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Match preview: Gold Coast v North Melbourne

Michael Whiting  February 26, 2013 2:14 PM

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Recruit Ben Jacobs was impressive in his first official game with North last week

WHERE AND WHEN
Townsville Football Ground, March 2, 3.30pm
 
MISSING
Gold Coast:
Nathan Bock (leg), Seb Tape (knee), Trent McKenzie
North Melbourne: North almost has a full bill of health, with only Leigh Adams (shoulder), Nathan Grima (back) and Majak Daw (knee) in doubt.
 
LAST WEEK
Gold Coast:
The Suns trotted out a near full-strength team against Hawthorn and notched an after-the-siren win, before taking out some centre-square class in Zac Smith, Gary Ablett and Karmichael Hunt and suffering badly against the Brisbane Lions. Their best work looked a step up from last year.

North Melbourne: Two matches and two tight wins for the Roos against Melbourne and Richmond puts them in with a good chance of advancing to the final. Majak Daw had everyone talking with his athleticism in the air and on the ground as he pushes for a round one debut.

WHAT THEY SAY
Gold Coast:
" Our pre-season focus, like most sides' is, is about slowing the opposition down, I thought we did that in relative terms (last week). We want to get off to a good start for the season so we can get some confidence and belief into these boys." - coach Guy McKenna

North Melbourne: "You want to expose your players to that winning feeling in tight games as often as you can. You can practice at training all you like, but until you've some genuine pressure you don't know how you're going to go, so it's always good to come out the right side." - coach Brad Scott

WE SAY
Gold Coast:
Watch for the Suns to come out blazing. The match is on the back-end of their two-day community camp, and with a humid 32 degrees expected, North can expect a hot reception from the locals.

North Melbourne:
Brad Scott's men are just one of four undefeated teams and now have a sniff of a Grand Final appearance. It may be only a pre-season competition, but for teams expected to be on the fringe of the eight, winning form is good form.