St Kilda – Michmutters

Western Bulldogs interest in James Rowe, Izak Rankine to Adelaide Crows, latest

The Western Bulldogs are set to be active in this year’s trade period, with another player linked with a Footscray move.

Plus Suns coach Stuart Dew confirms star Izak Rankine has a big decision to make on his future.

Get the latest player movement news and updates in AFL Trade Whispers!

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The Western Bulldogs are reportedly “red hot” on luring Adelaide’s James Rowe away from South Australia for 2023 and beyond.

Rowe, whose father Stephen played for the Crows in the 90s, is out of contract at the end of the year after being snapped up with pick 38 in the 2020 AFL draft.

But the lack of new deal has some speculating Rowe won’t be at the club next season.

“James Rowe is probably not going to get a contract at the Crows, that’s the word,” SEN SA’s Andrew Hayes said.

“The word right now is he’s probably not going to get renewed. This is a bloke who has played 16 games this year and averaging 13 disposals which is marked as above average for a small forward.

What’s happened to King’s kicking? | 01:29

“He kicked two goals on the weekend (against North Melbourne) and was a late addition for Wayne Milera.”

It’s reported the Dogs were initially interested in Rowe back at the 2020 Draft, but due to Adelaide’s bid on Jamarra Ugle-Hagan, they had to cough up enough points to match it.

“The Bulldogs are red hot into him. They were into him a couple of years ago, they were going to draft him, hence why the Crows had to nominate Jamarra Ugle-Hagan to get rid of a lot of their (the Bulldogs’) points,” Hayes said.

“They couldn’t accumulate enough points from draft picks to get to James Rowe so he could be on their list.

“Now it looks like the Bulldogs are set to pounce on James Rowe.”

Fellow SEN host Kane Cornes said Rowe “might get a better offer” from an interstate club that what he could expect from the Crows.

“I still think the Crows will offer him a contract, but whether it will be a bargain basement type set up or whether another club sees a different and a larger role for him to play,” he said.

“He might have a decision to make. It might be good for him to go to another club.

“He’ll be playing AFL football next year, I think it will still be at Adelaide but I wouldn’t be surprised if another club makes him feel a bit more loved than Adelaide has made him feel.”

Rowe played 19 games in his debut season and had featured 15 times this year – plus he was an unused medi sub for the clash with Collingwood in Round 18.

The Dogs have been strongly linked to Fremantle big man Rory Lobb this trade period, while there’s also reports of interest in Dockers swing man Griffin Logue.

How Longmire & Swans ‘disarmed’ Feet | 04:27


Gold Coast coach Stuart Dew has confirmed star Izak Rankine has received a big offer to join a rival club, with the 22-year-old out of contract at the end of the year.

Adelaide are reportedly offering the forward a five-year deal worth as much as $800,000 per season to return to his home state.

Speaking at his post match press conference on Saturday, Dew all but admitted the Suns weren’t able to match what was being offered to Rankine elsewhere.

“We certainly feel like we’ve got a great support system around him,” he said.

“We feel like we’ve put a lot of development into him and he’s starting to show where he can get to.

“When guys get to the end of their contracts, they’ve got decisions to make.

“And he’s certainly been given a big incentive to look elsewhere.”

It’s believed the Suns are offering Rankine around $650,000 per year.

Rankine has played 48 games for the Suns since being taken with pick three in the 2018 Draft.

He was taken the same year the Gold Coast snapped up Jack Lukosius (pick two) and injured forward Ben King (pick six).

“Heartbreak” awaits whoever finishes 6th | 02:27

Also taken in that draft year after Rankine were Connor Rozee (five), Bailey Smith (seven), Nick Blakey (10) and Zak Butters (12).

Just last week the Suns leadership group went public with their pleas for Rankine to remain at the club.

Co-captain Touk Miller made it clear that convincing the “special” small forward to stay was a top priority, having already re-signed Ben King, Jack Lukosius, Ben Ainsworth, Elijah Hollands and Mac Andrew this year.

