Adelaide Crows

State league affiliate: Adelaide (SANFL)
This weekend: Sturt v Adelaide - Saturday, March 30, 2.40pm, Peter Motley Oval

Ex-Tiger Tyson Stengle bagged four goals in Adelaide's 32-point win over Sturt in their SANFL season-opener at Peter Motley Oval on Saturday.

The diminutive Stengle, who was last year traded back to his native South Australia, produced an eye-catching performance that also included 18 possessions, three clearances and four inside 50s.

Fellow 20-year-old Myles Poholke chimed in with three goals and also had 25 touches, five clearances and five inside 50s.

The other major ball winners were rookie Patrick Wilson (28 touches and four clearances), teenager Andrew McPherson (22) and Cameron Ellis-Yolmen (22 touches, six clearances and seven inside 50s).

Brisbane Lions

State league affiliate: Brisbane (NEAFL)
This weekend: Gold Coast v Brisbane - Sunday, March 31, 10am, Metricon Stadium

Cedric Cox bagged three goals for Brisbane in its 50-point practice match victory over Gold Coast at Metricon Stadium.

First-round draftee Ely Smith won plenty of the footy and tackled well.

Allen Christensen and Lewis Taylor worked hard through the midfield, with the former also adding a couple of goals.

The Lions booted just two goals in the opening half but came home hard to win comfortably, 14.13 (97) to 7.5 (47).


State league affiliate: Northern Blues (VFL)
This weekend: North Melbourne v Northern Blues - Saturday, March 30, 10am, Ikon Park

Blues midfielder Matt Kennedy pressed his claims for promotion in the Northern Blues' 34-point win over North Melbourne in their VFL practice match at Craigieburn on Saturday.

Kennedy, who has recently overcome a shoulder issue, accumulated 30 possessions and finished strongly with 10 touches and a lovely long goal in the final term. 

Jack Silvagni, playing alongside his brother, first-year draftee Ben, was a handy performer with 19 disposals and an equal team-high two goals. 

Teenage midfielder Lochie O'Brien was solid with 20 touches while ruckman Matthew Lobbe (19) was also in the thick of the action.

Prized draftee Liam Stocker wasn't prolific but used the ball well across half-back.


State league affiliate: Collingwood (VFL)
This weekend: Richmond v Collingwood - Thursday, March 28, 4pm, Swinburne Centre

Veteran defender Lynden Dunn endured a horror return to the field in the VFL, suffering his second season-ending knee injury in the space of just nine months.

Dunn's third-quarter mishap capped a poor night for the Magpies in a 54-point loss to Richmond in a twilight practice match at Punt Road on Thursday. 

Pies VFL coach Jared Rivers said the only player in his badly beaten team who could hold his head high was medium-sized backman Flynn Appleby, who continues to keep himself in the frame for an AFL recall.


State league affiliate: Essendon (VFL)
This weekend: Sandringham v Essendon - Saturday, March 30, 12.30pm, Wilson Storage Trevor Barker Oval

Wintry conditions often aren't conducive to great acts of skills but the Bombers' VFL team managed to produce plenty of material for the highlights reel in their 36-point win over Sandringham in a practice match at Trevor Barker Oval on Saturday. 

Highly skilled draftee Irving Mosquito snagged two goals, his first coming after eluding several opponents. 

Fellow teenagers Brayden Ham and Noah Gown also hit the scoreboard, Ham goaling with a long bomb. 

Jordan Houlahan soared to take a spectacular high mark before converting, while ruckman Zac Clarke also goaled.

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State league affiliate: Peel Thunder (WAFL)
This weekend: Peel Thunder v Perth Demons - Saturday, March 30, 4.30pm, David Grays Arena

After being overlooked to replace Hayden Ballantyne (hamstring) against Gold Coast, small forward Brandon Matera pushed his case with 2.1 from 17 touches in a one-point win over Perth.

Returning from a hamstring, fellow goalsneak Sam Switkowski was on limited minutes and had 12 touches and five tackles.

Lanky defender Taylin Duman hit the scoreboard with two majors from 24 disposals and nine marks, while ball-magnet Tom North picked up 22 touches, laid nine tackles and won six clearances in the 13.11 (89( to 13.10 (88) triumph.

Geelong Cats

State league affiliate: Geelong (VFL)
This weekend: Geelong v Casey Demons - Saturday, March 30, 11am, Avalon Airport Oval

Cats swingman Lachie Henderson again pressed his claims for a return to AFL level in a 28-point loss to Casey Demons in a VFL practice match at Werribee on Saturday.

