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Match preview: Western Bulldogs v Gold Coast

Pick a Winner: WB v GC Duck and Browny preview the Bulldogs v Suns
Zaine Cordy will have his work cut out on Tom Lynch - AFL,Western Bulldogs,Gold Coast Suns
Zaine Cordy will have his work cut out on Tom Lynch

SUMMARY
The Ballarat clash looms as a tipster's nightmare, as both sides are yet to show a consistent form line this season. While the Dogs returned to the winners list against Carlton last week, the performance was far from convincing against a Blues side that hasn't registered a win this year. A positive was the return to form of Marcus Bontempelli, and the superstar playmaker will lead the side in the absence of injured skipper Easton Wood. He'll be opposed to an in-form Gold Coast midfield featuring David Swallow, Jarryd Lyons and Lachie Weller. The important trio will need to be at their best with co-captains Tom Lynch and Steven May both missing through injury. With the Bulldogs employing an uncontested game plan and Suns proficient in contested possession, whoever gets the game on their terms will more than likely win the game.

WHERE AND WHEN: Mars Stadium, Saturday, May 5, 1.45pm AEST
TV AND RADIO: Click here for broadcast guide

LAST FIVE MEETINGS
R18, 2017, Western Bulldogs 16.14 (110) d Gold Coast Suns 8.8 (56) at Cazalys Stadium
R17, 2016, Western Bulldogs 15.17 (107) d Gold Coast Suns 8.11 (59) at Cazalys Stadium
R15, 2015, Western Bulldogs 14.11 (95) d Gold Coast Suns 11.7 (73) at Cazalys Stadium
R17, 2014, Western Bulldogs 13.16 (94) d Gold Coast Suns 9.12 (66) at Cazalys Stadium
R10, 2014, Gold Coast Suns 18.11 (119) d Western Bulldogs 10.14 (74) at Metricon Stadium

THE SIX POINTS
1. It will be a contest between the best and worst tackling sides this season, with Gold Coast averaging an AFL-best 72.5 per game and the Bulldogs a lowly 56.2.

2. Another area the Dogs have struggled in this season is contested possessions, where they're ranked last with an average of 125.3 per game. The Suns on the other hand have been impressive, ranked fifth with an average of 153.2.

3. This is the second match played at Mars Stadium after the Bulldogs lost to Port Adelaide in round 22, 2017. So far this season the Suns have played away at five different venues for three wins.

4. The Bulldogs have taken more marks inside 50 this season than any other side, averaging 14.3. The Suns have taken the fewest with just 8.3 per game.

5. The Dogs have dominated the Suns recently, winning the last four contests. Gold Coast last won in round 10, 2014. In total the teams have played nine times with the Dogs winning seven.

6. Marcus Bontempelli is the highest ranked Bulldog in the Schick AFL Player Ratings, with the superstar playmaker in 11th spot on 528.6 points. Jarrad Lyons is the best-placed Sun, with the midfielder in 22nd position (496.8).

IT'S A BIG WEEK FOR … Zaine Cordy
With Easton Wood joining fellow important defenders Dale Morris and Marcus Adams on the club's hefty injury list, Zaine Cordy will need to hold together a young and inexperienced Dogs backline.

PREDICTION: Western Bulldogs by 15 points.

 
The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs