Game Day Round 4, 2019: St.Kilda v Hawthorn *BLUE RIBBON CUP*

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George

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Preview
St.Kilda v Hawthorn






St.Kilda will rue missed chances in front of goal as they came back from Perth on Sunday night with their first loss of the year, falling to the Dockers by 5 points after trailing by as many as 31 in the first half.

As for the Hawks, they should be pleased with their effort given they trailed North Melbourne midway through the 2nd quarter to come away with a 16 point win & their second for the season.


Let’s have a look at possible best 22s:

St.Kilda Best 22
B:
Jimmy Webster, Nathan Brown, Shane Savage
HB: Jack Newnes, Josh Battle, Daniel McKenzie
C: Jarryn Geary, Sebastian Ross, Jack Billings
HF: Blake Acres, Josh Bruce, Matthew Parker
F: Jack Lonie, Tim Membrey, Jade Gresham
Foll: Rowan Marshall, Jack Steele, Jack Sinclair
I/C: Luke Dunstan, Hunter Clark, Nick Hind, Callum Wilkie

Hawthorn Best 22
B:
Blake Hardwick, James Frawley, Jarman Impey
HB: Harry Morrison, James Sicily, Ben Stratton
C: Isaac Smith, David Mirra, Ricky Henderson
HF: Tom Scully, Jarryd Roughead, Chad Wingard
F: Luke Breust, Jack Gunston, Paul Puopolo
Foll: Ben McEvoy, James Worpel, Jaeger O'Meara
I/C: Jonathon Ceglar, Jack Scrimshaw, Dylan Moore, James Cousins



Medical Room




For the Saints, key defender Nathan Brown was taken from the ground after being caught high by Jesse Hogan, spending 20 minutes on the sidelines and passing concussion testing before returning.

As for the Hawks, there were a few concerns, but all returned. In the second term, Jaeger O'Meara went down to the rooms with a left hip issue, Luke Breust seemed troubled by a lower back problem and spent time on the stationary bike and Jarman Impey seemed to have a sore midriff. Blake Hardwick had his lower back worked on in the third term.





Preview




St.Kilda & Hawthorn will battle it out at Marvel Stadium this Sunday afternoon for the Blue Ribbon Cup - a cup in memory of Victoria Police Sergeant Gary Silk and Senior Constable Rodney Miller who were murdered in Cochranes Road, Moorabbin in 1998.

We have played off for the Blue Ribbon Cup against Hawthorn since 1999. The cup is dedicated to those who have lost their lives while on duty. The best player from the match receives the Silk-Miller Medal. Both men were passionate supporters of the sport. This annual game ensures that the legacy of the two men continues to live on in the lives of Victorians.






St.Kilda had just come off a convincing win against Essendon in Round 2 and were full of confidence heading to Perth to face the Dockers in their first interstate trip of the season. After falling behind by 31 points in the 2nd term, St.Kilda clawed their way back into the contest to only trail by five points at the main break. After a sickening head clash between Nathan Fyfe and Josh Battle which left Fyfe out for the remainder of the game, it was as close as the Saints would get, inaccurate kicking costing St.Kilda who fell by five points for their first loss of the year.

Whilst it's not great to lose, plenty of positives can be taken from the performance for a side that is looking drastically different than they did last season.

Jack Billings continues his stellar start to the year, the crafty left footer amassing 32 possessions, 5 marks and 2 goals in a best on ground display for the Saints.


Other notable performances included Rowan Marshall. With 16 disposals, 5 marks, 6 tackles and 40 hit-outs, Ro is quickly becoming St.Kilda's number one ruckman.

Midfielder Jack Steele continues his strong start to the year, after given the tagging role on superstar Nathan Fyfe, Steeley racked up 22 touches of his own to go along with 8 marks and 8 tackles. Jarryn Geary, Jack Newnes, Jade Gresham and Tim Membrey were also strong performers.


Hawthorn had to get themselves back onto the winners list after a disappointing fade-out to the Western Bulldogs, allowing the Dogs to come from 30 points down in the last quarter and win the game. After a strong showing against the Crows in Adelaide in Round 1, Hawthorn were back to what we can expect from them in 2019, running away with the game after half time and beating North Melbourne by a comfortable 16 points. With their second win of the year, the Hawks sit just inside the eight and will look to solidify that position on Sunday afternoon.

Hawthorn senior coach Alastair Clarkson will coach his 333rd game for Hawthorn this Sunday, and in doing so goes past legendary St.Kilda premiership coach Allan Jeans for most games coached at the one club.

As for the players - we can't go past Jaeger O'Meara's game on the weekend, the classy midfielder finished with 32 disposals, 3 marks and a whopping 12 tackles to be adjudged Hawthorn's best on the day.

Chad Wingard was another for the Hawks who bobbed up late, kicking 3 goals and showing how dangerous of a small forward he can be.




Potential changes



Former Essendon VFL mature age player Nick Hind continues his quest for an AFL debut after continuing his good form in the early stages of the year, with the speedy half back kicking 2 goals and showing plenty of promising signs to be in contention for Sunday afternoon.

Other notable inclusions could be Billy Longer (47 hit-outs), Ben Long & Ed Phillips (17 disposals & 5 tackles apiece), Jonathon Marsh & Robbie Young.



