Don’t panic: Preview of Round 1 fantasy lockout 2009 – FanFooty
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Don’t panic: Preview of Round 1 fantasy lockout 2009

All sorts of players you’ve barely heard of are suddenly of fantasy interest as the deadline looms for teams.

With the final week of the NAB series out of the way, the next week and a half lies open for fantasy coaches to prepare for what I have been calling the 160 minutes of maelstrom: the two hours and 40 minutes between the announcement of AFL teams for round 1 at 5pm AEST on Thursday March 26, and the beginning of the first match at 7.40pm when the AFL Dream Team and Super Coach Web sites will “lock out” participants from amending their teams.

This leads us to wonder, naturally, about exactly who is going to be selected in those teams. Complicating matters is the staggered rollout of the teams.

Thursday 26 March: Teams of 22 at Wednesday 5pm, final teamsheets at Thursday 6.55pm

Richmond v Carlton: Thankfully we are going to have plenty of warning about whether Chris Yarran and Mitch Robinson are playing. Those of you hoping to slot in Angus Graham and Sam Jacobs as your #3 and #4 set-and-forget bench rucks will also get full assurances. Don’t be surprised if Jacobs is named as an emergency and then comes in for the underdone Kreuzer. Alex Rance may also make the emergencies list but there’s little chance of him starting. I don’t think there are any other likely late changes for either side at this early stage.

Friday 27 March: Teams of 22 at Wednesday 5pm

Hawthorn v Geelong: Plenty of intrigue around both team selections, with more than a little interest in the emergencies. With Robert Campbell, Campbell Brown, Luke Hodge and Grant Birchall all possible late withdrawals from their lingering injuries, the emergency list for the Hawks will get a workout from fantasy coaches. Expect to see Brendan Whitecross in the selected 22, probably on the bench, with Beau Dowler as an emergency to cover the backline along with Ryan Schoenmakers, with Josh P. Kennedy or Garry Moss to provide emergency depth for the midfield. If Schoenmakers has to play then the Hawks will lose big. On the Cats side, expect either or both of Dan McKenna and Jeremy Laidler to appear in the emergencies if not named in the 22, depending on what the match committee decide to do to replace Josh Hunt. If David Wojcinski is named after his limited preseason he’s a prime candidate for a late withdrawal, especially if Simon Hogan only makes the emergencies, as would Cameron Mooney if Travis Varcoe or huge longshot Mitch W. Brown is lurking in the 25. Overall, though, given the importance of this game I wouldn’t expect a lot of late withdrawals as both clubs will want to put their best foot forward.

Saturday 28 March: Teams of 22 at Thursday 5pm (no squads expected on Wednesday)

Collingwood v Adelaide: The battle for the 22nd spot at Collingwood between Ben Johnson and Dayne Beams will provide much interest, but it’s on the Crows side where a lot more fantasy emphasis lies. Will Andy Otten keep out Patrick Dangerfield? Is Jared Petrenko going to play in a team with Jarrhan Jacky allegedly penciled in already? Can we believe the Taylor Walker hype and is Trent Hentschel fit enough to please the notoriously finicky Neil Craig?

Brisbane v West Coast: All eyes will be on the Lions bench where fantasy coaches will hope to see the name of Daniel Rich. Some of the more adventurous coaches will be taking a chance on Matthew Leuenberger as a starter and will want to see if Jamie Charman gets up, while others will want to know if Simon Black plays or whether there’s a place for Albert Proud or James Polkinghorne. For the Eagles most concern would be over Chris Masten and Brad Ebert who are both sore, and Dean Cox who is carrying a broken cheekbone. Mitchell Brown is firmly entrenched at CHB in this 22, no problem.

St Kilda v Sydney: It’s a case of last men standing with both of these lists, with Sydney scratching to find a decent 22 to name, and the Saints struggling yet again with multiple soft tissue injuries all over their squad. Nick Riewoldt will play but Jason Gram, Justin Koschitzke, Steven King, Max Hudghton and Matt Maguire may not, leaving the door open for obscure fantasy smokies like Jack Steven, Tom Lynch and the redoubtable Zac Dawson. Most interest at the Swans focuses on the vacant #2 ruck position with Mike Pyke gaining quickly on Jesse White, and Daniel Currie apparently no chance through injury. I can’t see anyone getting excited about the fantasy point-scoring potential of this game in any case, can you?

