Lachie Schultz, Clayton Oliver, Esava Ratugolea. Pictures: AFL Photos

WITH the 2024 Toyota AFL Premiership Season about to blast off, our experts have put their selectors' hats on to pick your club's team.

Who's in, who's out, who's injured, who's unlucky ... and who is up for a red-hot debut?

Did we get it right? Check it out.


First game: Round 1 v Gold Coast at Heritage Bank Stadium, March 16, 7.10pm AEST

B: Max Michalanney, Jordon Butts, Josh Worrell
HB: Brodie Smith, Mark Keane, Wayne Milera
C: Chayce Jones, Matt Crouch, Jake Soligo 
HF: Luke Pedlar, Taylor Walker, Izak Rankine
F: Ben Keays, Darcy Fogarty, Josh Rachele 
Foll: Reilly O'Brien, Jordan Dawson, Rory Laird
I/C: Mitch Hinge, Sam Berry, Lachlan Sholl, Lachlan Murphy, Ned McHenry
EMERG: James Borlase, Chris Burgess, Zac Taylor

NEW: Nil

UNAVAILABLE: Nick Murray (knee), Harry Schoenberg (Achilles tendon), Rory Sloane (eye), Riley Thilthorpe (knee)

NOTES: Daniel Curtin has battled knee soreness for six weeks, but he has now played a SANFL trial match and will push for selection soon, although round one might be too early. The loss of Thilthorpe means a smaller forward line full of speed and pressure, but Burgess is an option if the Crows want a third tall. Soligo played himself in after an ankle injury, proving he is ready with match minutes against West Coast. Likewise Sholl and Berry, who were excellent in wing and midfield roles respectively. Borlase is unlucky to miss with Keane returning from concussion. – Nathan Schmook


First game: Opening Round v Carlton at the Gabba, March 8, 6.40pm AEST

B: Ryan Lester, Harris Andrews, Brandon Starcevich
HB: Keidean Coleman, Jack Payne, Darcy Wilmot
C: Jarrod Berry, Hugh McCluggage, Jaspa Fletcher
HF: Lincoln McCarthy, Eric Hipwood, Cam Rayner
F: Charlie Cameron, Joe Daniher, Zac Bailey
Foll: Oscar McInerney, Lachie Neale, Josh Dunkley
I/C: James Madden, Cal Ah Chee, Dayne Zorko, Darcy Gardiner, Kai Lohmann
EMERG: James Tunstill, Jarryd Lyons, Darcy Fort

NEW: Nil

UNAVAILABLE: Will Ashcroft (knee), Tom Doedee (knee), Conor McKenna (hamstring)

NOTES: The Lions have a settled team entering Opening Round against Carlton, with just a few spots around the edges for coach Chris Fagan to decide on. McKenna has not been officially ruled out and might still return in time, but if he’s a week or two away, Madden has probably done enough to earn a bench spot. Gardiner has been trialled in the forward line, and although not totally convincing just yet, still provides a viable option at either end of the ground. Lohmann impressed against Sydney in the second pre-season match, although Tunstill and Lyons have strong claims for the final utility spot. - Michael Whiting

Darcy Gardiner and Eric Hipwood during Brisbane's clash with Sydney in the 2024 AAMI Community Series. Picture: AFL Photos

First game: Opening Round v Brisbane at the Gabba, March 8, 6.40pm AEST

B: Mitch McGovern, Lewis Young, Nic Newman
Jordan Boyd, Brodie Kemp, Adam Saad
Ollie Hollands, Adam Cerra, Blake Acres
Lachie Fogarty, Harry McKay, Matt Cottrell
Jesse Motlop, Charlie Curnow, Orazio Fantasia
Tom De Koning, Patrick Cripps, Sam Docherty
I/C: Matt Kennedy, David Cuningham, George Hewett, Alex Cincotta, Ashton Moir
EMERG: Zac Williams, Jaxon Binns, Marc Pittonet

NEW: Orazio Fantasia, Ashton Moir

UNAVAILABLE: Jack Silvagni (knee), Sam Walsh (back), Corey Durdin (hamstring), Elijah Hollands (suspended), Jack Martin (knee), Caleb Marchbank (illness), Jacob Weitering (calf), Matt Owies (calf)

