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The GWS Giants have advanced to a preliminary final against Collingwood next with following a three-point win over the Brisbane Lions at the Gabba.
Brisbane Lions 11.14.80
GWS Giants 12.11.83
The Brisbane Lions look to remain in touch for the Grand Final this Saturday when they come up against a resurging GWS Giants at the Gabba. Join The Roar for live scores and coverage from 7:25pm (AEST).
The expectations were high for Brisbane when they hosted the Richmond Tigers at their supposed fortress last weekend, with progression to the Preliminary-finals seeming more than a likelihood.
Despite earning big wins over Semi-final counterparts, West Coast and Geelong, at home earlier this season, Brisbane performed much worse at home against the Tigers, dropping from a 27-point loss at the MCG to 47 at home.
A major positive over the last fortnight has been Lachie Neale’s performances against the Tigers.
In Round 23, the Brownlow fancy managed a massive 51 disposals, 25 contested possessions, 14 clearances and 162 Fantasy Points, before reaching 37 disposals, two goals, 10 clearances and 123 Fantasy points in last Saturday’s loss.
A lot of talk has also surrounded Charlie Cameron, with the All-Australian forward sitting as the fourth (fifth overall) highest goal-kicker remaining in finals and the only genuine small-forward placing inside the top-10.
Cameron has struggled over the last two weeks with the added attention from Richmond’s, Dylan Grimes, only managing three goals and two behinds.
Luke Hodge has garnered similar attention, with the four-time Premiership player entering yet another finals series.
Last week, GWS pulled off a shock, 58-point win against the Western Bulldogs.
Despite an unimpressive close to the season, the Giants have resurged into finals with a physical, high-pressure brand of footy.
Lachie Whitfield was at his usual best in the win, recording 32 disposals, six tackles, seven inside 50s and 131 Fantasy points.
A slow first-half didn’t stop 2019 Coleman medallist, Jeremy Cameron, from having an impact, amassing 25 disposals, two goals, eight marks and 120 Fantasy points.
Of their last five meetings with the Lions, GWS have recorded four wins, though in Round 16 conceded a big loss at home against the redefined Queensland outfit.
Toby Greene managed to escape suspension last week after a physical exchange with Bulldog Marcus Bontempelli; receiving a $7,500 fine as he gets set to line-up this week.
Despite only playing 12 games this year, Josh Kelly remains a huge main-stay in the GWS line-up.
The 24-year-old managed an impressive 22 disposals, three goals and eight score involvements in an impressive return to finals, having missed the short-lived 2018 campaign with an early knee injury against the Swans.
This week, Adam Tomlinson joins the side for Brett Deledio (calf), while Nick Robertson steps in for Brisbane in place of Mitch Robertson (hamstring).
They didn’t finish second for nothing.
Brisbane Lions by 15 points.
First bounce: 7:25pm (AEST)
Venue: Gabba, Brisbane
Watch: Channel 7, Kayo Sports, Fox Footy 504
B: L. Hodge, H. Andrews, M. Adams
HB: A. Witherden, D. Gardiner, D. Rich
C: D. Zorko, J. Berry, Z. Bailey
HF: C. Cameron, E. Hipwood, H. McCluggage
F: O. McInerney, D. McStay, C. Rayner
FOLL: S. Martin, L. Neale, J. Lyons
I/C: A. Christensen, L. McCarthy, N. Robertson, N. Answerth
EMG: R. Bastinac, J. Walker, L. Taylor, R. Lester
B: P. Davis, A. Corr, A. Kennedy
HB: H. Shaw, S. Taylor, N. Haynes
C: L. Whitfield, J. Hopper, J. Finlayson
HF: J. Kelly, J. Cameron, B. Daniels
F: A. Tomlinson, H. Himmelberg, M.de Boer
FOLL: S. Mumford, H. Perryman, T. Greene
I/C: Z. Williams, T. Taranto, S. Reid, D. Lloyd
EMG: J. Hately, I. Cumming, L. Keeffe, I. Hill