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The Geelong Cats welcome back Patrick Dangerfield and a host of other stars for their trip to the city of churches to battle the Port Adelaide Power. Tune into Thursday night footy’s return right here on The Roar with live scores from 7:40pm (AEST).
After weeks of demand, the Thursday night slot is back for AFL fans to enjoy, for the first time since Round 15. Featuring two serious premiership contenders, it should be a doozy, too.
Dangerfield is back for just his third match of the season, the 2016 Brownlow Medallist having endured a torrid campaign through both suspension and injury. With Mitch Duncan and Mark Blicavs also returning, who missed the Cats’ Round 11 win over Collingwood with concussion and a calf injury respectively, the Cats are nearing full strength for the first time this year.
Last year’s runners-up haven’t set the world on fire in 2021, but they still sit comfortably in third with an 8-3 record. Victory tonight would see them leap a game and percentage clear of the fourth-placed Brisbane, while remaining apace with ladder-leaders Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs.
The Power are also 8-3, but like the Cats, have had questions raised over their status as competition heavyweights. Of their three losses, they’ve been thumped by the Lions and West Coast on the road, as well as a far more concerning defeat to the Bulldogs at their Adelaide Oval fortress.
Ken Hinkley will lose goalsneak Orazio Fantasia for this match after suffering a knee injury that will keep him out for the next month. His absence places more pressure on champion veteran Robbie Gray to keep delivering the goods near the big sticks.
The Cats are infamous for their poor record coming off a week’s break under Brad Scott – they are 2-12 playing off a bye since 2012. Heading into this match having had to hard quarantine for the better part of a week, they have a challenge ahead of them to flip the script.
Opening bounce: 7:40pm (AEST)
Venue: Adelaide Oval
TV: Fox Footy, Channel Seven (VIC/TAS/SA/NT), 7mate (NSW/QLD/WA)
Live stream: Kayo Sports, Foxtel Now, Foxtel Go
Betting: Power $1.95, Cats $1.89 (odds via PlayUp)
Port Adelaide Power
B: 3 Ryan Burton, 12 Trent McKenzie, 21 Aliir Aliir
HB: 34 Lachie Jones, 1 Tom Jonas (c), 33 Darcy Byrne-Jones
C: 5 Dan Houston, 16 Ollie Wines, 15 Karl Amon
HF: 19 Mitch Georgiades, 4 Todd Marshall, 6 Steven Motlop
F: 20 Connor Rozee, 22 Charlie Dixon, 9 Robbie Gray
FOLL: 38 Peter Ladhams, 10 Travis Boak, 2 Sam Powell-Pepper
INT: 14 Miles Bergman, 24 Kane Farrell, 26 Riley Bonner, 28 Willem Drew
EMG: 27 Joel Garner, 36 Boyd Woodcock, 40 Jarrod Lienert, 45 Martin Frederick
IN: Miles Bergman (R11 medical sub)
OUT: Orazio Fantasia
B: 24 Jed Bews, 25 Lachie Henderson, 38 Jack Henry
HB: 8 Jake Kolodjashnij, 44 Tom Stewart, 2 Zach Tuohy
C: 7 Isaac Smith, 35 Patrick Dangerfield, 27 Sam Menegola
HF: 3 Brandan Parfitt, 5 Jeremy Cameron, 30 Tom Atkins
F: 23 Gary Rohan, 26 Tom Hawkins, 40 Luke Dahlhaus
FOLL: 17 Esava Ratugolea, 22 Mitch Duncan, 14 Joel Selwood (c)
INT: 4 Shaun Higgins, 42 Mark O’Connor, 45 Brad Close, 46 Mark Blicavs
EMG: 1 Rhys Stanley, 9 Max Holmes, 19 Quinton Narkle, 39 Zach Guthrie
IN: Mark Blicavs, Mark O’Connor, Patrick Dangerfield, Mitch Duncan
OUT: Max Holmes, Quinton Narkle, Rhys Stanley, Zach Guthrie, Jordan Clark (R11 medical sub)