Sunday 29 March: Squads of 25 at Thursday 5pm (no squads expected on Wednesday)

Melbourne v North Melbourne: Here’s where it starts getting very tricky. Jack Grimes has been locked into the Dream Teams of all of the Melbourne players, according to Cale Morton speaking last Friday on SEN, but his late withdrawal on the weekend with “soreness” is worrying. Dean Bailey may also decide to name Matthew Whelan in the 22 to allow him time to prove his fitness with the calf injury he’s been carrying (or just to play silly buggers) and include small backmen like Kyle Cheney and/or Simon Buckley in the extended bench to cover for him. The Demons have five tall defenders all vying for selection with not much to choose between them – James Frawley, Stefan Martin, Colin Garland, Jared Rivers and Matthew Warnock – and can probably only play three of them (despite what I said in the v7.0 projection post!), though they will likely name four in their 25. They will probably also name Aaron Davey in the squad despite his heel injury on the weekend, leaving another late withdrawal candidate, maybe with a smokie like Nevilla Jetta to jump from behind a cloud to nick his spot. With all of those shenanigans going on, I think we’ll at least get clarity on the #2 Melbourne ruck, with Jake Spencer named instead of John Meesen. As for the Kangaroos… oh dear. They could name a squad of 38 and leave us with just as much a sense of helplessness as when they name a 25. Only Dean Laidley knows what evil lurks in the mind of Dean Laidley. If both Liam Anthony and Jack Ziebell are named on the extended bench and in your fantasy team, pick up your rosary beads and start working them like a CWA regional president. If the Junkyard Dog completely screws us by also naming Nathan Grima in the bench of seven, time to fire up the cement truck and load up with chicken manure for the trip to Arden St. I would expect Grima and one of Anthony or Ziebell to be safely ensconced in the starting 18, however. Fool me twice, shame on me!

Port Adelaide v Essendon: I expect the Power’s 22 to be fairly static, with the Robbie Gray/Wade Thompson decision and the Paul Stewart/Jacob Surjan coinflip being the only outstanding matters. Unfortunately neither will be resolved by lockout with all four likely to make the 25 we will have by lockout, so picking Thompson will be a case of blind faith – unless Choco Williams decides to take pity on us long-suffering fantasy coaches and commits to Thompson unequivocally through the press. As for Essendon, figuring out which of Scott Gumbleton, Jay Neagle and Scott Lucas will play is not so much a matter of faith as Ouija boards and chicken entrails. The ghost of Kevin Sheedy and his Windy Hill flu hangs over this list, and there will be no guarantees even if Matthew Knights makes the usual assurances at media conferences, given the chronic nature of the physical ailments each of these three continue to suffer through. Michael Hurley or David Zaharakis may very well be named in the extended bench but miss out due to being cover for senior players like Bachar Houli or Jobe Watson. Hayden Skipworth may also give us a scare by being on the bench, but expect him to play.

Fremantle v Western Bulldogs: The Bulldogs are reasonably settled at this point, with the health of Tom Williams the only sticking point meaning that he’ll probably be named along with Andrejs Everitt and the fitter of the two making the cut. Jarrad Grant will probably excite us by an appearance in the extended bench but his likelihood of surviving the cut is low at this stage. On the Fremantle side… well, you tell me. Sure, we all want Nick Suban and Greg Broughton to play, and they haven’t got much in the depth chart left to leapfrog, but can Mark Harvey really play three debutantes in the one match, given that he’s almost honour-bound to play Stephen Hill? The answer, looking at the Docker injury list, is that he may have to. Expect to see Suban and Broughton on that extended bench alongside cod-ordinary names like Scott Thornton, Clayton Hinkley and Steven Dodd. Good luck if you decide to commit to either of the two youngsters, because you’re taking a big risk.

