ONE PLAYER missing from Brisbane's finals exit last year that will play against Richmond on Friday night is hard-nut Mitch Robinson.
The veteran wingman strained his hamstring in the corresponding match against the Tigers last year and missed the following week's loss to Greater Western Sydney that ended the Lions' fairytale run.
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But after a slow middle part of his season, Robinson is back to his best just in time for October and eager to make amends.
The 31-year-old is a player his teammates love to play with – hard at the contest and a tireless runner that gets back to help the defence and forward to provide an option in attack.
Speaking to AFL.com.au, Robinson said he loved this time of the season.
"I find I play my best footy in the finals," he said.
"I thought I could have helped the boys against GWS, but I didn't dwell on it too much, you can't change too much with a hammy.
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"I wasn't too upset I couldn't play, it was more the fact the boys got so close and lost in the last 20 seconds. I felt sorry for them.
"We get another opportunity this year, which is great, another two home finals, so we're looking to redeem ourselves for that."
And Brisbane faces its bogey team, Richmond, the one dragon left to slay in the Chris Fagan era of breaking hoodoos.
Although not everything Robinson does can be measured by stats, he put a quiet month behind him with three excellent outings to finish the year, averaging 15 disposals and a goal a game.
He says the wing is an "unrewarded role" but one he loves, particularly if the Lions can upset the Tigers.
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"We've been pretty close the last couple of years," he said.
"We believe being cleaner with the ball, back to our fundamentals, would hold us in good stead.
"If we do the little things right - they're so clean, so efficient, so many forward handballs and surging the ball, they know each other really well.
"We've got to win the ball at the source and get it going forward. It's pretty simple."