Main content

TEAMS: Dockers load up on talls, Garlett misses out again

Why the Pies lose again Wayne Carey and Campbell Brown preview round four
FREMANTLE, WESTERN AUSTRALIA - APRIL 05: Matt Taberner of the Dockers marks the ball during Fremantle Dockers AFL training session at Fremantle Oval on April 5, 2016 in Fremantle, Australia.  (Photo by Paul Kane/AFL Media/Getty Images)
Matt Taberner has been called up to boost Fremantle's talls

FREMANTLE has brought in extra ruck insurance to combat North Melbourne star Todd Goldstein, adding pinch-hitter Matt Taberner alongside Jonathon Griffin for Sunday's clash at Etihad Stadium.

The winless Dockers were caught short against West Coast when giant Aaron Sandilands (ribs/collapsed lung) went down in the second quarter, with Alex Pearce and Matt de Boer having to fill the breach.

Sandilands is out for an indefinite period, while de Boer and Tendai Mzungu have been chopped from the round three team, and Hayden Crozier comes in as Ross Lyon tries to keep Freo's season from slipping away.

No side has ever made finals after dropping to a 0-4 start to the season.

Click here for all the teams

There's no such worries for the undefeated Roos, who have made just one change, bringing in Mason Wood after his stellar three-goal and 36-disposal VFL performance to replace Taylor Garner (hamstring).

Meanwhile, Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley has turned to experience to arrest his side's alarming form slump ahead of a must-win clash with Melbourne at the MCG on Sunday.

The Magpies have brought back Travis Varcoe (hamstring) for his first game this year, Steele Sidebottom from suspension and rewarded Alan Toovey for impressive form in the VFL.

American native Mason Cox misses out on a fairytale debut for the Pies, while Marley Williams (foot), Brayden Maynard (hamstring) and Matthew Goodyear (omitted) are out.

The Demons have lost Bernie Vince (suspended), Aaron vandenBerg (ankle) and omitted Billy Stretch, while small forward Jeff Garlett (ankle) is still unavailable.

Competitive beast Angus Brayshaw and Cam Pedersen have been called up, while Jayden Hunt – the 57th pick in last year's draft – will make his debut.

In Sunday's early game, Port Adelaide welcomes back big guns Chad Wingard and Hamish Hartlett from hamstring injuries ahead of an important showdown at Greater Western Sydney's in Canberra.

Out of the side goes Paul Stewart and Jarman Impey, both dropped.

The Power (2-1) have looked anything but convincing so far this season, while GWS (1-2) risks falling two games off the pace in the top eight race with another defeat.

The Giants have made three enforced changes for the injured Aidan Corr (ankle), Will Hoskin-Elliott (quad) and Devon Smith (knee), recalling Jack Steele, Matt Buntine and Adam Tomlinson.

On Thursday, Hawthorn named skipper Luke Hodge to make an earlier than expected comeback against St Kilda on Saturday, less than three weeks after he suffered a fractured arm in the Easter Monday loss to Geelong.

The tough veteran has been given the all-clear from medicos, however gun defender Josh Gibson (hamstring tightness) is out of the Launceston clash.

St Kilda captain Nick Riewoldt and former No.1 draft pick Paddy McCartin have both passed concussion screening and been named for the tough assignment in Tasmania.

The Sydney Swans welcome back a leader for their blockbuster against Adelaide, with co-captain Jarrad McVeigh finally ready to kick-start his 2016 campaign following knee surgery at the end of last year.

Injury list for round four

Essendon's crafty Irishman Conor McKenna is in to face Geelong on Saturday in the inaugural 'Country Game' at the MCG after also being upgraded from the rookie list.

Former Brisbane Lions skipper Jed Adcock has also been promoted from the rookie list and will answer the Western Bulldogs' call for more leadership in the wake of skipper Bob Murphy's shattering season-ending ACL injury.

Hodge, who was tipped to miss at least four weeks after fracturing his arm, joins young Hawks utility Daniel Howe and tall forward Tim O'Brien in the side for Saturday's game at the club's Aurora Stadium fortress.

O'Brien will play his first match since round 21, 2014, replacing Ryan Schoenmakers (groin) while Jono O'Rourke has been dropped.

The Saints have included Tom Lee, Eli Templeton and Blake Acres after injury sidelined Dylan Roberton (knee), Jimmy Webster (quad) and Luke Dunstan (hamstring).

After missing the Crows' win over Richmond due to the birth of his second child, Showdown medallist Tom Lynch is back to take on the Swans at Adelaide Oval, replacing omitted youngster Riley Knight.

Jarrad McVeigh and Dean Towers come into the undefeated Swans' line-up in place of Zak Jones and George Hewett.

