Shane Mumford was very good last week with how GWS wanted him to take on All-Australian ruck Brodie Grundy. Adam Tomlinson was second ruck, and his five-minute bursts in the ruck will have a bearing on the momentum either team will get at mid stoppages and centre bounces.
I think Matt de Boer will go to Dustin Martin. When you have a successful record on a star, you always go back to the bloke who gets the job done for you. It is way too big a risk to think of any other consideration for de Boer.
Dion Prestia is on track to be the Gary Ayres medallist (for player of the finals) with his form, but he is not as damaging as Dusty. Who is?
Could Zac Williams play on Prestia, with a mindset that he is playing him like a half-back flanker?
Harry Perryman was very good last week. There is probably not a player from Richmond on the outside that he will be set to run with. He will most likely be opposed to Josh Caddy, who has seen a big shift throughout the season. He was used as a pseudo key forward for his first two years at the Tigers but with the acquisition of Tom Lynch he lost his identity. He has moved to a role player on the wing. The Tigers’ culture can shape players with these type of role changes.
The Giants value stoppages more than any other team in the comp. Tricks don’t win grand finals, so it will be high attention to detail in setting up correctly to get the game looking the way they want it to. Limiting Richmond’s forward momentum from contest situations will be the high focus.
Richmond normally push Kane Lambert up from half forward to the stoppages so if that GWS defender follows him up, he will be in a position to try to block the Tigers’ forward exit and momentum out of the stoppage.
The wing roles and de Boer’s tag are the non-negotiable roles at stoppage,s while Tim Taranto and Williams will be their first possession players.
Shane Edwards is equal to Scott Pendlebury for decision-making in the competition. He has the capacity to put his teammate in a better position with the ball by hand more than foot.
The move of Edwards into midfield has added to Richmond’s assets and reduced the burden Trent Cotchin has carried for 10 years.
It’s a very evenly matched battle in the midfield and very hard to split. I think the ruck will shape the outcome most. Nankervis and Soldo v Mumford and Tomlinson, it’s the Tigers – just – for me.