10 – 171 DT points and 162 SC points as he bagged another seven goals. So if we were to do the math…
Steve Johnson + Gold Coast + Skilled Stadium = MASSIVE Score
However, if there is ONE thing to perhaps sway us to look at other options, it is amazingly Stevie’s history at Skilled Stadium. I’m sure many of you have quizzical looks on your faces – ‘But ALL Geelong players SMASH it at Skilled Stadium, yeh?’ – well yeah, but Stevie not so much. If we take out his massive game vs Melbourne on the weekend, his previous four games there have averaged him 92 DT and 84 SC points – so nothing amazing. That said, that formula above DOES look pretty tempting.
He would be the out-there captain selection this week. He is pretty likely to go bang, although his history stats are a bit inconsistent to totally rely upon him. I reckon I’ll be able to squeeze him into my top-5 though, for what it’s worth.
Joel Selwood vs Gold Coast
OK, I’ve already introduced the Geelong at Skilled vs Gold Coast theory, so I won’t go into it again… However, if you thought Steve Johnson’s stats looked delicious, then you should see Selwood’s…
Firstly, last time he played Gold Coast he had a pass-mark 116 DT and 136 SC points. But it is his history at Skilled Stadium that gets the juices flowing – over his past five games at the Cattery he has averaged a whopping 137 DT and 139 SC points! These numbers are massive – I challenge you to find a player that performs any better at a certain ground! There is no doubting that Geelong will absolutely PUMP Gold Coast on Saturday, and really, Selwood has been a great Captain option all year (bar his suspended weeks of course), so sticking the ‘C’ on him against the Gold Coast – the leakiest team in the AFL (for DT and SC points) – and down at his favorite hunting ground would certainly not be a bad idea! Surely he deserves Vice-Captaincy at least!
Dane Swan vs Port Adelaide:
Sometimes we almost try to find reasons why we shouldn’t pick Swanny – maybe he will get tagged, he’s playing a good team, or perhaps he ONLY averages 110 against his opponent – however, every time we don’t give him the captaincy we live to regret it. But there are some weeks where he simply screams ‘Pick Me!’ and there is really no point in even trying to argue with him… THIS is one of those weeks…
So firstly lets have a look at his last 5 games against Port Adelaide:
DT: 109, 82, 154, 141, 137 (Av. 125)
SC: 118, 118, 166, 127, 166 (Av. 139)
Those averages are, quite frankly, ridiculous. Especially when we consider the form he is currently in, averaging 134 DT and 126 SC points from his past five games (including 171 DT – a personal best – and 176 SC last week). Port Adelaide is also the team he holds his highest possession tally against, when he racked up 48 touches against them last year in round 10. In years gone by we have often been afraid of our DT and SC guns playing off against Port Adelaide in fear of Kane Cornes, but fortunately (or unfortunately), he is not a factor anymore – his influence has waned over the past couple of seasons, and regardless, he would be more likely to play on Pendlebury anyway, who is a much better user of the ball.
Anyway, I digress – without wanting to give away my top-five Captain options just yet, I reckon if you have Swan you simply have to lock him in – he has awesome form against Port and is coming into the game on the back of a score in excess of 170 points. We know what he can do – don’t regret it come Monday!
Chris Judd vs Melbourne
We all know that some players are Dream Team relevant and not SuperCoach relevant, and then there are some the other way around – Juddy is certainly one of them (although, to give him credit, he has become a bit of a DT champ of late too). But this difference in point-scoring ability seems to be exemplified against Melbourne, a side he averages 108 DT and 146 SC against – a whopping difference of 38 points. So simply, he is one to consider as a SuperCoach captain, but put him way out of your thoughts for Dream Team.
Melbourne has been struggling a bit lately with their whole 186 point loss and coach sacking and all that, so it would be pretty easy to pencil Carlton in for an easy win already. However, we know that sides can bounce back pretty significantly after a coach sacking, and if there’s one thing we know about Todd Viney, their caretaker coach, it’s that he is all about tough, uncompromising football. So don’t put the win in the book for the Blues just yet. Fortunately, I don’t think their playing group will be either.
That all said, I reckon Juddy could still be up for a pretty decent game, despite Melbourne’s resiliance – it would be assumed that McKenzie will go head-to-head with Judd, but we can also use the assumed knowledge that it is very hard to stop Juddy. He is clearly very fit this year and has been working his way into games very well – even if he starts slowly, he manages to have had a significant effect on the game by the final siren. For this reason, put together with his great history against Melbourne, I reckon he could be a great pick for SuperCoach captain this week.
