WHERE AND WHEN: MCG, Sunday, July 22, 3.15pm
In a around where all the focus has been placed on the big games between the top eight teams, this important clash has received little attention. North Melbourne and Richmond will face off in a game that will have a big impact on who will be contending in the finals come September.
A win to the Kangaroos could see them enter the top eight while the Tigers season would be over. If Richmond get up they will keep their slim finals hopes alive and make the task that much more difficult for North.
North Melbourne have had the perfect lead up to this game, they are coming off an eight day break after belting Carlton by 53 points. They have won four of the last five and are starting to look like a top eight team.
Richmond on the other hand have disappointed again. Last week’s loss to the Gold Coast was not only deplorable but damaging. With a finals spot on the line they capitulated to side which had not won a game in 2012. The loss was catastrophic, but today’s game presents a chance for some slight retribution.
Players To Watch
Martin has been out for two weeks because of a misdemeanour, word from inside the club is that the suspension has had a huge effect on him and he is desperate to make amends. Martin can be a match winner and with this extra incentive he is set for a big performance.
Petrie had a day out last week kicking seven goals and it could have been more if he wasn’t subbed out. He may be in for another big haul this week as the Tiger’s defence is lacking height and will be stretched thin on the Roo’s tall forward line. This should give Petrie plenty of one on one opportunities where his contested marking will shine.
Richmond are hurting after last week and are desperate to bounce back. This can be seen with the big inclusions of Ivan Maric and Dustin Martin, however this will not be enough for the Tigers.
North Melbourne have finally clicked into gear and are playing impressive football. Their tall forward line will cause headaches and their midfield is getting better each week. The Kangaroos will be too strong and will end the Tigers finals dreams.
North Melbourne by 34pts
B: Steven Morris, Alex Rance, Chris Newman
HB: Bachar Houli, Kelvin Moore, Matt Dea
C: Shaun Grigg, Trent Cotchin, Brett Deledio
HF: Dustin Martin, Shane Edwards, Daniel Jackson
F: Luke McGuane, Jack Riewoldt, Robin Nahas
Foll: Ivan Maric, Reece Conca, Shane Tuck
I/C: Jayden Post, Brandon Ellis, Brett O’Hanlon, Addam Maric
Emg: Angus Graham, Jeromey Webberley, Brad Miller
In: Daniel Jackson, Jayden Post, Dustin Martin, Ivan Maric
Out: Angus Graham, Jeromey Webberley, Jake Batchelor, Tom Derickx
B: Scott McMahon, Scott Thompson, Michael Firrito
HB: Shaun Atley, Nathan Grima, Jamie Macmillan
C: Ryan Bastinac, Daniel Wells, Sam Gibson
HF: Lindsay Thomas, Robert Tarrant, Samuel Wright
F: Lachlan Hansen, Drew Petrie, Kieran Harper
Foll: Todd Goldstein, Andrew Swallow, Brent Harvey
I/C: Leigh Adams, Matt Campbell, Liam Anthony, Ben Cunnington
Emg: Levi Greenwood, Cruize Garlett, Cameron Pedersen
In: Ben Cunnington
Out: Jack Ziebell