Get Off The Bench: GRAND FINAL
The week that we look forward to is here, the one where we can hold the Premiership Trophy aloft (or the Tit-Ed Cup) with pride! Oh and it is the one that our partners look forward to as they get to see us away from the computer on a weekend again after a long season of Dream Teaming! But do you have the bench cover to deal with the Rd24 carnage?
So you have made it to the final or you are just looking to make sure you end up with the best possible national ranking that you can. Well we all know that with the 8 locked away and all but 2 positions in the 8 virtually decided, it is time for coaches to get on the horn and get General Soreness down to the club to sort a few people out. What this means for us is that we either have to have a bench that is fairly well loaded with guys getting a game or have a couple of trades up our sleeves. In my case it is a little of each, a few guys playing and one trade left (my opponent this week already knows how many I have so it doesn’t matter…).
We already knew we would be without Stanton, Watson and Heppell this week, but then we get the news that Fyfe, Lower, Otten and Daisy Thomas would also be out so we were prepared for them to miss on Monday, but the real carnage comes on a Thursday night when we find out that Buddy, Hodgey, Birch, and Cyril are also going to miss!
These guys will get a DT Premiership Medal for you
Last time Andy Krakouer played the Cats he only scored 66pts, his form of late has been a touch patchy, with a 108, 86, 55, miss with injury and a 96. So he has the potential to get a good score and I think he will, but he can burn you too.
Matty Wright is a Crow that has been good apart from one game in his last few and that was his red vested 31 against Brisbane. He rebounded against the Tigers with a tidy 85. Certainly consider this guy.
One guy I do trust is The Gu who has really shown his talent of late with only one score under 75 in his last 7. He comes up against the Doggies, but I don’t think this will really trouble him too much and he should come through with another big score for you. Despite his 52 last week, I am going to still recommend Zac Clarke because there is pretty much no one left to play for Freo this week! His form has been all over 82 in his last 7 games except for last week, so he should still have a good output.
Nick Duigan scored 77 last time he plyed the Saints and his form at the time was about the same as it is now, so I think he should be a fairly safe bet, but he won’t get you a massive score this week.
Not sure why Allen Christensen got the green vest last week, perhaps he lost the raffle? He only scored 30, but after a week off and less than half a game, I see him getting a full outing against Collingwood this week, my only concern here is that he is listed last on the bench. Last time against Collingwood he had a green23, but don’t be put off by that, since round 14 he has had a 4 tons and a heap of good scores.
Dion Prestia, Danny Stanley and David Swallow have all been good performers for our teams all year (well most of it in Prestia’s case) and I see no reason that their recent form shouldn’t continue this week. All of these guys should be scoring in the 70 – 90 range this week, However, when they played the Hawks last, Prestia had 28 and Stanley 83 and Swallow didn’t make the trip. But I think their form of late has been much better than that and that was Prestia’s worst Non Vest score of the year.
Paul Puopolo had an 68 when he played the Suns at Launceston but his scoring was in the 60’s then. Lately he has been drifting towards the forward line and snagging a couple of goals here and there, he won’t score 129 like last week, but he will certainly do better than 68. Teammate Luke Breust is another that has really come on since last time, however, his first game against the Suns was also his first full game after coping 5 green vests in a row to start his career, and he repayed us with a monster 112 that day. Given he is playing better and more consistently now, I would stick with him! Rounding out the Hawks we have David Hale who won’t have much opposition and has been scoring in the 70 – 100 range of late and I can’t see that changing particularly with Bailey out, he will get more time on the ball and potentially stay on the ground for more of the game. Isaac Smith had a down day last week (thanks, it helped me win a couple of games) but I think this will turn around against the Gold Coast this week. He had a 99 last time they met and I expect nothing to change this time.
Cameron Pedersen didn’t do too well last week, but I think he has one more good score left in him. He has a 69 last week but a 114 the week before.
How happy does it make me to put a couple of Power boys in this list… John Butcher has been sensational for Port, and he hasn’t been too bad for the DT’ers too. 58, 67 and 93 in his first 3 games. If you do have him, well done. If you have to play him he should be ok, but he would be a good choice as bench cover. Matty Lobbe has been good for the Power and has been over 70 and up to 93 in his last 4. Just beware that Brogan is back so Lobbe may lose some points.
Ty Vickery has had two 80’s in his last two and has played well up forward kicking a few goals last week. I would have confidence playing him this week if you need to. His mate Dean Polo has come back to a reasonable score last week of 94. He had a couple of weeks of 60’s there but hopefully he is back to where he was this week.
For those of you like me who picked up Andrew Gaff at the start of the year and realised he didn’t make enough cash to trade him and held him, you are reaping the rewards now. He has had some great scores of late, his only poor one was 57 two weeks ago. I will be playing him (through lack of players, thanks Hawks) and I think he should score a tidy 85+.
Risky picks, but sometimes the X Factor can win you the GF…
Patty Karnezis must think his car has broken down at the lights. In the last three he has gone Greenvest, Redvest and then Greenvest again!. I think his propensity for a vest and poor scoring of late mean he shouldn’t be on your ground this week. Teammate Sam Sheldon also dropped off last week with a 52 and that worries me. He had a good run of 3 games prior to that, but no real form prior to those 3. Risky, but playable maybe.
Speaking of an X Factor, and not that crap tv show, Alex Fasolo would have to fall into that category. He has been plodding along very nicely of late and has had some good scores, but I just wonder how he will go against the top contender in Geelong. He scored 43 against Hawthorn, Green 21 against Carlton and 50 against the Saints so against those sides towards the top of the ladder he has struggled a bit.
Clayton Hinkley is a name that most won’t know and is my out and out smokey this week, but he is one of the Dockers that is still standing and has had 73 and green63 in the last two weeks, if he doesn’t cop a vest he could get himself a reasonable score? Maybe?
Harley Bennell is an interesting guy at the Gold Coast. I just don’t know how to rate him I just don’t have the confidence in him. Harley hangs around in the 50’s and 60’s mostly so I wouldn’t risk him. You could also throw Brandon Matera into the mix too. Since he lit it up against Port in Rd 5 (although that round has been permanently wiped from my memory) he has done pretty much nothing. He had 6 weeks off then scored 70 last week. I won’t be playing him. Zac Smith has really ground to a halt at the end of the year and against Hale this week I think he will struggle again.
I have had to drop Stefan Martin to this area this week. He has now been consistent, but only getting 60’s. Just be aware that this is what you will get.
Kieren Harper will be ok, but he is really only Cinnamon. I reckon maybe 65 max for him.
Tom Liberatore has made a comeback and he he has a 71, 97 and 60 in the last few. So I think against a depleted Dockers outfit I think he should bet 60ish again. His mates Tutty and Dahlhaus are a little questionable for me. They can score well, but will they?
That’s it for Get Off The Bench for the year. I wish you all the best for the Grand Final this week. Thanks for reading throughout the year, I hope I have helped you, if not, well sorry about that! I have certainly enjoyed trying to sift through the rif raf of the bench cover that we all have. Next year we may not need to rely on these guys too much, or certainly not so many of them! Have a great off season and I will see what I can do to help you pick your best side going into next year. Catch you all over the summer in Twittertown @pkd73
- I Smith
- Z Clarke
- I Smith