Scott Pendlebury vs Port Adelaide:
Pendles has been a superstar this year, however his history against Port Adelaide is enough to make you a little concerned – 98 DT and 107 SC from his past five games. That said, Pendlebury didn’t really become a DT jet until this year, so his scores of 121 DT and 120 SC against Port Adelaide earlier in the year should hold much more stead. He is another player is ripping form recently, coming into the game on the back of a five week average of 120 DT and 141 SC (including 141 DT and 160 SC last week), so this certainly shouldn’t be discounted when making your decision – in fact, it’s enough to make us give some forgiveness for his average average against Port.
Others to consider:
Brendon Goddard vs Fremantle:
BJ has a great history against the Dockers, averaging 112 DT and 129 SC from his past five games against them. He is also back under the roof of the dome where he has averaged 119 DT and 132 SC from his past five games.
Sam Mitchell vs North Melbourne:
Firstly, Mitchell is under an injury cloud this week which makes him a slightly nervous selection. Also, his history against North is not amazing (he also hasn’t managed to play them in two years, having missed those games through injury… Cursed perhaps?) – he has averaged 85 DT and 119 SC against them in his past five outings.
Dean Cox vs Richmond:
This looks a pretty tantalizing battle – Richmond’s rucks have been poor all year and Cox is coming off one of the best games of his career. In some bad news though, Naitanui will be back (whose absence last week did help his scoring), but the rest is good news – he averages 105 DT and 95 SC from his past five games against Richmond, but his exciting numbers come from the fact he is playing at Subiaco, averaging 118 DT and 134 SC at the venue.
Marc Murphy vs Melbourne:
Murph’s history against Melbourne isn’t amazing, only averaging 108 DT and 103 SC from his past five games against them. However, his game earlier this year saw scores of 145 DT and 147 SC, suggesting that he should be OK this week – recent history is good history! I think there are better options out there, but he could still be a pretty decent pick if you reckon the Blues will beat up on Melbourne.
Gary Ablett vs Geelong:
Haven’t you heard? He’s done his hamstring an won’t be out there this week… He IS hoping he will be back for the first week of DT/SC finals though… #Phew
My Top 5 Dream Team Picks:
- Dane Swan
- Steve Johnson
- Joel Selwood
- Dean Cox
- Scott Pendlebury
My Top 5 SuperCoach Picks:
- Chris Judd
- Dane Swan
- Joel Selwood
- Scott Pendlebury
- Dean Cox
Dan runs through all the action from this weekends state-league matches. Which AFL listed players are pushing for a senior game?
Tony Armstrong was probably the pick of the bunch as far as Crows in the SANFL go. He had 26 touches and was named fifth best, mostly across half back for North Adelaide. His form has been pretty good lately and it seems Neil Craig had a line through his name. Will Bicks give him one last crack?
Shaun McKernan kicked four goals for South Adelaide, amongst 13 disposals. Youngster Jarryd Lyons had a decent game for the second week in a row. With the change of scenery at Adelaide he could be a slight chance to be blooded for a game before the year is out.
Brad Moran put in a listless performance for West Adelaide, conceding a few goals before limping off with a calf injury and only three disposals to his name.
Brisbane reserves, along with their seniors, had a bye on the weekend.
Setanta O’hAilpan had his second hitout on return from a hand injury that sidelined him for six weeks. He kicked three goals, all in the second and third quarters and had a better game than his return last week.
Jordan Russell had a solid enough first half, but copped a corky in the third quarter and sat out the rest of the game.
Matthew Watson was good in defence, with his trademark kicking being a feature. He continues to show signs, but with emergence of Henderson in the back line, he’s probably going to keep developing in the VFL this year. Kane Lucas was decent enough, though he has been struggling this year after missing a lot of footy with a knee injury. Ed Curnow didn’t have much of an impact with the long season perhaps starting to take its toll on him.
Oddly, considering their strong position, Collingwood is the club that has the most young players pushing for a debut (after debuting Sinclair, Rounds, Keeffe and Fasolo in the past couple of months and sitting on top of the ladder). Josh Thomas had a really strong inside game and picked up 29 touches against Frankston.
Tom Young had 34 touches across half back in one of his better games for the year. He plays with plenty of confidence, but often just starts going before he seems to have a plan. His decision making needs some work, but he’s very exciting to watch.