Henderson, who has been left out of Geelong's AFL team for team balance, was influential in defence. 

The Cats' big-men stocks also continue to provide selection options after some encouraging signs.

In conditions generally not suited to tall players, 205cm Darcy Fort and 200cm Ryan Abbott were among Geelong's best performers and capped their work by contributing a goal each. 

The Cats' chief scorer was 199cm Wylie Buzza, who kicked two majors, while 206cm Zac Smith also got involved in the flow of play.

Youngsters Sam Simpson and James Parsons were also workmanlike.

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Gold Coast Suns

State league affiliate: Gold Coast (NEAFL)
This weekend: Gold Coast v Brisbane - Sunday, March 31, 10am, Metricon Stadium

Injuries to former Richmond half-back Corey Ellis (ankle) and draftee Jez McLennan (knee) in the opening term against Brisbane will have Gold Coast sweating.

There was positive news for last year's No.6 pick Ben King, booting two goals up forward in the opening half.

Will Brodie, Aaron Young, Brayden Crossley and Connor Nutting slotted a goal apiece as the Lions won, 14.13 (97) to 7.5 (47).

GWS Giants

State league affiliate: GWS Giants (NEAFL)
This weekend: GWS Giants v Sydney - Saturday, March 30, 11am, Tom Wills Oval

Returning ruck Shane Mumford engaged in a gruelling battle with Sydney big man Darcy Cameron all day and ran out the game well in the Giants' 43-point practice match loss.

The 32-year-old is eligible to play in the senior side next week after serving his club-imposed suspension for a video that emerged of him snorting a white powder in 2015. 

Category B rookie Jake Stein was superb and rarely beaten in defence, while Isaac Cumming offered plenty of drive.

Through the midfield, Aiden Bonar and Nick Shipley were tireless as Sydney finished victorious, 11.13 (79) to 5.6 (36).


State league affiliate: Box Hill Hawks (VFL)
This weekend: Werribee v Box Hill Hawks - Saturday, March 30, 2pm, Avalon Airport Oval

Backman David Mirra responded to his omission from the senior side with an excellent performance for Box Hill in its practice match victory over Werribee on Saturday afternoon at Avalon Airport Oval.

Mirra was back in the VFL after Tom Scully was brought into the Hawthorn team that faced the Western Bulldogs on Sunday.

A couple of talls also impressed. Mitch Lewis looked good, as did Marc Pittonet.

Lewis is a promising forward, having slotted 38 goals from 19 games for Box Hill last year.


State league affiliate: Casey Demons (VFL)
This weekend: Geelong v Casey Demons - Saturday, March 30, 11am, Avalon Airport Oval

Ruckman Braydon Preuss impressed in the Casey Demons' 28-point VFL practice match victory over Geelong in a wind-affected contest at Avalon Airport Oval.

The Wagner brothers both performed well, Corey racking up plenty of the football as an onballer, with Josh playing as a tall down back and offering plenty of run.

Up forward, Declan Keilty's marking impressed and Billy Stretch did plenty through the middle.

North Melbourne

State league affiliate: North Melbourne (VFL)
This weekend: North Melbourne v Northern Blues - Saturday, March 30, 10am, Ikon Park

Out-of-favour midfielder Paul Ahern – a mystery omission from the Kangaroos' round one team – was among North's best players in a 34-point loss to the Northern Blues in a VFL practice match at Ikon Park on Saturday.

The former Giant, who was curiously overlooked after a strong JLT Community Series performance, was particularly prominent in the third term with his slick ball use. 

First-year player Curtis Taylor also showed great promise and was damaging at times in the midfield. 

Big man Nick Larkey, the reigning VFL leading goalkicker, kicked his solitary goal in the last quarter. 

Fellow forward Mason Wood also kicked one goal.

Port Adelaide

State league affiliate: Port Adelaide (SANFL)
This weekend: West Adelaide v Port Adelaide - Friday, March 29, 7.50pm, City Mazda Stadium

Midfielder Jack Trengove starred and Hamish Hartlett made another successful return from a knee injury in Port Adelaide's 31-point win over West Adelaide in their SANFL season-opener at City Mazda Stadium on Friday night. 

Ex-Demon Trengove, who last year played just three AFL games for Port in his first season with the club, was easily best-afield with 44 possessions, nine clearances, eight inside 50s, 11 tackles and a goal in windy conditions. 