“I know there’s a lot of speculation around him and his future, but for us we really want him to be at this club. He’s a special person, a special player,” Miller said.

“We’ve gone to him and had a few chats about how much he means to us and means to the club, so whether that plays a part in the decision, hopefully it does.”



St Kilda Saints urged to put stars on trade table, Leigh Montagna, list management, Brad Hill, Zak Jones, Jack Billings, Jade Gresham

St Kilda great Leigh Montagna has implored the club to trade out some of its star senior players to bring more youth into the club in a “reset”, saying he thinks it “needs to go back to go forward.”

The Saints had their final hopes dashed after losing to Brisbane, falling to 11-10 to continue St Kilda’s drop off after a promising 5-1 start to the season.

Since Round 7 St Kilda has ranked bottom six in the ‘Core Four’ stats — with the footy (15th), without the footy, clearance and post-clearance contest (all 12th).

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“They’re in a real predicament … this is 15 rounds of football, it’s a bottom-four profile, so they have really struggled with their game,” Montagna said on Fox Footy’s First Crack.

Asked if their issues lie with personnel or system, Montagna said: “I think it’s a combination of both.”

The Saints’ finals hopes are over (Photo by Daniel Pockett/AFL Photos/via Getty Images)Source: FOX SPORTS

It comes after St Kilda has aggressively recruited players via trade and free agency over the last four years, bringing Paddy Ryder (35 years old), Dan Hannebery (32), Tom Campbell (31), Brad Hill, Dean Kent, Mason Wood, Brad Crouch (all 29), Jarrod Lienert, Zak Jones (both 28), Dougal Howard (27), Dan Butler, Jack Hayes (both 26) and Jack Higgins (24) into the fold.

Looking at the age profile of those players combined with the rest of the senior core, Montgana questioned how much upside the Saints’ list has.

“This is the concern for St Kilda supporters when you think about where the improvement is going to come from in the years to come,” he said.

“How much room for improvement have they got these guys? How high is their ceiling? And that’s in conjunction with their core group of Seb Ross, Tim Membrey, Jimmy Webster, Jack Sinclair, Jack Billings, Rowan Marshall and Jack Steele, who are all 26 plus years old as well.

“There’s not a lot of ceiling room within the core group of players on top of that profile… the upside is a very small margin.”

“Heartbreak” awaits whoever finishes 6th | 02:27

Montagna did praise young guns Max King, Cooper Sharman (both 22), Nasiah Wanganeen-Milera (20), Marcus Windhager and Mitch Owens (both 19), who’ve joined the club over the same four-year period, but said he had “question marks” on their other youngsters.

He believes St Kilda should follow Port Adelaide’s blueprint from post 2018 and trade out their players with currency to try and bounce back quickly.

“I think they need to go back to go forward,” Montagna said.

“I think they need to trade out some of those players they’ve brought in and bring in some more young talent and reset — Brad Hill, Zak Jones and maybe Jack Billings or Jade Gresham to try and get some other young talent in.

“I look at Port Adelaide — they went through a period for five years where they were mid-table — then traded Chad Wingard, Jasper Pittard and Jared Polec when they were playing good footy — Jack Hombsch, Paddy Ryder and Dougal Howard.

“They made some change and got in those young players — Zak Butters, Xavier Duursma, Connor Rozee and Mitch Georgiades — then all of a sudden played in back-t0-back preliminary finals (in 2020 and 2021).

“I think there’s some concerns there for St Kilda, they need to have a real hard think about where their list is at moving forward.”



AFL news 2022: Brad Crouch beats hit vs Darcy Gardiner video, St Kilda vs Brisbane score

St Kilda midfielder Brad Crouch could be staring down the barrel of a stint on the sidelines following a late hit on Brisbane Lions defender Darcy Gardiner during Friday evening’s AFL match at Marvel Stadium.