NOTES: Carlton's injury list doesn't look promising. Expect the Blues to err on the side of caution with WalshDurdinMartinMarchbank and Owies, given none of those players featured in any AFL practice matches. Williams is another who would be unlikely, having only played in one VFL scratch match. However, he could take the place of Cincotta if deemed fit. Moir could be handed an AFL debut, maybe as the substitute, given the absence of several small forwards from the side and due to recruit Elijah Hollands' suspension. McKay looked good playing as the second ruck option across the pre-season campaign, which could spell bad news for Pittonet. - Riley Beveridge

Harry McKay tangles with Steven May during the AAMI Community Series match between Carlton and Melbourne at Ikon Park on February 28, 2024. Picture: Getty Images/AFL Photos

First game: Opening Round v Greater Western Sydney at Giants Stadium, March 9, 7.30pm AEDT

B: Jeremy Howe, Billy Frampton, Isaac Quaynor
HB: Brayden Maynard, Darcy Moore, Jack Crisp
C: Steele Sidebottom, Jordan De Goey, Josh Daicos
HF: Lachie Schultz, Brody Mihocek, Pat Lipinski
F: Jamie Elliott, Mason Cox, Bobby Hill
Foll: Darcy Cameron, Nick Daicos, Scott Pendlebury
I/C:  Tom Mitchell, Beau McCreery, Will Hoskin-Elliott, Fin MacraeOleg Markov
EMERG: John Noble, Ash Johnson, Reef McInnes

NEW: Lachie Schultz

UNAVAILABLE: Dan McStay (ACL), Nathan Murphy (concussion), Nathan Kreuger (hamstring)

NOTES: McStay's spot has been up for grabs all summer with McInnes and Johnson fighting for it all pre-season, but Collingwood might opt for a similar setup to last year's Grand Final to start the year. Neither player stamped themselves in the AAMI Community Series. Charlie Dean has made a late push to grab an Opening Round debut and will come under consideration, especially with Murphy unavailable. Lipinski has reclaimed his spot in the 22 over the summer. Macrae should get an opportunity, while Noble was impressive in February and could return after being squeezed out of the side last September, although Markov hasn't done much wrong. – Josh Gabelich


First game: Round 1 v Hawthorn at the MCG, March 16, 1.45pm AEDT

B: Andrew McGrath, Ben McKay, Jayden Laverde
HB: Mason Redman, Zach Reid, Nic Martin
Xavier Duursma, Zach Merrett, Elijah Tsatas
HF: Jake Stringer, Peter Wright, Archie Perkins
F: Jade Gresham, Kyle Langford, Jye Menzie
Todd Goldstein, Darcy Parish, Will Setterfield
I/C: Sam Durham, Jye Caldwell, Harrison Jones, Nik Cox, Nick Hind
EMERG: Dyson Heppell, Matt Guelfi, Nate Caddy

NEW: Ben McKay, Xavier Duursma, Jade Gresham, Todd Goldstein

UNAVAILABLE: Jordan Ridley (quad), Dylan Shiel (foot), Ben Hobbs (shoulder), Kaine Baldwin (foot), Jake Kelly (hamstring), Tex Wanganeen (foot), Jaiden Hunter (knee)

NOTES: The quad injury suffered by Ridley against the Cats is a massive blow for the Bombers, with Laverde and Cox shaping as his likely replacement with Baldwin sidelined. Heppell will also push for a spot in the 23, although the veteran missed the clash in Geelong. Sam Draper's only minutes in pre-season came in a VFL practice match on Friday, and Essendon could be conservative with its ruckman given the arrival of Goldstein. No.10 draft pick Caddy missed both pre-season matches due to soreness but will be eyeing an early-season debut. Goldstein is one of four recruits to feature, alongside McKay, Duursma and Gresham. Hind has switched to a role as a forward and has looked lively when given his chance. – Dejan Kalinic

Jade Gresham in action during the AAMI Community Series match between Essendon and Geelong at GMHBA Stadium on March 1, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

First game: Round 1 v Brisbane at Optus Stadium, March 17, 3.50pm AWST

B: Luke Ryan, Alex Pearce, Corey Wagner 
HB: James Aish, Oscar McDonald, Jordan Clark  
C: Jeremy Sharp, Hayden Young, Matthew Johnson
HF: Michael Frederick, Josh Treacy, Sam Switkowski
F: Luke Jackson, Jye Amiss, Michael Walters 
Foll: Sean Darcy, Caleb Serong, Andrew Brayshaw 
I/C: Nat Fyfe, Jaeger O'Meara, Ethan Hughes, Cooper Simpson, Tom Emmett  
EMERG: Karl Worner, Bailey Banfield, Neil Erasmus

