Adelaide, with some recent gritty wins and their soft draw, look set to charge into top spot of the AFL ladder while the Lions are looking forward to their end of season trip.
The past two meetings of the two sides have been spit one apiece, the Lions beating the Crows by 40 at AAMI in round ten last year, while Adelaide beat Brisbane by five at the Gabba in round 20, their second win on the trot here.
The Crows have severely dented the top eight hopes of Essendon and Fremantle in recent weeks, and with Brisbane – who have lost five of their past six matches – then Melbourne and GWS to come look set to finish the AFL season top of the pops and earn a home final.
Brisbane were trounced by the Eagles in Perth in round 18, and have fared only marginally better against Richmond and Carlton in the last fortnight, and seem to be just limping to season’s end. Perhaps the only bright point of the northern visit of the Crows will be the fact Kurt Tippett shall be meeting with his management in Brisbane to decide his future Friday night, with the Lions believed to have offered him a huge contract.
The Crows look set to completely dominate the centre, they average ten more hit outs a game against the Lions in recent seasons, and with their ruckman Sam Jacobs in AFL leading form on the tap, has helped the Crows to number one clearance side in the competition. Scott Thompson has notched up 38 and 36 disposals and 3 votes last time the sides met, and even the suffocating tag of Andrew Raines may struggle to contain him.
Brisbane’s beleaguered defence will be bolstered by the return of Matt Maguire and Josh Drummond, but you feel even they won’t be able to stem the tide against a Crows midfield-and forward line in ominous form. Tippett will be tested after the Crows training on Friday to see if he has overcome his concussion.
Adelaide should win handsomely, but it’s one of those games where a team with nothing to play for can cause consternation for a side coasting and not paying due respect to their opponents.
Crows by 77.
BRISBANE LIONS V ADELAIDE
G – Sat Aug 18, 7:40pm
B: Ryan Harwood, Daniel Merrett, Joel Patfull
HB: Pearce Hanley, Matt Maguire, Jed Adcock
C: Rohan Bewick, Daniel Rich, James Polkinghorne
HF: Jack Redden, Jonathan Brown, Dayne Zorko
F: Tom Rockliff, Jordan Lisle, Joshua Green
Foll: Ben Hudson, Simon Black, Andrew Raines
I/C: Claye Beams, Ryan Lester, Elliot Yeo, Jack Crisp
Emg: Josh Drummond, Sam Docherty, Stephen Wrigley
In: Matt Maguire, Jack Crisp
Out: Todd Banfield, Stephen Wrigley
B: Sam Shaw, Ben Rutten, Michael Doughty
HB: Graham Johncock, Daniel Talia, Brent Reilly
C: David Mackay, Scott Thompson, Nathan van Berlo
HF: Richard Douglas, Taylor Walker, Jared Petrenko
F: Matthew Wright, Kurt Tippett, Ian Callinan
Foll: Sam Jacobs, Patrick Dangerfield, Rory Sloane
I/C: Chris Knights, Bernie Vince, Luke Brown, Josh Jenkins
Emg: Aidan Riley, Richard Tambling, Lewis Johnston
In: Chris Knights, Kurt Tippett, Luke Brown
Out: Aidan Riley, Brodie Smith (Calf), Lewis Johnston