Max King and Tim Membrey celebrate a goal during the AAMI Community Series match between North Melbourne and St Kilda. Picture: AFL Photos

ST KILDA defenders Jimmy Webster and Dougal Howard look set to miss the start of the season after a bruising win over North Melbourne in the AAMI Community Series on Sunday.

The Saints dominated early and resisted a second-half fightback from the Roos as they squeezed out an 11.18 (84) to 10.5 (65) win in their final tune-up for the home-and-away season.

SAINTS v KANGAROOS Full match coverage and stats

But Howard limped off late with an apparent hamstring injury and the fall-out will include Webster coming under Match Review Officer (MRO) scrutiny for a late bump that left Jy Simpkin dazed after he kicked the ball into North's forward line.

Webster leapt off the ground and collected Simpkin's head with a hip-and-shoulder bump during the first quarter of the clash at RSEA Park.


Kangaroos players rushed to remonstrate with Webster and a melee spilled over the boundary line while Simpkin lay on the ground.

The 25-year-old, who was concussed twice last season, was attended to by medical staff before eventually walking off the field and was soon ruled out of action for the rest of the match.

The first-quarter flashpoint occurred during a fast-paced opening as Max King's two early majors helped the Saints to a 13-point lead at quarter-time.


St Kilda dominated the second term but were wasteful, managing just 3.10 from 21 forward entries as the lead grew to 33 points by the main break.

North took advantage of a strong breeze in the third quarter, with Nick Larkey kicking two of their five unanswered goals as they cut the deficit to just three points by the final change.

Larkey's third major put the Kangaroos in front early in a hotly contested last quarter before St Kilda steadied.


King, Tim Membrey, Mitch Owens and Cooper Sharman kicked two goals each, while first-round draft pick Darcy Wilson (24), Nasaiah Wanganeen-Milera (29) and former Port Adelaide defender Riley Bonner (30) impressed.

North's No.4 draft pick Zane Duursma showcased his strong marking and kicked two goals, as did Cameron Zurhaar, while ex-Carlton playmaker Zac Fisher (36 disposals) and best-and-fairest winner Harry Sheezel (32) were busy.

Saints young gun Mattaes Phillipou sat out the second half as a precautionary measure with a sore hip.


New faces
St Kilda draftee Darcy Wilson appears a near certainty for round one after another impressive display all over the ground, while axed Port Adelaide half back Riley Bonner again excelled and also looks ready to make his club debut. Lance Collard, Arie Schoenmaker and Hugo Garcia had some good moments for the Saints and look to be players of the future, while Liam Henry provided some spark after cross from Fremantle. For North, Zane Duursma showed plenty of good signs in his first proper hit out for the Roos while inexperienced defenders Toby Pink and Bigoa Nyuon were outclassed at times but showed some good signs. But the standout pair for the Roos, pleasingly for them, was recruits Zac Fisher and Dylan Stephens, who had 59 disposals between them had made plenty of surges forward from half back and the wing.


Round one chance
With injuries mounting for the Saints and Webster likely to cop a lengthy ban, Wilson and Bonner should come into calculations for a Saints debut in round one alongside big-name recruit Henry and possibly even youngsters Schoenmaker and Garcia. Ryan Byrnes did his chances no harm with a strong performance, finishing with 28 disposals. At the Kangas, top draftees Duursma and Colby McKercher are certain to play while Pink should fit into a backline that could also include the likes of Charlie Comben and Josh Goater due to injuries to Aiden Corr and Luke McDonald. Fisher and Stephens have already made an impact and will surely make their club debuts in round one.


Medical room
Howard cut an abject figure as he limped off the ground late in the game with what appeared to be a left hamstring injury, which looks likely to mean a delayed start to the season. The Roos will have their fingers crossed Simpkin recovers well from the brutal hit from Jimmy Webster, with a two-week break before their season opener boding well for him to be ready for round one. Phillipou sat out the final term as a precaution due to hip soreness.

Fantasy watch
In our depleted Fantasy forward lines where we're primarily hunting value, Zac Fisher (FWD, $623,000) looks like a low risk play in his defensive role. His tally of 36 disposals and 114 points was outstanding as he linked up with Harry Sheezel (DEF, $878,000), who finished with 107. For the Saints, Riley Bonner (MID, $463,000) racked up 30 disposals and 104 points down back with Nasiah Wanganeen-Milera (DEF. $824,000) also cracking the Fantasy ton. Mitch Owens (FWD, $667,000) was impressive kicking two goals to go with his 19 disposals, seven marks and five tackles for 103. North Melbourne will most likely debut Colby McKercher (MID, $297,000) in round one while Charlie Lazzaro (MID/FWD, $288,000) could be an on-field forward rookie-priced option after his 80-point game. Darcy Wilson (MID/FWD, $249,000) could join him in our forward lines as the Saints may unleash him on the wing. He was the best of the Draftees in this game with 97 Fantasy points. - Warnie from The Traders

ST KILDA      5.2   8.12   8.14   11.18 (84)  
NORTH MELBOURNE    3.1   4.2    9.5    10.5 (65)

St Kilda:
Sharman 2, Owens 2, Membrey 2, King 2, Marshall, Henry, Bonner
North Melbourne: Larkey 3, Zurhaar 2, Duursma 2, Stephenson, Goater, Coleman-Jones

St Kilda: Owens, Wilson, Bonner, Wanganeen-Milera, Byrnes
North Melbourne: Fisher, Stephens, Sheezel, Zurhaar, Larkey, Duursma

St Kilda: Howard (hamstring), Phillipou (hip)
North Melbourne: Simpkin (head)