NEW: Oscar McDonald, Jeremy Sharp, Cooper Simpson 

UNAVAILABLE: Brennan Cox (leg), Brandon Walker (knee), Nathan O'Driscoll (knee), Heath Chapman (hamstring)  

NOTES: The Dockers need an injection of speed and risk in their backline, and Wagner could be that player in the absence of Walker. On the assumption Cox is not passed fit, McDonald is a form replacement, while Hughes is required as another lockdown option against a dangerous Brisbane forward line. Simpson's class through the pre-season makes him a worthy debutant, with his skill in the front half shaping as valuable asset for the team. There is a call to make between Voss and Treacy, but Treacy's body of work over the pre-season should see him get the nod. – Nathan Schmook

Josh Treacy is spoiled by Charlie Dixon and Jordon Sweet during the AAMI Community Series match between Port Adelaide and Fremantle at Alberton Oval on March 1, 2024. Picture: Getty Images/AFL Photos

First game: Round 1 v St Kilda at GMHBA Stadium, March 16, 7.30pm AEDT

B: Mark O'Connor, Sam De Koning, Zach Guthrie
HB: Tom Stewart, Jack Henry, Max Holmes
C: Mark Blicavs, Patrick Dangerfield, Zac Tuohy
HF: Gryan Miers, Jeremy Cameron, Brad Close
F: Tyson Stengle, Tom Hawkins, Ollie Henry
Foll: Rhys Stanley, Mitch Duncan, Tom Atkins
I/C: Tanner Bruhn, Jed Bewes, Jake Kolodjashnij, Jack Bowes, Jhye Clark
EMERG: Shannon Neale, Connor O'Sullivan, Shaun Mannagh

NEW: Nil

UNAVAILABLE: Cam Guthrie (quad), Gary Rohan (ankle)

NOTES: Duncan has moved to half-back over the pre-season and looked impressive, while he could rotate on the ball as well. Blicavs will play multiple roles like he has done for a long time. Bruhn, Holmes and Clark all look ready to take the next step. O'Sullivan has turned heads over the pre-season and won't be far off selection, neither will mature-age recruit Mannagh. Henry is back to full fitness and set to play in defence, while Neale has made progress over the pre-season and could play early. – Josh Gabelich

Jack Henry during Geelong's clash with Brisbane in round 19, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

First game: Opening Round v Richmond at Heritage Bank Stadium, March 9, 3.20pm AEST

B: Sean Lemmens, Sam Collins, Connor Budarick
HB: Wil Powell, Charlie Ballard, Alex Sexton
C: Brandon Ellis, Noah Anderson, Brayden Fiorini
HF: Ben Ainsworth, Jack Lukosius, Bailey Humphrey
F: Nick Holman, Ben King, Tom Berry
Foll: Jarrod Witts, Matt Rowell, Touk Miller
I/C: Mac Andrew, Sam Flanders, David Swallow, Darcy Macpherson, Levi Casboult
EMERG: Bodhi Uwland, Joel Jeffrey, Sam Clohesy

NEW: Nil

UNAVAILABLE: James Tsitas (suspension), Malcolm Rosas Jnr (quad), Jed Walter (collarbone), Lachie Weller (knee)

NOTES: Damien Hardwick is far from settling on his best team to play Richmond next Saturday after his Suns were soundly beaten by Greater Western Sydney in their most recent pre-season game. Budarick has earned his spot in defence, doing enough to edge Uwland, while Berry might have done enough at the other end of the ground as a small pressure forward alongside Holman and Macpherson. Andrew has proven himself in defence but played inside the forward 50 against the Giants and could be deployed at either end. - Michael Whiting

Damien Hardwick speaks to his players during the AAMI Community Series match between Gold Coast and GWS at Manuka Oval on February 29, 2024. Picture: Getty Images/AFL Photos