Above all, don’t panic! How many rookies from Sunday teams are you starting and/or putting on your bench? Are you picking any players purely because you are more confident of their round 1 selection? How fearful are you of sabotage by the likes of Laidley, Bailey and Harvey? Tell me how conservative you’re taking round 1 lockout in the comments.

86 Comments

  1. Rupe

    March 17, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    Spoke to Andy Otten yesterday, he said he is guaranteed a rd.1 spot if Ben Rutten is out and may still play as a MID if Truck plays.

  2. Charlie

    March 17, 2009 at 2:58 pm

    Rupe – but how long can he keep the spot? That’s the information we need. Round 1 then out is the worse possible scenario for a DT coach – sucks you in to buying him, then left with a pup!

  3. sam

    March 17, 2009 at 5:18 pm

    wil any of these players play round 1?
    stephen hill
    jack ziebell
    daniel rich
    They are all on my field.
    thoughts?
    thanks

  4. Burley

    March 17, 2009 at 5:24 pm

    I hear an echo Sam, thanks for asking twice but i would say your best bet is to ask Mark Harvey, Dean Laidley and Michael Voss, they should no for sure.

  5. sam

    March 17, 2009 at 5:31 pm

    thanks for that advice. i only wanted other peoples opinions, just like every one else in this forum

  6. sam

    March 17, 2009 at 5:40 pm

    cross/pendlebury/dal santo/selwood/ball/burgoyne/gibbs/mitchell. Which one???
    thoughts?
    cheers

  7. peppers

    March 17, 2009 at 5:52 pm

    I’m starting to detect some desparation from some of u guys. You should have done your research weeks ago!

  8. big horse

    March 17, 2009 at 5:54 pm

    I am not a big fan of Laidley’s, but even I am putting in Ziebell, he is this years Palmer, someone who will win the rising star in a team that wont make the finals

  9. big horse

    March 17, 2009 at 6:03 pm

    With the ridiculous scheduling of round 1 and if anyone just happens to be in a MEETING or at WORK in the narrow Thursday afternoon window which will invariably not work for those wanting to make changes…how about the provider allowing people to change anyone in their teams except for any Richmond or Carlton players who are provided on Wednesday night anyway, up until the start of Friday nights game. Then lock everyone out for the rest of the weekend

  10. ETOH

    March 17, 2009 at 6:27 pm

    just pull a sickie on thurs bighorse :)

  11. saladin

    March 17, 2009 at 10:05 pm

    hey, that’s my bloody photo from the North v Dons praccie match that you’ve ripped off! LOL, give it back monty! or, pay me some royalties. hehehehehe!

  12. ben

    March 18, 2009 at 1:43 am

    yeah. let’s hope they have some spare server space lined up for thurs – unlike last year when i got locked out all day due to crashes.
    i’m sweating on the teams cause after splashing out on the ABS midfield cox, i plan to start hill, ziebell, grimes. maybe rich, if he plays round 1. risky business, like a back-related hamstring

  13. Charlie

    March 18, 2009 at 8:13 am

    GRIMES injured!

    Can we panic now?

  14. Brad

    March 18, 2009 at 8:46 am

    Charlie,
    Dont think we need to panic.
    I think 99% of teams contain Grimes anyway so it will just be a break even.
    Has anyone got the balls to keep him on their bench until he returns?

  15. mEnty

    March 18, 2009 at 9:01 am

    Link for Grimes injury?

  16. MrMagoo

    March 18, 2009 at 9:17 am

    Other rookies that are a strong chance to play Rd.1 : W. Thompson (port), S.Sidebottom (Col’wood), and T.Walker and A.Otten (Crows)

  17. Brad

    March 18, 2009 at 9:33 am

    Hey Menty,
    Cant find a link but from the Hun this morning:
    Grimes Back Woe
    Melbourne midfielder Jack Grimes will miss the start of season after suffering another back injury.
    The Dees insist the teenagers latest problem is in a different spot to the one thast derailed his first year.

  18. mEnty

    March 18, 2009 at 10:09 am

    Thanks Brad – time for a restructure..