During the second quarter of Brisbane’s 15-point victory, Crouch’s shoulder made heavy contact with Gardiner’s head near the boundary line.

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The dazed 26-year-old required medical attention following the ugly incident, which sparked a brief melee.

“That’s not good I don’t think,” footy icon Brian Taylor said on Channel 7 commentary.

“That’s head contact with a bump and it could’ve been a tackle.”

Melbourne AFLW footballer Daisy Pearce continued: “That’s weeks. At least a week and anything upward of that hinges on what those doctors are working out right now.”

Channel 7 commentator James Brayshaw replied: “You say that, but in the current landscape how would anyone know?”

Crouch will almost certainly come under scrutiny from the Match Review Officer, but the severity of his punishment remains unclear.

Earlier this week, the AFL Appeals Board overturned the AFL Tribunal’s decision to uphold Carlton captain Patrick Cripps’ two-match ban for rough conduct due to a lack of procedural fairness.

The outcome baffled the footy community, and the AFL Appeals Board could face further scrutiny following Crouch’s late hit at Marvel Stadium.

“Good on Carlton for pursuing it and getting their player free but I thought we were all about protecting the head and Cal Ah Chee had no chance whatsoever to protect his own head last week,” Lion coach Chris Fagan told reporters in the post- match press conference.

“And he was off early in the game last week and he’s not playing this week as a result of it so we get penalized for that and unfortunately Cal gets injured.

“We’ve just got to protect the head – it’s as simple as that.”

Melbourne great Garry Lyon fumed on Fox Footy: “It’s the greatest raffle in sport right now… it’s a farce.

“We don’t know what’s going on. ‘Procedural fairness’, come on.

“I hope this is not the start of a long concussion run for Callum Ah Chee, because we’d go back to this moment and go, ‘This is an AFL that makes a lot of noise but (doesn’t do enough)’ .”

St Kilda will need a minor miracle to qualify for the finals after Friday’s 12.9 (81) to 9.12 (66) defeat.

Brisbane opened up a 26-point buffer late in the second quarter, but for the third game in a row, they either gave up a sizeable lead, or had one eaten into significantly, as the Saints exploded in the third quarter to lead by five points, putting the Lions’ top-four ambitions in peril.

However, Brisbane’s pursuit of a double chance would’ve been severely impeded if Saints spearhead Max King kicked straight, but he could only must five behinds, including four missed set shots from directly in front in the second half when the Saints enjoyed all the momentum .

In response, Rayner stepped up to the plate, showing King how it’s done, booting three of Brisbane’s four final-quarter goals, to finish up with a team-high four majors, and prove to be the match winner.

The Saints will likely drop to 10th this weekend, meaning they will have to not only beat the Swans in Sydney in the final round next week, but will also need a raft of other results to go their way to make the finals.

– with Ronny Lerner, NCA NewsWire

Read related topics:Brisbane



St Kilda Saints loss to Brisbane Lions, missed opportunities, goalkicking inaccuracy, Max King, reactions, response, commentary, social media, fallout, latest

St Kilda has blown a golden opportunity at the wrong time, falling to Brisbane by 15 points in game there to be won late with the Saints’ season on all the line to all but end their final hopes.

Brett Ratten’s side recovered from a slow start to come charging back into the game in the second half, but wasn’t able to convert its opportunities including a wasteful 0.5 kicking display from Max King.

Saints legend Nick Riewoldt said he hoped the club wouldn’t put all the onus on its goalkicking inaccuracy in the second half, lamenting its lackluster start to the contest.

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“They had the game where they wanted it… but I hope it doesn’t turn into a ‘we just didn’t take our opportunities’, conversation. Because early in the contest when the game was there to be won, they weren’t necessarily up for it,” he said on Fox Footy post-match.

The Saints’ final hopes were dealt a massive blow (Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)Source: FOX SPORTS

“Then when it gets desperate you take it on. I hope it’s a really learning experience this game for St Kilda. When they played with a bit of desperation, especially with the footy, then they put the Lions under pressure and looked like a finals team.