First game: Opening Round v Collingwood at Giants Stadium, March 9, 7.30pm AEDT

B: Connor Idun, Sam Taylor, Jack Buckley
Lachie Whitfield, Harry Himmelberg, Lachie Ash
C: Jacob Wehr, Stephen Coniglio, Xavier O'Halloran
Toby Greene, Jake Riccardi, Brent Daniels
F: Aaron Cadman, Jesse Hogan, Toby Bedford
FOLL: Kieren Briggs, Tom Green, Josh Kelly
I/C: Callan Ward, Ryan Angwin, Harvey Thomas, Josh Fahey, Callum Brown
Nick Haynes, James Peatling, Leek Aleer

NEW: Harvey Thomas

UNAVAILABLE: Darcy Jones (illness), Braydon Preuss (back), Isaac Cumming (quad), Finn Callaghan (shoulder), Phoenix Gothard (illness), James Leake (quad), Harry Perryman (hamstring), Adam Kennedy (knee)

NOTES: It's a settled and maturing Greater Western Sydney side. Wehr and O'Halloran are favourites to get the nod on both wings, given the absence of Cumming and Callaghan. However, Haynes is another option having spent the majority of the summer training higher up the ground. Cadman comes into the team in place of Keeffe, meaning Riccardi will have to take the reins as a second ruck option behind Briggs. There could be an AFL debut for Thomas, who has impressed across the summer, while Angwin could be the substitute to provide some run. Perryman is making a late charge, but will need to prove his fitness before he's considered. Jones would be in contention, but has missed both pre-season practice matches. - Riley Beveridge

Aaron Cadman takes a mark during the AAMI Community Series match between Greater Western Sydney and Gold Coast at Manuka Oval on February 29, 2024. Picture: Getty Images

First game: Round 1 v Essendon at the MCG, March 16, 1.45pm AEDT

B: Jarman Impey, Sam Frost, Jack Scrimshaw
HB: Josh Weddle, James Sicily, Karl Amon
C: Harry Morrison, James Worpel, Massimo D'Ambrosio
HF: Dylan Moore, Mabior Chol, Blake Hardwick
F: Jack Ginnivan, Mitch Lewis, Luke Breust
Foll: Ned Reeves, Jai Newcombe, Cam Mackenzie
I/C: Connor Macdonald, Conor Nash, Jack Gunston, Henry Hustwaite, Nick Watson
EMERG: Josh Ward, Finn Maginness, Lloyd Meek

NEW: Mabior Chol, Jack Ginnivan, Jack Gunston, Massimo D'Ambrosio, Nick Watson

UNAVAILABLE: Will Day (foot), Changkuoth Jiath (hamstring), James Blanck (knee), Chad Wingard (Achilles), Denver Grainger-Barras (turf toe), Bailey Macdonald (leg), Cooper Stephens (Achilles)

NOTES: Sam Mitchell doesn't have a lot of wriggle room thanks to a horror injury run over the pre-season. Former Bomber D'Ambrosio has done everything right since arriving at the club and gets a run against his former side. Fellow recruits Chol, Ginnivan and the returning Gunston make up a new-look forward line alongside Hardwick, who will spend some time in attack this season. Moore appears on track to play after a bout of glandular fever. Ward was quiet on Saturday against the Bulldogs and could be the unlucky one to miss out given the Hawks' plethora of mids, while Morrison returns after being managed for the AAMI Community Series match. Exciting youngsters Mackenzie and Hustwaite are likely to be given more opportunities in the middle after strong form in the practice matches. No.5 draft pick Watson showed enough to ensure he'll line up in round one. – Brandon Cohen


First game: Opening Round v Sydney at the SCG, March 7, 7.30pm AEDT

B: Adam Tomlinson, Steven May, Christian Salem
HB: Trent Rivers, Jake Lever, Jake Bowey
C: Caleb Windsor, Clayton Oliver, Ed Langdon
HF: Harrison Petty, Bayley Fritsch, Alex Neal-Bullen
F: Jack Billings, Jacob van Rooyen, Tom Sparrow 
Foll: Max Gawn, Jack Viney, Christian Petracca
I/C: Blake Howes, Bailey Laurie, Judd McVee, Kade Chandler, Josh Schache
EMERG: Tom McDonald, Kynan Brown, Taj Woewodin