Jye Bolton was named best on ground for his four goal performance, displaying plenty of hardness in the midfield. He’s very likely to get upgraded to the senior list at the end of the year after putting together a very good season. Paul Seedsman is another one to have impressed on the weekend. Their player development is something to behold. Kirk Ugle was kept out on the weekend, along with Ben Sinclair as emergency cover for Dale Thomas (obviously Sinclair got the nod).
Bendigo Bombers had a bye on the weekend.
With their immense injury list Freo only had eight players in WAFL action on the weekend. Not many of them actually performed too well, with Byron Schammer being the stand out with 26 touches, five marks, four tackles and a goal.
Peter Faulks was probably a victim of the wet weather to not get a debut this week with Luke McPharlin suspended. He had nine touches and four tackles at full back for the Peel Thunder.
Ben Bucovaz had 15 touches, five marks and four tackles with 2.1 a little bit further up the ground than his usual half back role.
Jay van Berlo’s West Perth had a bye, but with Matt de Boer out for the year with a knee injury you’d imagine he comes back in this week. Clayton Hinkley was kept out of action as an emergency for the Dockers.
Geelong, in a massive upset (only their fourth win of the year) completely smashed Melbourne’s affiliate Casey Scorpions (who are fighting for a top four spot). The reserves won by 128 points and put on an incredibly accurate 31.6. This means that between the AFL and VFL Geelong beat Melbourne and their affiliate by a combined total of 314 points, while kicking 68 goals on the day. Solid effort.
You would imagine that most of the Cats inclusions in the coming weeks would come from those who didn’t play at all on the weekend (Byrnes, J.Hunt, T.Hunt, Menzel, Podsiadly, Vardy all were out with injury). As for an eye to the future though, Jordan Schroder was really impressive. He goes at it nice and hard with a good knack for goals too, finishing the day with four. There was an article earlier in the year in the Sun identifying Geelong’s drafting policy as replacing the guns they already have – Schroder was aptly compared to Chappy.
Jonathan Simpkin was named best on ground for his seven goal performance in the forward line. Simpkin usually plays as a hard midfielder, but due to a lack of talls on the weekend he played as a medium forward.
Cam Guthrie arguably had his best game of the season. Josh Cowan was also solid, with everyone in the midfield doing a good job. The pair have already been blooded this year, but Cowan in particular has been hovering around the emergency list lately, so he still appears to be right in the mix.
Basketball convert, Ryan Bathie played very well in the ruck up against Max Gawn. It’s not a position too familiar to him, as he’s been playing key back most of the year, but with West in the seniors and Blake, Vardy and Simpson all out injured he shouldered the responsibility and showed some really promising signs.
Gold Coast reserves had a bye.
Box Hill Hawks had a bye too.
Gee, it was a real crumby day down at Geelong for Melbourne. Well, surely their affiliate Casey Scorpions (fifth on the ladder prior to the round) would’ve beaten tenth placed Geelong, who only had three wins for the year…In a sign of things to come the Geelong reserves somehow beat Casey by 128 points. What the hell?! At least the AFL game kind of made sense, but Casey would have been heavily favoured to win this game, not get thrashed by 20 goals!
Aaron Davey made his return from eight weeks on the sidelines with a knee injury. He got named sixth best, but it doesn’t sound like that was any sort of glowing honour. Joel Macdonald also returned from a four week knee injury and at least tried to create some run.
Max Gawn had a crack in the ruck at least and Clint Bartram was OK. Melbourne will obviously make a few changes this week, but there wasn’t much pushing up. Maybe promising forward Lucas Cook could be blooded before the season is over.
Lindsay Thomas had that famous game against Carlton last year where he kicked 7.5 along with eight tackles. He also kicked four against them the previous time against Carlton. Unfortunately North Melbourne used up all of his mysterious power that appears when they play Carlton in the VFL. He kicked nine goals out of North Ballarat’s 13 in a two point victory over second placed Williamstown (9.3 for the record). There’s nothing like a big bag of goals to get over a terrible case of the yips.
Cruize Garlett continued his domination, while his mysterious absence from the senior team extends another week. He had 39 touches in a massive midfield display. Shaun Atley had 23 touches and seven tackles to be named in the bests as well.
