NEAFL ROUND 18
Saturday, August 3, 2019
GIANTS (5th) v Sydney Swans (3rd)
GIANTS Stadium, 10:30am
The first match of Round 18 will see a highly anticipated local derby match-up between the GIANTS and the Sydney Swans. The Swans are fighting Southport for that second place on the ladder whilst the Giants will be looking for a spot inside the top four, to host a first-round finals game.
These two sides will know each other’s style of play, as this will be their fourth match up for the year. The Swans were able to come out on top in Round 1 and 4, while the GIANTS got the better of the Swans with a 25-point victory in Round 10.
The Swans would be content with their recent form, winning three from their past five matches that included a 32-point defeat to the undefeated Brisbane Lions last week. The Swans will be going into the game with some good form pushing the ladder leaders for three quarters.
The depleted GIANTS will want this game to be a valuable chance to grab the four points as they have conceded three big defeats in the past four weeks to Brisbane, Aspley and the Gold Coast as AFL-listed numbers dwindle. Heading into their last three games before finals, Adam Schneider’s team will be looking for some form for a big finals charge.
Round 10, 2019: GIANTS 15.11 (101) defeated Sydney 13.13
(91) at Blacktown International Sportspark.
Round 4, 2019: Sydney 13.19 (97) defeated GIANTS 7.10 (52) at Blacktown International Sportspark.
Round 1, 2019: Sydney 15.19 (109) defeated GIANTS 12.8 (80) at GIANTS Stadium.
1. It was a successful return from a knee injury for Sydney ruckman Sam Naismith last week. In limited minutes against Brisbane, Naismith was able to get 26 hit-outs, five tackles, two clearances and two goals. The Swans will be looking to increase the big man’s output as he pushes for a possible AFL return.
2. The GIANTS would have been disappointed with the loss against the Gold Coast last week, with only eight AFL listed players in the side they will be looking for some relief when several players could be in the mix for selection when making their return. They’ve made a host of changes as they look to take on a Swans side also battling some unavailability issues of their own.
3. This clash is crucial in terms of ladder positions heading into the finals. Sydney is a game clear in third place and trail Southport by eight points, but the Sharks have a bye to come in the run home. A win for the Swans will see them stay in the mix for the top two and further cement a place in the top four, but a loss could see them drop to fourth if Aspley beat Canberra. The GIANTS, meanwhile, are a mathematical chance of falling outside the top six if they continue to lose. They are two games clear in fifth but have a bye to come. A win here would keep some breathing space over Sydney Uni and Canberra.
Swans Academy member Braeden Campbell made his NEAFL debut last week and showed plenty of potential with two goals alongside 13 disposals and six tackles. The 17-year-old will have another opportunity to shine this week.
STATS THAT MATTER
The Sydney Swans are the best tacking team in the competition, ranked No.1 with an average of 68.9 per game. This is largely due to the excellent work of midfielder Sam Wicks, who is the No.1 ranked player for tackles with a total of 102, and an average of 7.3 per game.
Swans by 20 points.
Don’t forget to download our free NEAFL App, featuring live Champion Data stats, player bios and more! Available now from the Google Play and Apple stores.
Have your say! Follow the NEAFL on Twitter (@neaflofficial), Instagram (@neaflofficial) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/neaflofficial).
The Official NEAFL App contains all the latest news and videos from the League and around the clubs. Keep up to date with live scores and live streaming, plus team and player stats as they happen throughout the game.