NEW: Jack Billings, Caleb Windsor, Blake Howes

UNAVAILABLE: Kysaiah Pickett (suspended), Ben Brown (knee) Charlie Spargo (Achilles), Jake Melksham (knee), Shane McAdam (calf), Lachie Hunter (calf), Daniel Turner (leg), Joel Smith (suspended)

NOTES: The million-dollar question on everyone's lips was whether Oliver would finally finally return to senior action, but coach Simon Goodwin announced on Monday that the gun midfielder would be recalled after two standout practice match performances at the lower level. Draftee Windsor also got the nod for his debut game after two scintillating practice match outings, while recruit Billings has also impressed in his first summer at the club and has earned a spot. The Demons haven't ruled out Petty (toe) and Spargo (Achilles), but the premiership duo might be up against it after sitting out both pre-season games. If Petty doesn't get up, expect Schache to take that key forward spot. Recruit McAdam (calf) and winger Hunter (calf) also seem more unlikely than likely to recover from their respective injuries in time for the season-opener. – Alison O'Connor

Editors note: Updated on March 4 after Simon Goodwin's presser.


First game: Round 1 v Greater Western Sydney at Giants Stadium, March 16, 4.35pm AEDT

B: Harry Sheezel, Toby Pink, Aidan Corr
HB: Colby McKercher, Kallan Dawson, Zac Fisher
C: Bailey Scott, George Wardlaw, Dylan Stephens
HF: Zane Duursma, Callum Coleman-Jones, Tom Powell
F: Paul Curtis, Nick Larkey, Cam Zurhaar
Tristan Xerri, Luke Davies-Uniacke, Jy Simpkin
Jaidyn Stephenson, Luke McDonald, Will Phillips, Charlie Lazzaro, Eddie Ford
EMERG: Hugh Greenwood, Curtis Taylor, Darcy Tucker

NEW: Zane Duursma, Colby McKercher, Dylan Stephens, Zac Fisher, Toby Pink

UNAVAILABLE: Griffin Logue (knee), Jackson Archer (groin)

NOTES: It's a new-look North Melbourne side in 2024, featuring up to five fresh faces. McKercher is a lock across half-back, where he will partner fellow recruit Fisher in a defence led by delisted free agent Pink. Expect a spot for Dawson as well, given he has impressed across the summer. The Kangaroos are hopeful that Corr (ankle) and McDonald (hamstring) both play, though Comben and Goater will be on standby if either don't get up. Duursma should also make his AFL debut, provided he gets through a practice match this weekend following a minor knee injury. Stephens will secure himself a spot on the wing, while Wardlaw will provide plenty of grunt in the midfield. Lazzaro looks to have worked himself into the side after a promising pre-season campaign, with Phillips also sneaking into the team. - Riley Beveridge

Colby McKercher in action during match simulation between Collingwood and North Melbourne at AIA Centre on February 21, 2024. Picture: Getty Images/AFL Photos

First game: Round 1 v West Coast at Adelaide Oval, March 17, 3.30pm ACDT

B: Brandon Zerk-Thatcher, Esava Ratugolea, Ryan Burton
HB: Kane Farrell, Aliir Aliir, Dan Houston
C: Travis Boak, Ollie Wines, Miles Bergman
HF: Jason Horne-Francis, Todd Marshall, Willie Rioli 
F: Jed McEntee, Charlie Dixon, Jeremy Finlayson
Foll: Ivan Soldo, Zak Butters, Connor Rozee
I/C: Lachie Jones, Jackson Mead, Willem Drew, Darcy Byrne-Jones, Mitch Georgiades
EMERG: Trent McKenzie, Jase Burgoyne, Jordon Sweet

NEW: Esava Ratugolea, Ivan Soldo, Brandon Zerk-Thatcher

UNAVAILABLE: Sam Powell-Pepper (suspended)

NOTES: A new-look defensive unit for Port in 2024 with Ratugolea and Zerk-Thatcher instant inclusions after being traded in from Geelong and Essendon respectively. Veteran Boak looks set for a role on one wing, with Bergman on the other, rather than at half-back. The tough decision for coach Ken Hinkley is how he replaces suspended Powell-Pepper. McEntee fits the bill as a small, pressure forward, while Byrne-Jones has also showed he can contribute in that role, pushing Rioli a little higher up the ground. Mead and Burgoyne have both been terrific but there may only be one spot available for the pair. - Michael Whiting