I was at Sandringham on Sunday to watch Werribee take on Sandy. Majak Daw was super impressive. With Hamish McIntosh being a late withdrawal Daw shouldered the responsibility of ruck duties with aplomb. He had 16 touches, six marks and 21 hitouts – a couple of those were very exciting pack marks. All year I’ve been saying Daw is not what the Kangaroos need, but I reckon the time is right to blood him. His development has been huge this year and some exposure to the top level would do him (and the team) the world of good.
Nathan Grima looks ready for a return. He was strong in defence, reading the flight of the ball really well. It’s two weeks in a row I’ve seen Werribee and he just looks a class above VFL level. Ben McKinley was generating plenty of shots on goal, but only finished with two, never really getting the hang of the conditions.
There wasn’t a whole lot standing out for Port in the SANFL on the weekend. Jacob Surjan was probably the pick of the bunch with 22 touches, six marks and five tackles. There will be a few forced changes at Port this week, so he might be a show for his first AFL game in eight weeks.
Daniel Motlop kicked 2.0 from 14 touches and eight marks. Surely he is gone at the end of the year, but he might get a chance to rescue his Power career late in the year due to a few injuries they copped in the Showdown.
Daniel Stewart did precisely nothing with only five touches to his name, but Jay Schulz going down with injury is probably his call up. John Butcher is another who could be in the mix, but he was pretty quiet with six touches and 1.0.
Rookie listed Tom Jonas was very good in defence on Butcher, in what was a bitter sweet match up for the Power. With Trengove injured and very little in the cupboard Jonas wouldn’t be the most illogical selection this week. His form was good prior to a six week hand injury and he’s played two games on return – both pretty good and was named fifth best on the weekend for Norwood.
Former basketballer Daniel Bass has had a solid extended run in the seniors for South Adelaide and was named sixth best on the weekend with ten touches, six marks and 19 hitouts.
A lot of the same performed well for Coburg in their surprise win over the Northern Bullants. Jayden Post is one that I rate, but he just doesn’t seem to get the opportunities at Richmond. He was named second best for Coburg for his role in defence. He spoiled well and picked up 22 possessions. I reckon he could do with an extended run in the seniors to try and find his groove at AFL level.
Jeromey Webberley had a really good first half. He faded a little bit in the second half, but was still named amongst the best for Coburg. Tom Hislop was typically good, with hardness at the contest, but Richmond have been there and done that with him. Good VFL player.
Andrew Browne dominated in the ruck against a much shorter opponent, Nick Meese. He had 37 hitouts and 21 possessions.
As mentioned above, I saw Sandringham take on Werribee. They were really disappointing, but the one bright light was Tommy Walsh. With Zac Dawson missing this week with suspension it could be a good opportunity for him. However, Jason Blake was also pretty solid and I can see him filling Dawson’s defensive role. I didn’t mind Tom Simpkin’s game either. Or maybe Nick Riewoldt just returns and someone within the team swings back.
Steven Baker was Steven Baker. Robert Eddy was Robert Eddy. They did as you would expect by working really hard and undoubtedly Baker will find his way back into the team before finals.
Michael Gardiner got through the game fine, but I was surprised to see him named in the best players for Sandy. I thought he was well beaten by Majak Daw and had minimal impact on the game. At one stage in the third I was convinced he was finished for the day because I hadn’t seen him in ages, but it turns out he was fine and just ineffectual for a while.
I really worry for St.Kilda’s depth. The young guys they’d be wanting to push for selection like Alistair Smith, Nick Heyne, Will Johnson and Nick Winmar were pretty average. Arryn Siposs missed for a fourth week in a row with a shin complaint.
Sydney reserves had a bye. I’m loving all of these byes. I actually started by filling in the byes first so I can very quickly say I’ve knocked over five teams.
Once again, West Coast boasted a whole bunch of good performances at WAFL level. East Freo’s best players list read as a bunch of guys pushing for Eagles selection. Chris Masten was awesome with 34 touches and four goals, along with seven tackles.
Bradd Dalziell had 27 touches, eight marks, six tackles and 3.0, while Tim Houlihan continues his impressive season with 25 disposals, nine marks and 2.0. Koby Stevens will be battling for a role as an inside midfielder, but was pipped by Masten this weekend, however he himself had it 29 times. Jordan Jones had 27 touches and eight tackles for Peel Thunder.
With Williamstown playing in Ballarat and clashing with the Western Bulldogs game this weekend it’s hard to get much information on how the young pups went, but Ayce Cordy impressed for his role as a tall defender and it was the third week in a row he’s been named in the best players for Williamstown. He will be a big chance to debut in the run home.