  19. Brad

    March 18, 2009 at 10:23 am

    You me and about 250,000 others..lol

  20. Charlie

    March 18, 2009 at 11:04 am

    @ Brad – that’s what I thought, but Grimes was only in about 25% of teams on fan planner. Surprising!

  21. Heater

    March 18, 2009 at 11:21 am

    Ok, so Grimes is out indefinately by the sounds of things (backs can be tricky to assess in regards to recovery). What do we do?
    1. Keep Him. $188K is alot to have on your bench especially if we don’t really know how long he’ll be out.

    2. Swap him. $188K is not that much to be able to afford a player with big point scoring chances. Does this make Cheney or Frawley certainties or do with go with someone else?

    Whats your thoughts?

  22. 'Cho

    March 18, 2009 at 11:39 am

    I reckon Cheney is a real chance but at the same price as Grimes, Lachie Henderson and Collier are worth a look.

    I really wanted to put Hansen in the side, but don;t know if I’ll have the guts come lockout…

  23. Brad

    March 18, 2009 at 1:04 pm

    Very surprising Charlie.
    The last 200 or so teams that i have looked at had a back line of:

    Houlihan, Raines, Grimes & Hill.

    It was like the Ground Hog Day back line.

  24. Pete

    March 18, 2009 at 4:16 pm

    Backline – Scotland?? Haven’t heard much has he been playing for the Blues??

  25. Pete

    March 18, 2009 at 4:18 pm

    Backline – Scotland?? Haven’t heard much has he been playing for the Blues??

    XHTML: You can use these tags:

  26. Evolved

    March 19, 2009 at 11:58 am

    Don’t have Grimes and i don’t have Raines, and i’m still sweet!

    Hopefully the young fella can make it back though!

  27. Macca

    March 19, 2009 at 4:30 pm

  28. Joffa Burn

    March 20, 2009 at 12:03 pm

    A.Browne will play round 1 for Richmond, Graham will miss out. Z.Dawson will play round 1 also for saints.

  29. barrycrocker

    March 20, 2009 at 10:02 pm

    what about skipworth can he get good sc scores or just dt. Not sure he’s disposals are good enough.

  30. Muppet Executioner

    March 21, 2009 at 11:48 am

    I’ll put my balls on the line and guaran-damm-tee that Ziebel is picked – Laidley’s not a dickhead – he just talks like one. Since that guy topped himslf after having an argument with him at the St Kilda game in 2006 – he’s really pulled his head in

  31. tom

    March 21, 2009 at 12:59 pm

    ok monty, which of these players do you think will play?

    lachie henderson
    stephen hill
    michael hurley
    hamish hartlett
    jack ziebell

    thanks

  32. phil

    March 22, 2009 at 12:50 am

    hi guys first post love your work here.
    i hear foley is on crutches and very doubtful?

  33. Brad

    March 22, 2009 at 4:02 pm

    Has anyone else experienced any problem with the super coach site?
    I just went in to make some alterations to my side to find that i had apparently selected 33 of 30 players, McIntosh and Skipworth were listed in every line of my team and i was missing some key players in my line up.
    I tried to clear the side and start again only to be told that i had to pick a full squad of 30 players and only had 50K in the bank. I have advised support but i am very very concerned that this will happen to someone during the maelstrom period and they will not earn any points for round 1 because of this glitch, i have been lucky enough to have caught it in time, i hope, but be careful guys, be confident in your choices by Thursday and try not to make any changes when the site is in meltdown Thursday afternoon or you REGRET it big time!!!!

  34. stevie

    March 23, 2009 at 5:23 pm

    J Zeibell all the way!

  35. Join in the Chorus

    March 23, 2009 at 10:16 pm

    Hey guys, I had the same problem Brad and went back in today and it was okay cept for the fact that all the Kangas players were now from St. Kilda, lol! If they’re having glitches and trouble now, I don’t wanna know what will happen on Thursday!

    Good luck guys.

  36. D. Cox

    March 26, 2009 at 7:04 pm

    I survived the maelstrom. Did you?

    You better have me in your side or your’e Know_here

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