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The best Fantasy free agents for round 23

Defender-turned-ruckman Mark Blicavs in action for the Cats against the Lions - AFL,Tag-Fantasy,Fantasy
Defender-turned-ruckman Mark Blicavs in action for the Cats against the Lions

ALL IS in readiness for the big dance this weekend. Round 23 is the Grand Final for Fantasy Draft leagues and coaches who have made it through to that one weekend in August will be looking to gain the edge over their opponent right up until lockout.

Free agents will play a part in the final round, whether they are in to cover an injury, suspension, or a 'late out' or if you're looking for a player to come on to your field with a friendly match-up.

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It is no secret that Gold Coast has been the easiest team to score on this year.

Teams average 1693 points against the Suns, with the Blues (1623), Tigers (1613), Crows (1612) and Demons (1611) in the next group.

The numbers suggest that players are dining out when their team plays Gold Coast. Picture: AFL Photos

At the other end of the scale, the Giants (1501), Lions (1501), Bulldogs (1505) and Cats (1506) are the most restrictive.

Targeting players with some Fantasy chops from teams with match-ups against the easier sides this weekend, such as Greater Western Sydney against Gold Coast, and Geelong against the Blues, could prove to be a masterstroke. 

Defenders

Nick Haynes, DEF, GWS Giants (ADP 249, 43 per cent)

With scores of 104, 92, 89 and 99 in his last four, let's not beat around the bush, just get him in.

Brayden Maynard, DEF, Collingwood (ADP 229, 36 per cent)

Second top scorer for the Pies on the weekend behind Scott Pendlebury, Maynard took 12 marks as he did what he liked for 130 points on the Crows. Not a bad option to bring in for a cheeky bench emergency loophole on Friday night.

Nathan Buckley congratulates Brayden Maynard on a strong showing against the Crows. Picture: AFL Photos

Mark Blicavs, DEF, Geelong (ADP Nil, 15 per cent)

The versatile Blicavs is currently the ruckman of choice for the Cats and is generally holding his own in the contests. 85 against Todd Goldstein and 82 against Stefan Martin were solid returns as he was able to get his hands on the ball as well as lay plenty of tackles in the role.

ALSO CONSIDER: Jeremy Howe (54 per cent), Dan Houston (49 per cent), Pearce Hanley (20 per cent), Taylor Duryea (20 per cent).

Midfielders

Hugh McCluggage, MID, Brisbane Lions (ADP 199, 61 per cent)

There have only been a couple of blips in McCluggage's season that has seen him average 91 points. These have come recently with a pair of 60s and a 70 in the last few weeks. The Lions take on the Tigers this Sunday at the MCG and, although they've started hitting some form, Richmond are giving up points to midfielders. After scoring 125 in their round 22 win, Hugh could help bag you a win this week.

Oliver Florent, MID, Sydney Swans (ADP Nil, 12 per cent)

If Florent isn't marked in your little black book for 2020, then get him on the list now. Heck, give him a trial this round as the Swans take on the Saints at the SCG. 28 disposals on Friday night helped him to 98 Fantasy points to back up from his 91 and 113 in the fortnight prior. Florent has pushed further up the ground of late and is playing a Fantasy friendly role.

Ollie Florent puts the jets on during Sydney's clash with Melbourne. Picture: AFL Photos

ALSO CONSIDER: Dan Hannebery (63 per cent), David Swallow (56 per cent), Jarrod Berry (38 per cent), Paul Seedsman (22 per cent).

Rucks

Jonathon Ceglar, RUC/FWD, Hawthorn (ADP Nil, 30 per cent)

It is hard recommending Ceglar when he plays alongside Ben McEvoy, but if 'Big Boy' plays a similar role as he did on Sunday, then his understudy could be a good option. McEvoy played in defence which allowed Ceglar to ruck the majority of the game and score his second ton of the year.

ALSO CONSIDER: Sam Jacobs (56 per cent), Paddy Ryder (47 per cent), Aaron Sandilands (36 per cent). 

Forwards

Patrick Lipinski, MID/FWD, Western Bulldogs (ADP Nil, 63 per cent)

Lipinski was snapped up in most Draft leagues when he broke into the side and racked up scores of 129, 100 and 88 following the Bulldogs' bye. A lull in his output is now behind him as he's produced scores of 83, 91 and 129 in the last three weeks. Look for another big performance against the Crows on Sunday.

Shane Edwards, MID/FWD, Richmond (ADP Nil, 34 per cent)

You can't deny the form of Edwards. He was averaging sub-70 prior to his last three games where he's pumped out 90, 127 and 90. Although he has the ability to drop a score under 50, like he has done on four occasions this year, recent form would suggest that the risk of one of these scores is unlikely.

Ben Brown, FWD, North Melbourne (ADP 263, 17 per cent)

It's unlikely that Brown will bag another 10 goals this week and post 125, however, Melbourne have allowed some 'lesser' key forwards score higher than their average. Sam Reid booted three goals for 97 points on the weekend, and the week before Brody Mihocek scored 100 for his four-goal performance.

ALSO CONSIDER: Chad Wingard (59 per cent), Will Hoskin-Elliott (31 per cent), Bailey Smith (13 per cent), Tim Membrey (11 per cent). 

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