“If you’re looking at it with a narrow lens, you would say they didn’t take their opportunities. Max King was bit of a liability in front of goal, he didn’t look he wanted the ball in the end, so he’ll be really disappointed that he couldn’t convert.”

St Kilda ended up winning the disposal count (327-310) and inside 50s (50-49), but converted 9.12 of its shots at goal (43 per cent) compared to Brisbane’s 12.9 (57 per cent), with Cam Rayner the match winner for the Lions with three of his four goals in the last term.

Demons legend Garry Lyon was much more encouraged by St Kilda’s style when it had more urgency and played faster and direct.

“The competitive, go slow style they’ve been playing has been left behind largely … that’s the learnings I would hope they get from it, because when they went with some stuff that looked unscripted, that’s when they looked most dangerous,” he said.

It’ll likely go down as another wasted season for the 11-10 Saints despite such a promising 5-1 start to 2022 to emerge as a premiership dark horse as Ratten was rewarded with a contract extension.

Saint in hot water over bump? | 00:41

But they’ve now won just three of their last 10 matches and would need nearly everything to go right by the way of other results for them to make finals from here including beating an in-form Swans outfit next weekend at Marvel Stadium.

Former Hawthorn sharpshooter Ben Dixon was however still giving St Kilda hope to finish in the top eight and was left unconvinced by Brisbane’s performance, calling it the “sweep escape”.

“I think Brisbane was given that game, they didn’t win it… if Richmond and Carlton lose they’ve (the Saints) still got a heartbeat. I’m giving them hope,” he said on Fox Footy Live.

But St Kilda champion Nick Dal Santo doesn’t believe his former side is currently playing a good enough brand to hold up in September.

“You want your finals series to be teams that are currently in form or capable of causing an upset from the bottom of the top eight,” he said.

“The form that the Saints have played of recent, no, I don’t think their in the best eight teams in the comp right now.”

Others responded on social media to the Saints’ blown opportunity.



Max King goalkicking, bad technique, choking, Brett Ratten press conference, Matthew Lloyd training, St Kilda coaches

St Kilda coach Brett Ratten has said star forward Max King “won’t be seeing anybody outside the club” to help improve his set-shot routine, instead backing in those at the club to help steady the 22-year-old’s game.

King imposed himself in the air during Friday night’s loss to Brisbane at Marvel Stadium, but kicked five behinds and ended up goalless as the Saints’ final hopes were all-but dashed.

Speaking post-game, Ratten was staunch in his defense of King.

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Cripps free to play, ban overturned! | 00:35

“It’s part of the game and you look through great forwards to have played the game, they’ve had a night where they haven’t scored like they wanted to,” he said.

“The pleasing part we know about Max is that Tuesday was a day off for the players and he was at Marvel Stadium for an hour-and-a-half having goal-kicking practice. Every day we’re at the footy club or not at the footy club he’s there having extra goal-kicking and really rehearsing and fine-tuning his game to make sure he gets the opportunity to score on game-day. He’s doing a power of work.

“What I do know is I want Max King in my corner. He’ll be at our footy club for 10 years and when we look back we’ll be saying what a great player he is and what he’s done. Tonight he had a night where it didn’t work for him.

“He did everything right but finish, for great forwards that’s happened in the game. He’s 21 years of age, we love what he brings to the footy club, he’s developing and we know that he’s doing the work. Sometimes you don’t get the reward all the time but he’ll keep doing that and you watch, he’ll turn it around.”

King has enjoyed a relatively impressive season in front of goal, booting 47 goals from his 21 games.

There have been occasions, however, where inaccuracy has plagued him, most notably his return of one goal and seven behinds in round six and two goals and five behinds in round 20 before tonight’s five behinds.

Ratten said a myriad of factors were at play for King.

King kicked five behinds on Friday night (Photo by Daniel Pockett/AFL Photos/via Getty Images).Source: Getty Images

“I wouldn’t say high pressure, I think sometimes the goal-kicking, it’s got so many elements to it,” he said.

