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Gold Coast Suns meet GWS Giants at Metricon Stadium today with potentially the Brownlow medal, Coleman medal, wooden spoon and Kevin Sheedy’s legacy at stake (am I selling the game well or what?). Join us today from 1.10pm AEST for live scores and commentary.
It’s the battle of the babies, the little-league grand final, the expansion-team exhibition.
These teams might be down the wrong end of the ladder, but there’ll be no tanking in this one.
Both sides have just about overdosed on high draft picks the last few years, and have very real reasons to win today anyway.
For the Suns, a loss to the Giants would be about as humiliating as getting beaten up by your little brother.
The men from the Sunshine Strip were top eight contenders earlier this year, but they’ve had a dramatic fall from grace with just two wins from their final ten games.
A loss here wouldn’t look good on Guy McKenna’s coaching CV, that’s for sure.
GWS on the other hand will be looking to help score their young superstar Jeremy Cameron a Coleman Medal, but more importantly send off a certain Kevin Sheedy – maybe you’ve heard of him – with an against-the-odds victory.
Considering Sheedy’s decorated career, he deserves a better effort than the 121-point shellacking against Richmond last week.
To put that loss into context, it was Richmond’s first win by over a hundred points since they toppled mighty Fitzroy back in 1995.
There’s one other carrot dangling in front of GWS today – win this, they leapfrog Melbourne and avoid back-to-back wooden spoons (assuming the Dees lose to the Bulldogs).
Sure, that means the Giants miss out on the number one pick in the draft, but hey, they don’t need Tom Boyd anyway, what with Cameron, Patton and possibly Lance Franklin clogging up their forward line next year.
Both sides have rung in plenty of changes, perhaps under the mistaken impression they need to rest key players for finals next week.
Jarrod Harbrow, Maverick Weller, Joel Wilkinson, Sam Day and Sebastian Tape come in for the Suns, who lose Greg Broughton (Achilles), Leigh Osborne (calf), Steven May (suspension), Daniel Gorringe (abdominal) and Jackson Allen (omitted).
Meanwhile, GWS bring in Stephen Gilham, Matthew Buntine, Shaun Edwards, Mark Whiley, Lachie Whitfield and James Stewart, and dropping Dean Brogan (retired), Callan Ward (hip), Adam Treloar (ankle), Tomas Bugg (omitted), Nathan Wilson (quad) and Nicholas Haynes (omitted).
The biggest change there is GWS losing inspirational leader Callan Ward, but then again the Gold Coast Suns might as well have been without theirs lately with Gary Ablett a mere shadow of his former self the last few weeks.
Suns fans (and fantasy coaches) will be praying like mad that the Son of God returns from his three matches in the wilderness – if nothing else,
my Dreamteam grand final a Brownlow medal could be at stake.
The Suns at their home fortress go in favourites, but neutral fans will surely will be rooting for the underdogs in this one – after all, a victory here will be the last chance for Kevin Sheedy to do a Cossack dance to the Giants wonderfully Russian-sounding club song.