Willie Rioli kicks the ball during the AAMI Community Series match between Port Adelaide and Fremantle at Alberton Oval on March 1, 2024. Picture: Getty Images/AFL Photos

First game: Opening Round v Gold Coast at Heritage Bank Stadium, March 9, 3.20pm AEST

B: Dylan Grimes, Josh Gibcus, Nathan Broad
HB: Jayden Short, Nick Vlastuin, Daniel Rioli
C: Kamdyn McIntosh, Dion Prestia, Marlion Pickett
HF: Shai Bolton, Noah Balta, Liam Baker
F: Dustin Martin, Jacob Koschitzke, Seth Campbell
Foll: Toby Nankervis, Tim Taranto, Jacob Hopper
I/C: Thomson Dow, Tylar Young, Jack Ross, Sam Naismith, Steely Green
EMERG: Samson Ryan, Tom Brown, Ben Miller

NEW: Jacob Koschitzke, Sam Naismith, Seth Campbell, Steely Green

UNAVAILABLE: Tom Lynch (foot), Jack Graham (quad), Rhyan Mansell (syndesmosis)

NOTES: A lot hinges on the fitness of Nankervis (foot) – if he's cleared, he'll play, if not, Ryan comes into the 23. Vlastuin sat out the practice match and if still not right, Brown comes into the picture after a strong pre-season. When it comes to cover for Mansell's small forward role, Campbell started in the practice match, while Green came on for the last one-and-a-half quarters, indicating the former is just ahead in the pecking order. Graham's final-minute injury against Collingwood brings Ross back into the mix, after entering that same game late in the piece. – Sarah Black

Seth Campbell in action during the match simulation between Richmond and Melbourne at Casey Fields on February 18, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

First game: Round 1 v Geelong at GMHBA Stadium, March 16, 7.30pm AEDT

B: Callum Wilkie, Josh Battle, Zaine Cordy
HB: Nasiah Wanganeen-Milera, Liam Stocker, Brad Hill
C: Liam Henry, Seb Ross, Mason Wood
HF: Mitchito Owens, Tim Membrey, Cooper Sharman
F: Jack Higgins, Max King, Mattaes Phillipou
Foll: Rowan Marshall, Jack Steele, Brad Crouch
I/C: Darcy Wilson, Riley Bonner, Ryan Byrnes, Hugo Garcia, Arie Schoenmaker
EMERG: Tom Campbell, Zak Jones, Anthony Caminiti

NEW: Liam Henry, Darcy Wilson, Riley Bonner, Hugo Garcia, Arie Schoenmaker

UNAVAILABLE: Jimmy Webster, Dougal Howard (hamstring), Marcus Windhager (hand), Jack Sinclair (calf), Hunter Clark (calf), Paddy Dow (knee), Dan Butler (ankle), Ben Paton (pectoral), Jack Hayes (knee), James Van Es (ankle)

NOTES: A hamstring injury for Howard in Sunday's practice match could pave the way for a surprise round one debut for draftee Schoenmaker, although Cordy is the man most likely to take the key defensive spot. Webster is likely facing a lengthy suspension, with Stocker the logical backline replacement for him. Garcia is also in the frame for a round one debut after impressing during the pre-season matches and could play forward in the absence of Butler. With dual All-Australian Sinclair no guarantee for round one, the Saints look likely turn to impressive draftee Wilson to inject some line-breaking speed, while Windhager's broken hand could pave the way for Bonner to debut for the club. With the Saints recruiting for speed during the off-season, it will be interesting to see which of Wilson, Hill, Henry and Wood end up playing on the wing or across half-back. - Sophie Welsh

Liam Henry during St Kilda's official team photo day at RSEA Park on February 6, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

First game: Opening Round v Melbourne at the SCG, March 7, 7.30pm AEDT

B: Dane Rampe, Tom McCartin, Jake Lloyd
HB: Oliver Florent, Nick Blakey, James Jordon
C: Errol Gulden, Isaac Heeney, Braeden Campbell
HF: Hayden McLean, Logan McDonald, Will Hayward
F: Tom Papley, Joel Amartey, Sam Wicks
Foll: Brodie Grundy, Chad Warner, James Rowbottom
I/C: Matt Roberts, Angus Sheldrick, Justin McInerney, Harry Cunningham, Robbie Fox
EMERG: Joel Hamling, Peter Ladhams, Lewis Melican