“It’s the technical aspect, the mental aspect, the fatigue, what part of the ground, people score from different parts and score easier when the ball is on the right side versus the left.

“I want to go to war with Max because he delivers and he will deliver.”

The Saints in 2021 knocked back Max King’s request for help from Essendon champion Matthew Lloyd – who also coached King at Haileybury College – instead opting to leave King’s goal-kicking practice to those internally.

Asked on Friday night if there had been a change since then, Ratten’s response was firm.

“He won’t be seeing anybody outside the club, he doesn’t need to. We’ve got people with the skillset to keep working there,” he said.

“As I said to you, it’s not just all about the technical aspect, there’s a mental aspect to it as well. With goal-kicking, it’s a closed skill and there’s different elements to it.

“It’s not just we bring somebody in and they fix up the hand drop or anything like that. He hasn’t got many flaws, but sometimes it can go against you.”

Saint in hot water over bump? | 00:41



Brisbane Lions v Carlton Blues, Callum Ah Chee, racial abuse, targeted, Patrick Cripps, bump, concussed, tribunal, ban, suspension, cleared

Brisbane Lion Callum Ah Chee has called out online racial abuse in the wake of Carlton’s successful appeal of skipper Patrick Cripps’ two-week suspension and the club has referred it to the AFL Integrity Unit.

Cripps was cleared by the AFL appeals board on Thursday night, having been given a two-week ban for a big hit on Ah Chee in last week’s clash at the Gabba.

The AFL on Friday confirmed it would not appeal that decision and Cripps was free to play against Melbourne this weekend.

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But amid the fallout, Ah Chee, who was injured in the incident and will miss Brisbane’s match with St Kilda due to the AFL’s concussion protocols, was the target of racial abuse that he spoke out against on his personal Instagram account.

“Not something you want to wake up to in the morning,” I posted.

“How can this still keep happening. Why can’t my brothers and I just play the game we love without having to worry about s**t like this… If my son grows up playing the game – I hope he doesn’t have to deal with this hate.

“It hurts and I’m sick to death of seeing it.”

The Lions also condemned the comments calling the behavior “disgusting” and reported it to the AFL Integrity Unit.

“The Brisbane Lions celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and the incredible contribution Indigenous players have made to our club and to our great game,” a clubs statement said.

“It’s disappointing to have to do so, but in moments like this we take the approach as a footy club to urge people to educate themselves about the harmful impacts of racially motivated comments and online abuse.

“At the Lions we are a family and when one hurts, we all hurt.

“If you know anyone who behaves in this way, call it out as completely unacceptable.”

Ah Chee was supported by Brisbane teammate Mitch Robinson, who said the abuse was “as weak as it ever gets”.

“Sick of having to see our Indigenous and multicultural players subject to racism over and over again,” he posted on Twitter.

“If you see it, even if you might know these uneducated trolls on social media keep calling it out and report them.”

The AFL confirmed it would not appeal against Cripps’ ban being overturned, noting the case “involved complexities”, but the reasons for the decision would be closely reviewed.

“The AFL acknowledges and accepts the decision of the AFL appeals board in overturning the tribunal’s decision to suspend Patrick Cripps from the Carlton Football Club,” a league statement said.

“As the appeal board chairman commented last night, the case involved complexities and the AFL will closely review the appeal board’s detailed reasons for the decision that will be received in due course.

“That said, the health and safety of our players at an elite and community level is of paramount importance and that priority will continue to inform the AFL’s ongoing work in taking action where health and safety is impacted or at risk.”



AFL 2022: Max King torched, Brisbane Lions defeat St Kilda, finals, ladder

St Kilda had it all to play for on Friday night against the Brisbane Lions, but they repeatedly shot themselves in the foot.

A thrilling third quarter saw them come back to life and put the Lions to the sword. But when it mattered most, they fell apart.