Key Match-Ups



Jaeger O'Meara
With Tom Mitchell set to miss the entire 2019 campaign, the Hawks turn to Jaeger O'Meara as their go-to man in the middie and he hasn't disappointed. O'Meara, finished with 32 possessions on the weekend and was clearly Hawthorn's best. Expect Jack Steele to get the tagging role on O'Meara on Sunday.

Chad Wingard
Electrifying small forward Chad Wingard is going to cause plenty of headaches for opposing teams this season, and if his 3 goals were anything to go by last weekend against North Melbourne, the Saints will need to watch him closely. If he manages to get off the leash, it will be incredibly difficult for St.Kilda to come away with the victory. St.Kilda skipper Jarryn Geary looks the obvious match-up.

Ben McEvoy
Former St.Kilda ruckman Ben McEvoy had a strong showing last weekend and ended with 16 possessions, 9 marks, 22 hit-outs and 2 goals. One of our areas of concern is our ruck position, and although Rowan Marshall has had a great start to the year, he will need to continue his impressive form if we are to stand a chance getting first use out of the middle. It will be interesting to see what happens at selection this Thursday night. Do the Saints go with the bigger bodied Longer in the ruck (who had 47 hit-outs in the VFL on the weekend)? Or do they stick with what has been working well so far?


Tip




I think this will be a really close one. St.Kilda have definitely improved under a new coaching setup and gameplan, so they can't be underestimated. Hawthorn had a great win against Adelaide to open their season, however a bad fade-out to the Bulldogs would be a huge concern despite their win against North Melbourne a week later.

I think Brett Ratten's inclusion to the coaching panel can't be looked over either, and with our aggression and added pace I think we will pip the Hawks right at the final stages. I wouldn't be surprised with either result, as it could go either way, but I believe the boys have done enough so far this year to suggest that they won't be pushovers anymore.


Saints by 14 points.

Thoughts?
 

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Verdun66

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Got to get a better start as Hawthorn can fade late. And we just have to take our chances. Was away last week but have watched the replay. Too many rushed shots, or not giving off to a better placed player. Anyway, been saying that for how many seasons now? We'll get it right at some point. This week would be good!

Marshall just needs to compete and our mids need to shark some of Big Boy's taps. Roma better around the ground, but BB drops forward to take contested grabs and kick accurately. And wonder how fit JOM is?

Big chance for Clark to cement a place. He flashed in and out of the Freo game. Did some nice things. More of them would be good.

Billings to kick 4 and BOG. Saints by 18.
 

tomjoad

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We need our forwards to make the most of their opportunities, and clean entry by those on ball. Big RoMa needs to play out of his skin. Big games for Parker & Kent...they're playing for their spots in the team with this game I reckon, particularly Kent who needs to pressure more. If the defence holds as firm as it has, and the above mentioned facets come to fruition, we win...but not by much.

go saints.
 

bird_man

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#11
They've got a terrific forward line. We really need to win the midfield battle today which will be tough without Stuv once again.

Looking forward to the O'Meara v Steele battle, could really shape the game. If we can get big games from Gresham and Billings we are a huge show.

We also need a big lift from Seb Ross. He's our senior midfielder but seems a shadow of his former self right now.
 

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A big day for our mids. I think Ross and Steele to have a big one. I think Blake's fitness after a couple of games might give him some confidence to play better in the middle so expect Blake to impress. Our backline is capable of keeping on top of the Hawks. The forward line just needs to click.

I'm predicting us to win by 40+
 

TheEnsign

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An interesting stat: Saints were undefeated in 2018 where I attended the game (went to Bris, first GWS game and second Melbourne game). Am getting along today for the first game of the year, so we're a dead cert ;)

On a more serious note, I think Hawks will win this. With Roughead back in, two ruckmen (with McEvoy being pretty mobile) and Poppy & Wingard roving the crumbs I reckon they'll just have too much firepower up forward.

Big day for Battle I reckon - we need that Rance type floating defender to replace Robbo in our structure and I reckon Battle is it. Can take a mark and an good field kick; I'm hoping to see a few intercept marks and surgical kicking from him off half back.

Even if we don't snag the win if Gresh, Billings, Steele and Marshall are all in our best then at least we're headed in the right direction.
 

lewdogs

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Big test for Marshall today. Up against both McEvoy and Ceglar, the Hawks will see this as a potential area to get on top. His biggest test yet.

Hopefully Ben Long comes back in fired up. The midfield is young and inexperienced, need to step up today.
 

BrutThough

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We are a good chance here. It's a big test for the backline but I back Webster and Savage in to make their opponents accountable. Im excited to see Battle take on Gunstan as he has been improving with every game.

I'm backing us to win by 17 points. Newnes best on with 32 disposals and 2 goals. Lonie and Long to kick 6 between them.
Parker to drive Sicily to give away 3 free kicks and 1 MRP reviewed incident.
 
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Premium

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#23
I’m nervous ( as always.)
These middle tier games are the ones we should not be losing if we are to rise up the ladder and we already dropped one last week.
And the Hawks are a middle tier team this season.
DS your right we have to beat Hawthorn if we are thinking of playing finals - this game is a must win , time for Gresham to strut his stuff in the middle and show why Dunstans been dropped.
Acres , Sinclair , Kent , Parker , Ross all have to lift on there last game.
 
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