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VFL Preview: Round 14 v Geelong

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 23: David Armitage of the Saints celebrates a goal during the 2016 AFL Round 18 match between the Western Bulldogs and the St Kilda Saints at Etihad Stadium on July 23, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Justine Walker/AFL Media)
Hard nut David Armitage will make his comeback from groin surgery in the VFL this weekend.

Plenty of Saints will be out to impress in the VFL this weekend when Sandringham travels down the highway to clash with Geelong at Simonds Stadium.


Where: Simonds Stadium, Geelong

When: Saturday, 22 July

Time: 2.10pm.

Conditions: Partly cloudy with a predicted top of 13 degrees.

Last time they met:

Sandringham 15.11 (101) def. Geelong 15.9 (99) at Simonds Stadium, Round 9, 2016.

Goals: Dennis-Lane 6, Wright 2, Acres 2, Answerth, Curren, Pierce, Rich, Saunders.

Best: Dennis-Lane, Acres, Minchington, Shenton, Saunders, Cook. 

Form guide:

Sandringham will head down the highway full of confidence following last week’s stirring eight-point win over Port Melbourne at North Port Oval. The Zebras now sit tenth and are only out of the top eight on percentage. VFL coach Lindsay Gilbee described last Saturday’s win as the best and most consistent performance of the season to date. 

Geelong will be searching for their sixth victory of 2017 on Saturday to keep in touch with the top eight but two losses in the past fortnight has them on shaky ground. The Cats play well at home and coach Shane O’Bree won’t be allowing an easy win for the visiting Zebras.

Selected team:

B: 16. M. Hayes, 20. E. Le Grice, 75. B. Rice

HB: 50. R. Atkins, 61. D. Joyce, 13. J. Noone

C: 63. N.  O'Kearney, 9. M.  Cook, 39. E. Phillips

HF: 62. R. Connellan, 6. J. Fisscher, 79. M. Weller

F: 2. K. Answerth, 36. J. Battle, 76. N. Wright

R: 30. T. Hickey, 81. D. Armitage, 33. N. Freeman

Int: 69. J. Holmes, 1. D. Weickhardt, 44. H. Brayshaw, 3. L. Verma, 27. N. Smith, 70. D. McKenzie,  34. B. Long, 65. B. White

23P: 51. B. Bailey

Players to watch:


Maverick Weller

The 25-year-old former Sun was influential without starring for the Zebras last week, finishing with 17 disposals, eight tackles and a goal against Port Melbourne. As he continues to push for an AFL return, Weller’s physicality and leadership around the ball will be vital against an expected aggressive Geelong side on Saturday.

David Armitage

The important midfielder will resume football for the first time since April, having undergone groin surgery and will play an important role for the Zebras on Saturday. Tough and uncompromising, Armitage will add much class and experience to a young midfield group that includes ruckman Tom Hickey and Nathan Freeman in the centre square.


Sam Dobson

Dobson was the Cats’ only multiple goal kicker in the big loss to Footscray last Saturday night, booting three majors to make it ten goals in three weeks. One the Zebras will need to lock down because Dobson has proven he’s a genuine match winner inside 50.

James Tsitas

The Cats’ highest possession winner last week, the speedy wingman finished with 32 disposals, 11 marks and six tackles to be among their best. Likely to again be an important player against Sandringham, the Cats will need him back at his best on Saturday.