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|13.8 (86)||Third Quarter [+]||7.5 (47)|
|9.6 (60)||Second Quarter [+]||5.3 (33)|
|5.1 (31)||First Quarter [+]||3.1 (19)|
Top spot is there for the taking for the Western Bulldogs as the end of Round 16 looms: they just have to get past the lowly North Melbourne Kangaroos to reclaim the mountaintop. Tune into events from Marvel Stadium with live scores on The Roar from 4:40pm (AEST).
Melbourne’s upset loss to GWS means the Bulldogs are assured of top spot with a victory over the Kangaroos. Their stunning thrashing of the same team back in Round 3, a Good Friday beatdown to the tune of 128 points, will give Luke Beveridge and his team ample confidence of doing it again.
The Dogs’ status as heavyweights fluctuates from week to week, but time and again this season, they have beaten up on the worst sides in the competition. They’ve chalked up the year’s only two 100+-point margins, the other to the Saints in Round 10; and their midfield looks to have officially transitioned from ’emerging’ to ‘arrived’.
It’s a massive day for Lewis Young. The intercepting Dog has been a fringe player since his debut back in 2017, but looks likely to get an extended run in the seniors following an arm injury to key back Ryan Gardner. Do his job well, and Young could well become a staple in the Bulldogs’ unexpectedly miserly defence for the remainder of the season.
For the Roos, mission number one is to stop Josh Bruce, who bagged 10 goals on them back in Round 3. Robbie Tarrant’s return to the backline should help to some extent with that. Mission number two is to prevent the Bulldogs’ much-celebrated midfield from having a free reign around the ground: if Marcus Bontempelli, Jack Macrae and Tom Liberatore get going, David Noble may be powerless to stop the rot.
However, North, while still last on the ladder, have improved considerably since last time these two sides met, even heading in off the back of a win over Gold Coast in Tasmania. The Dogs can’t afford to expect an armchair ride, or the Shinboners will make them pay.
B: 35 Caleb Daniel, 42 Alex Keath, 34 Bailey Williams
HB: 15 Taylor Duryea, 12 Zaine Cordy, 31 Bailey Dale
C: 20 Ed Richards, 21 Tom Liberatore, 6 Bailey Smith
HF: 39 Jason Johannisen, 33 Aaron Naughton, 19 Cody Weightman
F: 28 Anthony Scott, 17 Josh Bruce, 7 Lachie Hunter
FOLL: 44 Tim English, 11 Jack Macrae, 4 Marcus Bontempelli (c)
INT: 2 Lewis Young, 16 Toby McLean, 29 Mitch Hannan, 38 Riley Garcia
EMG: 3 Mitch Wallis, 13 Josh Schache, 27 Patrick Lipinski, 41 Jordon Sweet
IN: Lewis Young
OUT: Ryan Gardner
B: 19 Josh Walker, 23 Ben McKay, 18 Shaun Atley
HB: 7 Jack Ziebell (c), 25 Robbie Tarrant, 43 Aaron Hall
C: 14 Trent Dumont, 10 Ben Cunnington, 11 Luke McDonald
HF: 12 Jy Simpkin, 20 Nick Larkey, 5 Curtis Taylor
F: 1 Jack Mahony, 2 Jaidyn Stephenson, 44 Cameron Zurhaar
FOL: 22 Todd Goldstein, 9 Luke Davies-Uniacke, 26 Tarryn Thomas
I/C: 28 Kayne Turner, 29 Will Phillips, 37 Kyron Hayden, 38 Tristan Xerri
EMG: 8 Bailey Scott, 13 Jared Polec, 40 Eddie Ford, 42 Tom Campbell
IN: Kyron Hayden
OUT: Lachie Young