A late withdrawal from your AFL Fantasy teams an hour before the match hurts like a boot to the guts, Mr Fantasy says
THE LATE withdrawal continues to be the bane of all Dream Teamers. I think we are all pretty good at copping an out on a Thursday night, but an omission an hour before the game hurts like a boot in the guts.
My AFL Fantasy Elite side was going along swimmingly last week before news filtered through that gun Eagles forward Josh Kennedy was out with a calf complaint.
Usually I'd have an emergency longing to make me proud, but the bye round certainly put paid to that.
I lost by just 14 points and have received a stack of emails from my rival throughout the week. Some of his correspondence has been amusing, including a photoshopped picture of me in North Melbourne gear - a team who has also struggled to hammer the final nail in games this year.
A victory is a must this week, and I will be looking for an improved performance from my AFL Fantasy Elite ruckman Ivan Maric, a man clearly playing below his best.
Big Ivan has scored between just 62 and 68 in his past month of footy, so facing off against his old club could be just the tonic for a return to form.
He strikes me as a guy who would be very keen to show the Crows what they are missing out on. Stats back up that theory.
In his first game against Adelaide last season, Maric finished with 122 AFL Fantasy points – the second-highest tally of his career and just two points off his personal best.
The man with the mullet has not reached triple figures in any of his nine games this season, which may surprise many.
It is in stark contrast to his AFL Fantasy form in 2012, ending the year with an average of 98 and as the 26th highest points scorer, a tremendous feat for a ruckman.
Here's hoping for no late withdrawals and a 100-plus score from the big man at Tigerland.
Mr Fantasy's trade recommendations
Ins: Thomas Nicholls (Gold Coast), Travis Cloke (Collingwood)
Zac Smith – the No.1 ruck choice at the Suns before a knee injury struck – has left a fair hole in Gold Coast's line-up, but young big man Nicholls has highlighted how deep the talent runs at the club. He has scored 76 and 113 in two games to date, and looks a very likely type. A straight swap for North Melbourne's Majak Daw looks ideal. I've penciled in Cloke for a big second half of the year, and you can get him at a very fair price this round ($429,800).
Outs: Majak Daw (North Melbourne), Lachie Whitfield (GWS)
One big score against the Bulldogs in round seven (128) has masked poor scores for Daw on either side of that breakout game. He is worth $239,700, and I don't think that figure will rise all that much. Whitfield was a sub last week and the first-year star may start to tire as the season progresses. He still has good currency ($287,100).