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The Saints had ample opportunities in the final quarter to run away with the contest, but continually threw it away in front of goal.

Young star forward Max King was the prime culprit, finishing the night with five behinds to his name as his set shot routine abandoned him.

The yips seemed to have taken a hold as his routine changed on multiple occasions.

At the other end of the ground the Lions capitalized on their opportunities. The Lions’ last five scoring shots netted them four goals and one behind. The Saints’ last seven scoring shots were all behinds.

St Kilda fans in the stands were routinely spotted by the cameras with their head in their hands after each miss in front of goal.

“The set shots were relatively easy, they weren’t on tight angles. You just have to go back and suck up the pressure and put them through the big sticks,” Jonathan Brown said on Fox Footy.

Former St Kilda great Nick Riewoldt said King had zero confidence in his kicking by the end.

“He’s had four shots from directly in front and in the end he just looked completely devoid of confidence, his routine was broken,” he said.

“To the point that we watched him pretty closely the last five to 10 minutes and I don’t think he wanted the ball.”

Garry Lyon added: “That’s a horrible night. I agree that in the end he was saying I don’t want to go near it.”

Footy fans watching on were quick to lambaste King for his horror night out, when St Kilda were desperate for the win.

CODE Sports’ Daniel Cherny wrote: “There is no more excruciating sight in football than watching Max King kicking for goal.”

St Kilda will now need a minor miracle to qualify for the finals after losing to the Cam Rayner-inspired Brisbane Lions by 15 points.

Brisbane opened up a 26-point buffer late in the second quarter, but for the third game in a row, they either gave up a sizeable lead, or had one eaten into significantly, as the Saints exploded in the third quarter to lead by five points, putting the Lions’ top-four ambitions in peril.

The Saints will likely drop to 10th this weekend, meaning they will have to not only beat the Swans in Sydney in the final round next week, but will also need a raft of other results to go their way to make the finals.

The win launches Brisbane into a second spot on the ladder currently and keeps their hopes alive of securing a final home.

– with Ronny Lerner, NCA Newswire

Read related topics:Brisbane



Brisbane hold on for 15-point win over St Kilda as Cam Rayner leads final-quarter charge

Brisbane have enhanced their AFL top-four prospects and all but buried St Kilda’s finals hopes with a hard-fought 15-point win at Docklands Stadium.

Hugh McCluggage (23 disposals) and Cam Rayner (four goals) starred for the Lions, who dominated the first half on Friday night and resisted a stunning fightback from their hosts.

Mason Wood (four goals) and Tim Membrey (three) helped drag the Saints back into the contest as Brad Crouch, Seb Ross and Jack Sinclair lifted during the third term.

But a string of wasted chances in front of goal — most notably by Max King, who finished with 0.5 — ultimately proved costly for St Kilda as Brisbane steadied to post a 12.9 (81) to 9.12 (66) victory on Friday night.

Rayner kicked three goals in a decisive final-quarter contribution, with the Lions adding 4.1 to 0.5 for the term.

The result lifted Brisbane to second spot on the ladder, though Collingwood, Melbourne and Sydney have games in hand and can leapfrog the Lions with wins over the weekend.

Cam Rayner pumps his fist while running
Cam Rayner played an inspired last quarter to steer Brisbane to victory.(Getty Images: Daniel Pockett)

St Kilda now have to rely on a string of other results falling their way in order to keep alive their chances of gatecrashing the top-eight.

The Saints will likely take on Sydney in the last match of the home-and-away season without midfield accumulator Crouch, who is in trouble for a high bump on Brisbane defender Darcy Gardiner.

And Jimmy Webster is also set to missing after being substituted out of the Lions clash with a hamstring injury before quarter-time.

Webster’s setback came as the Saints’ back-line dealt with a deluge of opposition forward entries that Brisbane couldn’t make count on the scoreboard.

The first goal was against the run of play when St Kilda livewire Jack Higgins made the most of an open forward line to bounce through a drop punt from 60 meters.

