When: Saturday March 29, 4:40PM
Where: ANZ Stadium
GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY
GWS Board Gameday Thread
FB: Adam Kennedy, Tim Mohr, Stephen Gilham
HB: Tomas Bugg, Phil Davis, Curtly Hampton
C: Will Hoskin-Elliott, Callan Ward, Lachie Whitfield
HF: Stephen Coniglio, Jeremy Cameron, Tom Scully
FF: Liam Sumner, Jonathon Patton, Devon Smith
R: Jonathan Giles, Adam Treloar, Toby Greene
I/C: Taylor Adams, Dean Brogan, Lachie Plowman, Dylan Shiel
EMG: Sam Frost, Rhys Palmer, Nathan Wilson
NEW: Lachie Whitfield, Lachie Plowman
Swans Board Gameday Thread
FB: Rhyce Shaw, Heath Grundy, Nick Smith
HB: Martin Mattner, Ted Richards, Nick Malceski
C: Ben McGlynn, Daniel Hannebery, Lewis Jetta
HF: Kieren Jack, Sam Reid, Ryan O’Keefe
FF: Mike Pyke, Adam Goodes, Jude Bolton
R: Shane Mumford, Josh Kennedy, Jarrad McVeigh
I/C: Tony Armstrong, Dane Rampe, Luke Parker, Lewis Roberts-Thomson
EMG: Andrejs Everitt, Jed Lamb, Jesse White
NEW: Dane Rampe
Forecast: Mostly sunny, 25 degrees
Sportsbet: Greater Western Sydney $9.00, Sydney $1.06
Greater Western Sydney are turning two years old in this clash and face a stiff birthday as they face up against older brother and reigning premiers the Sydney Swans. In the newly dubbed ‘Battle of the Bridge’, the Swans are warm favourites, the shortest of Round 1, but are carrying plenty of underdone players into this clash, including Nick Smith, Martin Mattner and Shane Mumford. Missing from the premiership team of last year is Mitch Morton, Craig Bird and Alex Johnson, with Tony Armstrong, Ben McGlynn and rookie Dane Rampe coming into the side. The Swans put in the usual effort in the NAB Cup, while the Giants were impressive at times, giving every indication that majority of their young squad will be immune from second-year blues.
The Giants held the first three selections in the National Draft last season, and two of them will take to the field in their first ever AFL game on Saturday night. Number one pick Lachie Whitfield is primed to hit the ground running, while talented defender Lachie Plowman, who was taken at selection number three, will also feature. The man in the middle, Jono O’Rourke, is still suffering from an injury that he sustained in the NAB Cup, while key position players Kristian Jaksch and Aidan Corr were not considered for selection. GWS will have a total of three number one draft picks on Saturday night, with Tom Scully, Jon Patton and Whitfield playing together for the first time. Combined with exciting youngsters in Stephen Coniglio, Liam Sumner, Jeremy Cameron, Will Hoskin-Elliott and Toby Greene, it is clear why the rest of the competition fears what the Giants will be in a few seasons’ time.
Another season, another dollar
The Swans will be fielding the usual experienced line-up, with veterans Adam Goodes and Jude Bolton starting their 15th campaign of AFL, and elder statesmen Lewis Roberts-Thomson, Ryan O’Keefe, Rhyce Shaw, Ted Richards and Jarrad McVeigh all gearing up for another tilt at the flag. With some of the Sydney players having two premiership medals from their career, will the hunger burn the same as previous years? Or will they need to rely on the younger brigade of Josh Kennedy, Kieren Jack, Dan Hannebery and Lewis Jetta, who’s thirst for another Grand Final win will be as strong as ever you would imagine.
He was one of the more valuable cash-cows last season, but Adam Treloar is still a solid selection in your fantasy side. At $455,000, he is one of the most expensive players at his age. He averaged just under 90 points from three full-length NAB Cup games, which is higher than his average from last season.
Formally a much-maligned player, Nick Malceski shot to Sydney stardom with his match-winning role in the 2012 Grand Final with two outstanding snap goals to bookend the game. He has carried that confidence into the pre-season, averaging 100 SuperCoach points from two normal NAB Cup games. At $404,100, he is a point of difference and could be an inspired pick.
The AFL and Kevin Sheedy have worked hard to build up the rivalry between these two sides, but one would suggest that it will take some time until it is held in the same regard as the two WA and SA rivalries. It wasn’t helped by Sydney’s dominance over the Giants in their inaugural season, winning two games by 63 and 94 points.
Since 2000 (yeah yeah I know), Greater Western Sydney and Sydney have played two times. From left to right, this is the result of each game since the start of the millenium.
S – S
Greater Western Sydney: 0/2
You would think that Sydney will take care of this clash, but the youth and excitement around the Giants is infectious. You can tell that they are primed to make a statement in their second year, and I think, given their contrasting pre-season campaigns, this one will be closer than most think. Still tipping the SYDNEY SWANS.
First goalkicker: Jonathon Patton.