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Battle in attack heats up ahead of Round 1

St Kilda spearhead Tim Membrey slotted a few goals on Friday.

The battle for forward line spots in Alan Richardson’s best 22 has already begun with today’s extensive match practice session providing several young Saints with a chance to impress.

The Saints’ bevy of small forwards and emerging talls were on display in the three 20-minute match, as players cranked things up a notch six weeks out from Round 1.

Jade Gresham was lively up forward, bagging multiple goals and handing off another two, while also dragging in mark of the day.

Ben Long was another to impress, with his speed and agility catching he eye on several occasions.

After three games in his debut season, the 20-year-old has reaped the rewards of a strong pre-season and will be a player to watch in Friday night’s AFL X tournament.

Jack Billings’ class was on display early as he roamed from half forward to defensive 50 before being rested in the final two periods.

Also finding plenty of the ball was a trimmed down Mav Weller, with the explosive small forward laying several bone-crunching tackles and also hitting the scoreboard.

With Josh Bruce sitting out the session – due return to full training next week – Paddy McCartin and Tim Membrey went head to head at either end.

Membrey bagged three goals pitted against gun defender Jake Carlisle for long periods, while McCartin moved well and produced one of the game highlights with a strong pack mark in the second period.

Josh Battle also found space on the lead, while Rowan Marshall impressed rotating from the ruck to the forward line.

The pair have been two of the big movers during the summer, with both looking to add to the one AFL match they played in 2017.