There were four lead changes in the opening term, with Eric Hipwood’s goal on the siren giving the Lions a one-point advantage.

Brad Hill tackles Brandon Starcevich to the ground while he's holding the football
The Saints brought the physical heat from the outset against the Lions.(Getty Images: Daniel Pockett)

The visitors dominated the second quarter, building a 26-point lead off a 32-17 advantage in inside-50s through the first half as McCluggage pulled the strings in midfield.

The Saints flipped the script in the third quarter as Wood and Membrey kicked two goals each, briefly putting the home side back in front.

King’s tally included three behinds during the third quarter, including two from set shots about 20 meters out.

He had a chance to level the scores during the final term but missed from 40 meters, with the Lions going coast-to-coast from the kick-in that resulted in a Joe Daniher goal.

Rayner iced the result with a superb curling shot from the boundary.

Daniher and Hipwood finished with two goals each, while Brownlow medalist Lachie Neale (16 disposals) was outplayed by impressive minder Marcus Windahger (21).

Get the scores, stats and results below.




St Kilda Saints v Brisbane Lions, Marvel Stadium, live blog, match report, analysis, preview, teams, photos, videos

St Kilda need a victory over Brisbane on Friday night to keep their final hopes alive, but they’ll be without inspirational mid Dan Hannebery.

The Saints (11-9, 101.1%) have taken a cautious approach with the veteran after he tweaked his ankle in last week’s loss to Geelong.

Brisbane (14-6, 124.2%) have their own injury woes with defender Marcus Adams ruled out with concussion.

The Lions have beaten St Kilda just once at Marvel Stadium in 22 years, dating back to 2000 when it was known as Colonial Stadium.

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The medi subs are Zak Jones (St Kilda) and Ryan Lester (Brisbane).

This match gets underground at 7.50pm AEST from Marvel Stadium.

Watch it live on Fox Footy (channel 504) from 7pm AEST.

Follow St Kilda v Brisbane in our live blog below!


The Saints showed their cards early when tagger Marcus Windhager went straight to Lachie Neale for the first bounce.

And despite the Lions doing all the attacking in the opening minutes, it was Jack Higgins who got St Kilda on the board first.

Higgins pounced when Oscar McInerney missed with his hands in the middle of the ground.

The Saint set sail for home from the center square and it bounced through.

“One tiny little handling error and it’s out the back door,” commentator Brian Taylor said.

Neale headed deep forward in a bid to try and overcome the Windhager tag, but had just one touch to his name after more than 10 minutes of play.

“He and the Lions asking the question.. ‘alright you can run around the midfield as a tagger but how do you go as a pure defender if I go forward?’ Good move,” commentator Daisy Pearce praised.

After early misses by Dan McStay and Hugh McCluggage, plus Cam Rayner’s out on the full, it took a brilliant Charlie Cameron contested grab to get the Lions on the board.

McCluggage then added his side’s second a minute later from the center clearance.

The ball just wouldn’t sit for Neale as he streamed inside 50 and the Saints dodged a third bullet as Jack Sinclair was there to bring the ball out of defense.

But the first term was played mostly in the Lions’ front half as St Kilda were unable to clear.

When Jarrod Lienert won a big ruck battle against McInerney, the Saints got forward and Tim Membrey didn’t disappoint with the snap – and he went to Dayne Zorko to let him know about it.

Tempers threatened to spill over a few times in the first term as the Saints sat just one-point behind.

“St Kilda are on track to record 100 tackles here,” commentator James Brayshaw said.

“They have come to play.”

Mason Wood then gave the Saints the lead after Mitch Owens broke free from the stoppage and got the handball out.

But St Kilda let the lead slip after the quarter time siren when Hipwood slotted his set shot from 40m out.

The second term belonged entirely to the Lions as they found another gear and kicked away.

A big Brad Crouch bump rocked Lion Darcy Gardiner early in the second term as the Saint crashed heavily into his opponent.