Forward/midfielder Sam Gray also enjoyed a superb night, collecting 33 touches and scoring 4.1. 

Power vice-captain Hartlett, who underwent a knee reconstruction last April and was sidelined for the JLT Community Series with knee soreness, moved well and gathered 16 possessions. 

Among the other Port players to thrive were big-bodied midfielder Joe Atley (27 touches and 11 clearances), forward Aidyn Johnson (15 touches and 1.1), the experienced Matthew Broadbent (21) and teenage little man Boyd Woodcock (20 touches and 1.2).


State league affiliate: Richmond (VFL)
This weekend: Richmond v Collingwood - Thursday, March 28, 4pm, Swinburne Centre

With champion defender Alex Rance suffering a serious knee injury, young Tiger talls Noah Balta and Ryan Garthwaite produced strong auditions for a key defensive role.

The powerful pair were instrumental in keeping Collingwood goalless until midway through the second term, and to just six majors for the match, in a 54-point win in a VFL practice match at Punt Road on Thursday.

At the other end, key forward Callum Moore enjoyed a solid performance that could have him in the senior selection frame given the injury to Jack Riewoldt.

He received good support from rookie small forward Jake Aarts, who slotted a game-high four goals. 

The versatile Jacob Townsend could also come under consideration after setting the tone with a typically hard-edged effort, this time on the ball, an area in which Richmond's AFL team was soundly beaten.

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St Kilda

State league affiliate: Sandringham (VFL)
This weekend: Sandringham v Essendon - Saturday, March 30, 12.30pm, Wilson Storage Trevor Barker Oval

Talented Saints youngster Hunter Clark continued to present a strong case for elevation during Sandringham's 36-point loss to Essendon in a VFL practice match at Trevor Barker Oval on Saturday.

With little midfield support Clark collected 23 possessions, to go with a solid performance last week.

Rookie runner Doulton Langlands had 20 touches while key defender Logan Austin was busy with 19.

Mature-age draftee Robbie Young kicked two of Sandringham's five goals, while omitted pair in rookie ruckman Lewis Pierce and forward Ben Long scored a goal apiece.

Sydney Swans

State league affiliate: Sydney (NEAFL)
This weekend: GWS Giants v Sydney - Saturday, March 30, 11am, Tom Wills Oval

Veteran Kieren Jack continues to step up his workload in his comeback from a knee injury, registering 70 minutes in Sydney's 43-point practice match win over Greater Western Sydney on Saturday.

He played 60 minutes last week and was his typically solid self.

Young key forward Tom McCartin provided presence in attack and booted two goals, as did ruckman Darcy Cameron and Category B rookie Sam Wicks.

The Swans led at every change to record the 11.13 (79) to 5.6 (36) victory. 

West Coast Eagles

State league affiliate: West Coast (WAFL)
This weekend: West Coast v TBC - Saturday, May 19, 2.15pm, Leederville Oval

Eagles premiership pair Will Schofield and Jamie Cripps returned from injuries and got through unscathed in a 52-point win in a WAFL practice match at East Fremantle on Saturday.

Experienced backman Schofield showed no sign of a corked quad and could enter the selection frame for the grand final rematch against Collingwood at the MCG.

Cripps was less conspicuous in his return from a toe injury.

Mature-age rookie ruckman/forward Keegan Brooksby, the former Sun, bagged a game-high five goals in an accomplished showing.

Young runner Xavier O'Neill, the Eagles' top pick in last year's NAB AFL Draft, showed great promise in his first outing after overcoming a knee problem.

Second-year key-position prospect Jarrod Brander, dropped this week, performed strongly in the midfield.

Rookie Fraser McInnes slotted two goals, including one from the boundary.

Western Bulldogs

State league affiliate: Footscray (VFL)
This weekend: Footscray v Williamstown - Saturday, March 30, 1pm, VU Whitten Oval 

Young runner Patrick Lipinski is closing in on an AFL recall after a best-on-ground display in Footscray's seven-point win over Williamstown in a VFL practice match at Whitten Oval on Saturday.

The 20-year-old had 32 possessions and kicked a goal in a superb effort that dragged the Dogs over the line.

Father-son draftee Rhylee West (19 touches and a goal) took another step in his development.

Mature-age draftee Will Hayes (22 and a goal) and rookie Roarke Smith (18) also provided run while Fletcher Roberts (18) was solid in defence.

Bailey Dale and Fergus Greene were the chief goalkickers with two apiece.