Lindsay Gilbee was good across half back and was named best on ground. Christian Howard kicked two goals from the wing, while Jason Tutt continues to push his case for a debut with his ability to spread from the contest and kick long.
Lukas Markovic was strong in defence, while Mitch Wallis was typically good in his inside role.
Welcome to the first edition of TAC Cup All-Stars! For the next five weeks, similarly to Dan’s State League All Stars article, I’ll run through the standout contributors from the weekend as well as keeping an eye out for the top prospects.
Brandon Ellis is one guy I spoke about in my article two weeks ago. He made the All-Australian team after a very solid carnival, and he continued on from that on the weekend. He was named 4th best for Calder with his 30 disposal performance, including an outstanding 14 handball receives.
Michael Talia didn’t find a whole lot of the ball, but his defensive work was solid all day, even though he didn’t have a whole lot to do. He finished with 11 disposals and 4 marks.
Ozgur Uysal is a small forward to look out for, but he was fairly quiet on the day, with 15 disposals and the 1 goal.
Daniel Markworth is a medium half forward, and he booted 5 goals on the day. He’s a mature age player, as he’s already 19, but his chances of getting drafted this year would be pretty good.
Toby Greene is now starting to really dominate this level. He was named 3rd best for Oakleigh with 31 touches and a goal. I really like this guy’s work ethic!
Dom Tyson didn’t play this week. I’m unable to find out why that was the case, but Oakleigh did seem to have a few key players out, as well as Jack Viney and Tom Curran.
Matthew Arnot didn’t get named in the bests, but he was great with 22 disposals, 10 tackles, a goal, and 9 handball receives.
Jack Crisp, one of Murray’s prime midfield movers had a solid day, with 20 disposals and 7 tackles with a goal. Strangely he wasn’t named in the bests.
Jake Reeves, standing at only 194cm tall (I think he’s taller), took the ruck and knocked up 30 hit outs but only 8 possessions around the ground.
First round prospect, Clay Smith, had a great day out, even though he wasn’t named in the bests. He racked up 26 disposals and 2 goals in Gippland’s win.
The skipper Shaun Wyatt also got plenty of the footy with 25 disposals and 11 handball receives.
Half forward Tim Membrey had a day out, bagging 6 goals and being named best on ground.
Oliver Wines was named 2nd best for Bendigo in their loss to the Northern Knights. He kicked 2 goals, collected 14 disposals and plucked 5 grabs in a small forward role.
Sam Kerridge gathered 21 disposals at 66% effectiveness with 10 handball receives and 7 tackles running through the midfield.
Knight’s star on baller Doug Morris had a day out, gathering 36 disposals, 2 goals and 7 tackles. His Dream Team score was an impressive 135.
Gun ruckman Billy Longer also had a great game also with 14 disposals, 2 goals and 35 hitouts. His stocks are rising by the day.
Tall forward Matthew Atta did well, taking 9 marks and finding a bit of the footy as well with 19 disposals.
One of my personal favourites, Liam Sumner was best on ground with his 21 disposal, 3 goal and 11 tackle performance. He’s a ripping player.
Alex Woodward was great as well, with 29 disposals and 2 goals.
Big boy Jonathon Patton was Eastern’s second best player, gathering 20 disposals, 10 marks and kicking 3.3 in a side that got pummelled. It was a great effort.
Hayden Crozier was no where to be seen, with only 6 disposals on the day.
Talented ruckman Leif Cope was Eastern’s best player, with 18 disposals, 26 hitouts and 6 marks. Keep an eye out for that name.
NORTH BALLARAT VS WESTERN JETS
Unfortunately there aren’t any accurate stats on this game and I didn’t get to see this game live, having been played in Ballarat. The big news out of this game is that Will Hoskin-Elliot was named 2nd best on ground for the Jets, and he also kicked two goals.
The highly rated Matthew Buntine showed his worth, gathering 28 disposals and 10 handball receives. More importantly, 22 of those disposals were effective. He’s such a great ball user.
Darren Minchington was best on ground, kicking 3.3, as well as gathering 23 disposals.
Devon Smith didn’t play.
Zak Sherman had a massive afternoon in the midfield, kicking a goal as well as gathering 37 disposals, 9 marks and a HUGE 17 handball receives. (132 DT)
Jordan Keras was much the same with an even better 19 handball receives, 32 disposals, 6 tackles and 9 marks. (124 DT)