Important West Coast trio Jeremy McGovern (shoulder), Eric Mackenzie (toe) and Jamie Cripps (thigh) have all passed fitness tests following a bruising Western Derby.

The Eagles will go in unchanged at home on Friday night against an under-fire Richmond, which has won its past three matches at Domain Stadium.

The Tigers have cut underperforming midfielder Anthony Miles and Jayden Short, with ex-Port tough nut Andrew Moore to make his club debut and Taylor Hunt coming into the 22.

After a nailbiting loss to Hawthorn, the Dogs have made the solitary enforced change with Adcock replacing Murphy for Saturday night's meeting with Carlton at Etihad Stadium.

The Blues have brought in ex-Giants Lachie Plowman, Lachie Sumner and Jed Lamb, while veteran backman Michael Jamison and Mark Whiley have been dropped and Blaine Boekhorst (hamstring) is injured.

Geelong has left out veteran Corey Enright (managed) for the Country Game against Essendon, with defender Tom Lonergan coming back from a calf issue as a replacement.

Jordan Murdoch and Cory Gregson are also into the team, with Lincoln McCarthy and Jake Kolodjashnij making way.

Ex-Swan Craig Bird is back for the Bombers, alongside Jayden Laverde and McKenna, while Ryan Crowley is among those making way.

Unbeaten Gold Coast will be aiming to keep its perfect record intact against the winless Brisbane Lions at the Gabba and have brought back young gun Touk Miller for the Saturday twilight clash.

Miller (ankle), first-round draft pick Callum Ah Chee (illness) and Keegan Brooksby come into the side, replacing Trent McKenzie (nose), Rory Thompson (ankle), Brandon Matera (omitted).

Experienced onballer Daniel Rich (hamstring) returns for the Lions, with youngster Billy Evans making way.

Star midfielder Daniel Rich is back for the Lions ahead of the QClash. Picture: AFL Media

Friday, April 15

West Coast v Richmond at Domain Stadium, 6.10pm AWST

No change

In: A.Moore, T.Hunt
Out: A.Miles, J.Short
NEW: Andrew Moore (Port Adelaide)

Saturday, April 16

Essendon v Geelong at the MCG, 1.45pm AEST

In: C.Bird, J.Laverde, C.McKenna
Out: R.Crowley, N.Kommer, J.Merrett

In: T.Lonergan, J.Murdoch, C.Gregson
Out: C.Enright (managed), L.McCarthy, J.Kolodjashnij

Hawthorn v St Kilda at Aurora Stadium (Launceston), 2.10pm AEST

In: L.Hodge, T.O'Brien, D.Howe
Out: J.Gibson (hamstring tightness) , R.Schoenmakers (groin soreness), J.O'Rourke

In: T.Lee, E.Templeton, B.Acres
Out: D.Roberton (knee), J.Webster (quad), L.Dunstan (hamstring)

Brisbane Lions v Gold Coast at the Gabba, 4.35pm AEST

In: D.Rich
Out: B.Evans

In: C.Ah Chee, T.Miller, K.Brooskby
Out: T.McKenzie (nose), R.Thompson (ankle), B.Matera 

Carlton v Western Bulldogs at Etihad Stadium, 7.25pm AEST

In: L.Plowman, L.Sumner, J.Lamb 
Out: M.Jamison, M.Whiley, B.Boekhorst (hamstring)
New: Lachie Plowman (GWS), Liam Sumner (GWS)

In: J.Adcock
Out: R.Murphy (knee)
New: Jed Adcock (Brisbane Lions)

Adelaide v Sydney Swans at Adelaide Oval, 7.10pm ACST

In: T.Lynch
Out: R.Knight

In: J.McVeigh, D.Towers
Out: Z.Jones, G.Hewett

Sunday, April 17

Greater Western Sydney v Port Adelaide at Manuka Oval (Canberra), 1.10pm AEST

In: M.Buntine, A.Tomlinson, J.Steele
Out: W.Hoskin-Elliott (quad), D.Smith (knee), A.Corr (ankle)

In: H.Hartlett, J.Wingard
Out: J.Impey, P.Stewart

Collingwood v Melbourne at the MCG, 3.20pm AEST

In: A.Toovey, T.Varcoe, S.Sidebottom
Out: M.Williams (foot), B.Maynard (hamstring), M.Goodyear

In: C.Pedersen, A.Brayshaw, J.Hunt
Out: B.Vince (suspension), A.Vandenberg (ankle), B.Stretch 
New: Jayden Hunt (Sandringham U18)

North Melbourne v Fremantle at Etihad Stadium, 4.40pm AEST

In: M.Wood
Out: T.Garner (hamstring)

In: H.Crozier, J.Griffin, M.Taberner
Out: A.Sandilands (ribs/lung), T.Mzungu, M.De Boer