St Kilda v Melbourne
Ethihad Stadium – Saturday 4:35 PM (AEDT)
PAST 3 GAMES
R17, 2016, St Kilda 15.20 (110) d Melbourne 11.8 (74) at Etihad Stadium
R6, 2016, St Kilda 20.15 (135) d Melbourne 15.6 (96) at Etihad Stadium
R17, 2015, St Kilda 12.11 (83) d Melbourne 6.10 (46) at the MCG
LAST TIME THEY MET
Veteran Saint Leigh Montagna has already been ruled for their round 1 match against the Demons with a calf strain restricting him from suiting up.
Former Bomber Jake Carlisle will finally get his chance to debut for the Saints. Carlisle was forced to sit out all of the 2016 season due to the ASADA suspension.
New recruits Jack Steele and Koby Stevens are likely inclusions into Alan Richardson’s best 22 after impressing over the pre-season.
Alan Richardson is expected to go with a two ruck attack against Max Gawn and the Demons. Tom Hickey is expected to get first crack at Gawn who earned the No.1 rucking manlte in 2016. Billy Longer is likely to find a position on the bench.
Nathan Brown showed solid form through the JLT Community series and is believed to earn a spot. He will help reinforce what had been an undersized defence.
Nathan Freeman will have to bide his time in reserve grade as he continues to recover from a knee and hip injury.
Nick Coughlan – Foot (Indefinite)
Leigh Montagna – Calf (Rounds 2-3)
Bailey Rice – Finger (Rounds 4-6)
Hugh Goddard – Achilles (Indefinite)
PREDICTED TEAM FOR ROUND 1
B: Jarryn Geary, Sean Dempster, Nathan Brown
HB: Shane Savage, Jake Carlisle, Jack Newnes
C: Seb Ross, Jack Steven, Jack Steele
HF: Mav Weller, Nick Riewoldt, Jack Billings
F: Tim Membrey, Josh Bruce, Paddy McCartin
FOLL: Tom Hickey, David Armitage, Blake Acres
I/C: Billy Longer, Koby Stevens, Dylan Roberton, Luke Dunstan
EMG: Jade Gresham, Jack Lonie, Sam Gilbert