Pearce immediately thought Crouch’s actions would draw at least a week’s ban, but luckily for Gardner he was able to stay out on the field.

Joe Daniher went aerial before kicking his first goal of the night before Linc McCarthy extended Brisbane’s lead to 14 points minutes later.

Like the first quarter, the ball remained locked in Brisbane’s attack as St Kilda’s defense was put under enormous pressure.

Hipwood got out the back and goaled from the square before another big contested grab by McStay pushed the lead out to a game-high 26 points.

Wood gave the Saints some hope minutes out from half time with a big goal from just outside 50.

But by the main break, Brisbane held a 22-point lead.

If you can’t see the blog, tap here.



Ken Hinkley will coach Port Adelaide in 2023 says David Koch, Power contract

Port Adelaide president David Koch has emphatically declared Ken Hinkley will see out his current contract and coach the club in 2023.

A question mark had been hovering over Hinkley and his position at the Power, despite being contracted to the club until next year and his defiant AFL 360 interview on Monday night where he said he expected to be at Alberton next year.

Amid mounting criticism over Hinkley’s coaching from fans, Koch said earlier this week “every single person’s role” would be assessed at the end of the season, which has seen the Power drop out of finals contention after back-to-back preliminary final runs.

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Koch spoke on 5AA radio on Monday and conceded the club was “not afraid to make change.” His comment from him, “turn it around or watch out”, fueled speculation there could be sweeping changes to the club’s football department.

But Koch confirmed to 7 News Adelaide on Thursday night Hinkley would remain at Alberton.

Port Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley with Chairman David Koch.Source: Twitter

“Obviously, for all of us, this season has been a major disappointment … (and) as we always do, we’ll thoroughly assess our football program at season’s end,” Koch told 7 News Adelaide.

“But, as the club has maintained all year, Ken Hinkley is contracted and will be our coach in 2023

“Prior to this season, Ken led us to two consecutive preliminary finals.

“Some will argue we should make a change based on our performance this season alone and that Ken has never taken the team to a grand finale.

“But we base decisions on all the information in front of us.

“We believe Ken gives us the best chance of successfully rebounding next season, of successfully attracting new talent and football department resources to make us better.”

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Speaking on Fox Footy’s AFL 360 on Thursday night, St Kilda champion Nick Riewoldt said it was a “big backflip” from Koch that should never have happened.

“I like it from the point of view that it provides fodder for all of us to talk about, but Ken Hinkley must get to the end of the week and think: ‘What did I just go and endure – and for what?’” a passionate Riewoldt said on AFL 360.

“So Kochie comes out on Monday saying what he said after the CEO, the footy manager, everyone else in the club has been on the same page – and five days later he backflips on the statement? He could’ve said on Monday what he said tonight, but he chose not to – and by omission, he put Ken Hinkley under ridiculous, undue pressure this week. It was really poor.

“I think Ken’s probably got a reasonable tolerance for it now after all of this time, but I’d be scratching my head.”

Hinkley is Port’s second longest serving coach, behind the club’s sole AFL premiership coach in Mark Williams.

In his 10 seasons in charge, Hinkley has steered the Power to finals in four seasons and has a 60.8 per cent win rate from his 212 games as coach.

When asked directly on AFL 360 if he felt any uncertainty as coach after Koch’s “turn it around or watch out” comments, Hinkley replied: “No, no I don’t”.

Koch statement awkward for Hinkley? | 01:36

“David (Koch) himself has said that he expects me to be coaching Port Adelaide in 2023, as I do and that’s what I am preparing for,” he said.

“I think I’ve been given enough assurances (he’ll see out his deal) through the season, not that I needed them to be fair.

“We all get there’s a finish line for everyone at some point.

“But as I sit here tonight, I’m more than confident that that won’t be at the end of 2022.”

Hinkley said despite the outside pressure, his players “100 per cent” continued to back him in for an 11th season in 2023 – and final year of his current contract — saying:

“My players, they play for me every week. They play for us every week.