NEW: Brodie Grundy, James Jordon

UNAVAILABLE: Callum Mills (shoulder), Luke Parker (arm), Taylor Adams (knee)

NOTES: The Swans begin their 2024 campaign without an abundance of experience in the middle, with skipper Mills, Parker and Adams all unavailable. Heeney featured in the middle throughout the practice matches and may be relied upon at centre bounces, particularly against the might of the Melbourne midfield. Former Dee Jordon hasn’t put a foot wrong this pre-season and could line up at half-back, on the wing or at half-forward. Meantime, Grundy will assume the number one ruck mantle, with his first big test against the six-time All-Australian in Max Gawn. Hamling and Melican will both feature in the Sydney backline throughout the season, but it's horses for courses here. They may not be required for Opening Round given many of Melbourne's key forwards are under injury clouds. Good players will be squeezed out of the side throughout the year. Players who can play multiple positions will be rewarded. Expect that forward line mix to change, too, as McDonald, Amartey and McLean jostle to fill the hole vacated by Lance Franklin. - Sarah Olle

Brodie Grundy in action during Sydney's match simulation against Greater Western Sydney on February 22, 2024. Picture: Getty Images

First game: Round 1 v Port Adelaide at Adelaide Oval, March 17, 3.30pm ACDT

B: Tom Cole, Tom Barrass, Brady Hough 
HB: Jayden Hunt, Jeremy McGovern, Liam Duggan 
C: Andrew Gaff, Harley Reid, Campbell Chesser
HF: Jack Petruccelle, Jack Darling, Jamie Cripps
F: Noah Long, Oscar Allen, Ryan Maric
Foll: Bailey Williams, Elliot Yeo, Tim Kelly  
I/C: Reuben Ginbey, Alex Witherden, Jake Waterman, Callum Jamieson, Tyler Brockman
EMERG: Luke Edwards, Harry Barnett, Clay Hall

NEW: Harley Reid, Tyler Brockman

UNAVAILABLE: Rhett Bazzo (groin), Jai Culley (knee), Harry Edwards (finger), Matt Flynn (hamstring), Elijah Hewett (foot), Archer Reid (knee), Josh Rotham (groin), Liam Ryan (hamstring)Dom Sheed (ankle)Zane Trew (back)

NOTES: The Eagles are expecting all of Allen (knee), Brockman (knee) and Ginbey (concussion) to be available for round one, giving them a significant boost. Chesser has done enough to lock down a wing role, while Reid played his best when unleashed onball. The ruck shapes as a tough position to fill in Flynn's absence and the Eagles might want the insurance of playing two, with Jamieson also able to play at either end of the ground and compete. Edwards is unlucky after a strong pre-season, but the Eagles can probably rotate Hunt as a third winger from half-back. – Nathan Schmook


First game: Round 1 v Melbourne at the MCG, March 17, 1pm AEDT

B: Alex Keath, Liam Jones, Nick Coffield
HB: Ed Richards, James O'Donnell, Bailey Dale
C: Bailey Williams, Marcus Bontempelli, Adam Treloar
HF: James Harmes, Aaron Naughton, Rhylee West
F: Rory Lobb, Jamarra Ugle-Hagan, Cody Weightman
Foll: Tim English, Tom Liberatore, Ryley Sanders
I/C: Jason Johannisen, Buku Khamis, Caleb Daniel, Taylor Duryea, Lachlan Bramble
EMERG: Sam Darcy, Jack Macrae, Harvey Gallagher

NEW: Ryley Sanders, Nick Coffield, James Harmes

UNAVAILABLE: Bailey Smith (ACL), Jordan Croft (shin), Aiden O'Driscoll (concussion)

NOTES: Sanders is set to slot straight into Luke Beveridge's midfield after a standout maiden pre-season that will see the pick No.6 start the season as one of the Rising Star favourites. Darcy has been locked in an intriguing battle with Lobb, but might start in the VFL, given how little football he has played at the Whitten Oval. Coffield has impressed and appears destined for a spot down back, while O'Donnell has made significant improvement over the summer. Gallagher is in the hunt for a debut, while Khamis has done well since being sent back into defence. Macrae missed almost all of February due to a hamstring and might miss out on selection in round one. – Josh Gabelich