As a Freo supporter, the thought of playing Adelaide without Nat Fyfe makes me feel a little bit sick…
The thought of playing ANY game without Nat Fyfe makes me feel a little bit sick actually. The Fremantle Dockers come into round 12 after a 61-point loss to Collingwood, and a real kick in the guts from the AFL tribunal. Skipper Nat Fyfe has been suspended for one week after a controversial bump on Pie Levi Greenwood, which not only sidelines Fyfe for this weekend, it also takes him out of the Brownlow Medal race. Fyfe was the heavy favourite to win the Brownlow and unfortunately, I think the umpires will try and save face now and will stop awarding him votes each week, no matter how well he plays. It’s a real shame. Despite the loss, Lachie Neale had an impressive game finishing with 29 disposals and two goals, while David Mundy and Darcy Tucker also finished with two goals each.
There’s another big out (literally) for the Fremantle Dockers this week with Aaron Sandilands set to miss Sunday’s game at Optus Stadium. It was originally thought that he would be fit to play after missing last week recovering from a concussion he received in round 10. However, Sandi has been withdrawn from the squad, along with Cam McCarthy who has been omitted. Hayden Ballantyne and Brandon Matera return to the side while Mitch Crowden, Ryan Nyhuis and Griffin Logue have been named as emergencies.
The Adelaide Crows have some big inclusions of their own. Crow’s captain Taylor Walker, Jordan Gallucci, Myles Poholke, Andy Otten, Patrick Wilson and Reilly O’Brien have all been named to head west. They have come in for Tom Lynch and Rory Laird who are both out with injury. Adelaide will be looking to bounce back against the Dockers, after their 16-point loss to the Giants at Adelaide Oval last week. Adelaide have won the past three Crows v Freo clashes, including handing Ross Lyon his first 100-point loss in his coaching career the last time these two clubs met. Superstar Eddie Betts is coming back into form for the Crows and the return of their skipper will boost their confidence further.
I feel like I say this every week, but it’s going to be a rough afternoon for the Fremantle Dockers. They will have the home ground advantage which may offer some encouragement, not enough to get over the line though I don’t think. There’s 95% of rain for Sunday, will that help or hinder the Dockers? We shall see…
I’m tipping the Adelaide Crows to beat the Fremantle Dockers by 20 points.
Photo cred: @FreoDockers