Martin Mattner (Sydney) – Mattner displayed the sort of effort Melbourne so desperately needs by performing selfless acts for his teammates on a number of occasions. His run and carry of the ball was excellent also. he had 20 disposals at 90% disposal efficiency, including some quality forward 50 entries and goal assists.
Brian Lake (Western Bulldogs) – Lake is getting back to his best form this year and his effort against the Gold Coast in Darwin was brilliant. He showed great read of the play and was a large reason why the Suns could only manage 4 goals for the game. His ability to take contested marks in defence is second to none. Overall he took 4 contested marks and had 24 touches.
Corey Enright (Geelong) – Aside from losing a battle with Swan when the great Dane floated forward, Enright was unsurpassed on the night. He went about his business in typical Enright fashion; hard at the ball, win the contest and deliver safely to a team-mate. He had 25 touches and his composure in high pressure situations was helpful for Geelong.
Beau Waters (West Coast) – Waters produced a classy performance off half back for the Eagels, often pushing up the ground and delivering damaging ball inside 50. He finished with 27 possessions and 122 Dream Team points in a BOG display against the Saints.
Harry Taylor (Geelong) – Taylor was the main man with the job at curtailing Cloke and at times Dawes. Neither powerhouse forward had much influence on the game and Taylor was generally too good in aerial contests. He also applied pressure when the ball hit the ground and finished with a game high 9 tackles.
Jack Watts (Melbourne) – It wasn’t a great week for backs and this probably shows through with Watts getting a spot despite being pulverised into 101 point submission. Nevertheless, Watts played a pretty good game as the loose man in defence. He racked up plenty of ball (34 touches), took some nice grabs, had 8 rebound 50’s and even helped out with ruckwork a little.
Dean Cox (West Coast) – The Big Eagle’s career seems to be mirroring what is required by an AFL ruckman. He is dangerous in the forward line and as the “2nd ruck” for the Eagles he produced a lazy 22 hit-outs and kicked 5 goals whilst spending large times forward. He was too big for St Kilda’s defenders. Arguably he should be selected in the forward line here but there were not many stand out rucks this week.
Patrick Dangerfield (Adelaide) – The Danger man was arguably the player of the round in his clinical mockery of Carlton’s gun midfield. He won contested ball and burst out from packs, gathering 35 possessions and 142 Dream Team points. His two goals had Bruce and Dennis drooling and talking Brownlows.
Brett Deledio (Richmond) – Deledio walks into the team of the week this week, although he was running hard throughout most of his match Saturday night. He used his speed and excellent disposal to set up the Tigers’ forward forays. He had several ‘game high’ stats; 7 inside 50’s, 35 possessions, 10 tackles, and an astonishing 160 Dream Team points. For his efforts he won the Yiooken Medal for best on ground in the Dreamtime game.
Kieren Jack (Sydney) – Jack played his best game of the season so far against a hapless Dees outfit. He had 33 touches, and he worked hard for them too with 15 of those contested and 6 of them clearances. He was also damaging in attack, booting 3 goals in a complete performance.
Scott Thompson (Adelaide) – The champion Crow was too tough in the middle for the Blues to handle. His 31 touches included 15 contested possessions and 10 clearances. Too often he’s carried the Crows’ midfield alone but he must be loving playing with young guns Dangerfield and Sloane at the moment.
Scott Pendlebury (Collingwood) – Wouldn’t you love to have his footy skills? Although he doesn’t overpower or physically dominate he shares with Gary Ablett the ability to just play on another level to the surrounding players. He had 30 touches, 7 inside 50’s and 4 goals. All his goals were high quality and the one hard against the boundary 50 out was a beauty to watch from the stands.
Jonathon Brown (Brisbane) – Surprisingly playing second fiddle in the forward line to Merret, Brown had a day out himself. He made the most of abundant supply to Brisbane’s forward line and was able to outpoint opponent Phil Davis on many occasions. He finished with 23 touches, 16 marks and 5 goals.
Daniel Merret – Merret has further proven his ability to kick goals with his best attacking performance yet. In the first quarter he was superman and had 5 goals by the early break. Surprisingly Voss shifted him to defence for large periods of the game but he still finished with 7 goals and 23 touches. Surely he will start spending more time in the forward line?
Tom Rockliff (Brisbane) – Although he racked it up a bit in junk time against GWS it’s hard to play down a 36 disposal 3 goal game. He was the most damaging midfielder of the game and has been selected on a forward flank for team balance here.
Drew Petrie (North Melbourne) – Although he didn’t dominate his effort was there all day and he took the most of his opportunities to kick 5 goals from 7 kicks.
Jay Schulz (Port Adelaide) – Port surely wouldn’t have won without him. His four goals in the final term were the spark they needed to edge past a fading Roos. He only had 11 kicks but that’s all he needed for 7 goals straight and it was important he stood up while Butcher was down. His performances this year demand respect.
Cyril Rioli (Hawthorn) – Special Cyril was up and about for the Indigenous Round. In the first half he played a lively forward line role, kicking 2 goals and tormenting Freo’s defenders as they tried to clear from defensive 50 (8 tackles). He slowed down a little in the second half when he moved into the midfield but Freo was already beaten.
Clinton Young (Hawthorn) – Playing in his 100th game, he used his long kicking well to set up play and had a huge 11 inside 50’s amongst 25 disposals. He’s pretty stiff to be on the bench in a good week for mid-fielders.
Ryan Griffen (Western Bulldogs) – Griffen celebrated his 150th game in style with another elite performance. He had 26 possessions, 6 clearances and 7 tackles. He was the best midfielder on the ground and got chaired of the ground for his efforts.
Steele Sidebottom (Collingwood) – Asked publicly to step up in Luke Ball’s absence, Sidebottom has improved again this year. He is now in the best handful of Pies players and Friday night against the Cats was no exception. He had 38 touches and 139 Dream Team points.
Zephaniah Skinner (Western Bulldogs) – In a week with no stand-out ‘super sub’ Skinner gets it for his awesome spoil, fumble, second effort, gather and bomb off a step from outside fifty for a goal in the last quarter against the Suns.