Round 2 of the Hard Yakka / Totally Workwear VFL season again produces Friday to Sunday fixtures – Jack Jovanovski previews a big second round of VFL action:
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Collingwood vs. Western Bulldogs:
Collingwood will hope to produce a better four-quarter effort in Round 2, after their narrow win against Coburg last week. A six-goal-to-three opening quarter from the Lions meant Collingwood were immediately on the back foot, but the Magpies scored eight goals to Coburg’s five from quarter time, securing their first win of the season. This week, they face a Bulldogs outfit which was dominant from the outset in Round 1, dismantling Sandringham by 43 points.
Collingwood’s Tyson Goldsack will be better for the Round 1 run, after he managed to record six possessions, two marks and a tackle. Magpie tall forward Ben Reid will hope to build on his authoritative Round 1 performance, throughout which he scored three goals, collected 20 disposals and took an astounding 12 marks. The Bulldogs will welcome back Tom Boyd, who will look to work into the forwardline with new recruit Ryan Gardner, who kicked four goals in Round 1.
Richmond vs. Port Melbourne – video stream game / SEN 2:
The Tigers, looking to build off their resilient Round 1 showing when they defeated the Cats in Geelong, host Port Melbourne in their first home game of the 2019 season. The Borough fell narrowly to arch-rivals Williamstown last week, and will look to avenge that loss on Saturday at the Swinburne Centre.
Richmond were last week boosted by the efforts of returning AFL-listed player, Josh Caddy (17 disposals, two marks), as well as the emergence of second-year AFL-listed player Patrick Naish (23 possessions, four marks). Meanwhile, the Tigers will try to compensate for the loss of AFL-listed Jack Ross, as he will debut for Richmond’s AFL team against Port Adelaide on Saturday afternoon. Port Melbourne will hope Eli Templeton (26 disposals, eight marks, one goal) can continue his good Round 1 form this week, while Collingwood recruit Jarryd Blair is set to make his Borough debut.
Casey vs. North Melbourne – Casey Radio:
Casey’s disappointing Round 1 performance in the 2018 grand final rematch will give them plenty of motivation when they host North Melbourne in their first home game of the 2019 season. Casey’s bright spot last Sunday was Corey Maynard (27 disposals, three marks, two tackles) and the debut of ruck Liam Buxton.
North Melbourne also suffered a disappointing first round defeat, to former AFL-affiliated Werribee by 39 points at Avalon Airport Oval. Their best performers were Nathan Hrovat (26 possessions, seven marks, seven tackles and a goal) and Nick Larkey (three goals, seven marks and 17 hit-outs), whilst new captain Brendan Whitecross (15 disposals) and Declan Watson (nine possessions) will hope to help their side improve in Round 2.
Werribee vs. Coburg – Casey Radio:
The Tigers will look to continue their dominant Round 1 form when they host Coburg in Round 2. Werribee disposed of North Melbourne last week, in Mark Williams’ Tigers coaching debut. The Lions, however, will be encouraged by their valiant Round 1 performance, during which they led for three quarters but fell narrowly by three points to Collingwood.
Matt Hanson (31 disposals, seven tackles, four marks) and Michael Barlow (32 possessions, four marks, and two tackles) were among the Tigers’ prolific performers, but Barlow will be missing this week through injury. For Coburg, ruckman Adam Swierzbiolek (15 disposals, five marks and 19 hit-outs) was best afield.
Sandringham vs. Box Hill Hawks – Channel 7:
Sandringham will host reigning Premiers Box Hill in the first AFL/VFL curtain raiser of the 2019 season, coming off a disappointing opening night defeat to Footscray last week. The Hawks, meanwhile, looked dangerous in their repeat of Casey in the 2018 grand final rematch.
Harrison Jones (17 disposals, six marks and eight tackles) and Marc Pittonet (four marks, three tackles and 43 hit-outs) will look to build on their strong Round 1 performances. Meanwhile, new recruit Nathan Mullenger-McHugh (eight disposals and six marks) was effective in his Box Hill debut. Comparatively, Sandringham’s best Round 1 performers were captain Brede Seccull (25 disposals, two goals and six tackles) and David Armitage (20 possessions and ten tackles).
Geelong vs. Northern Blues – go.Footy Live:
The Northern Blues will travel to the Cattery in Round 2, in the first game of their 2019 campaign. The Blues had the bye in Round 1, and will be keen to unveil new local recruit Frank Anderson (South Croydon) as well as Carlton draftees Alex Fasolo, Liam Stocker and Hugh Goddard.
Geelong fell away in the final term against Richmond last week, but have their second chance at home to start the season. Jordan Keras was the leading ball winner in Round 1 with 20 disposals, while the Cats had no shortage of talls with Ryan Abbott, Darcy Fort and Zac Clarke combining for 36 hit-outs against the Tigers.
Frankston vs. Williamstown – Casey Radio:
Frankston will stay at home in Round 2, when they host the formidable Williamstown at SkyBus Stadium. Coming off a Bomber barrage in Round 1, the Dolphins will need to improve vastly in order to challenge the in-form Seagulls.
Williamstown showed no signs of slowing down in 2019, compensating well for the losses of Michael Gibbons (Carlton), Ben Cavarra (Western Bulldogs AFL), Lachie Schultz and Brett Bewley (Fremantle) in their Round 1 victory against rivals Port Melbourne. Nick Meese (13 disposals, eight tackles and 42 hit-outs) was best afield for the Seagulls last week, whilst Frankston’s best performers were new recruit Nathan Freeman (31 disposals and eight marks) and captain Josh Newman (23 possessions, six marks and five tackles).