WHO IS a chance to play in round 10?
In this week's In the Mix we find the players who are giving their selectors plenty of food for thought.
Who's going out, who's sore, who is under the pump? Our reporters attempt to pick all the R10 ins and outs. Check it out.
With no new injury concerns and a competitive loss to West Coast at the weekend, there's unlikely to be many changes for Saturday's match against competition pacesetters Melbourne at Adelaide Oval. Captain Taylor Walker is an automatic return after being rested for the trip west, while Ned McHenry is also available after missing a week with concussion. The Crows could look at bringing in Fisher McAsey if they decide another tall defender is required to tackle the Demons' three-pronged attack.
R9 medical sub: Andrew McPherson (unused)
Verdict: Walker and McHenry for Frampton and O'Connor – Michael Whiting
Some big decision to make for the Lions ahead of Friday night's blockbuster with Richmond at the Gabba. Injuries to defenders Darcy Gardiner and Ryan Lester will force a reshuffle in the backline. James Madden showed in his recent debut he was capable of defending speedy small forwards – ideal against the Tigers. Callum Ah Chee could be moved to defence, allowing either Keidean Coleman or Tom Berry to come in as a pressure small forward. Connor Ballenden would also be an option if the Lions want another tall defender.
R9 medical sub: Keidean Coleman (replaced Lester)
Verdict: Coleman and Madden for Gardiner and Lester – Michael Whiting
The Blues should regain Jack Silvagni, who is set to pass the AFL's concussion protocols on Friday. Jack Martin is also an outside chance to return from a knee injury, but expect him to miss another week. Silvagni should be an automatic inclusion for David Cuningham, who will unfortunately be sidelined for the remainder of the season due to a ruptured ACL. Tom De Koning was close last week, perhaps held back due to the stern task of facing Max Gawn on what could have been his return from lingering back issues, but should come into consideration for either Marc Pittonet or Levi Casboult this week. Pressure forward Josh Honey is also on the fringes of a recall, but wasn't able to impress last weekend due to the Blues having the VFL bye.
R9 medical sub: Michael Gibbons (replaced David Cuningham)
Verdict: Silvagni and De Koning to replace Cuningham and Pittonet. - Riley Beveridge
Jordan Roughead and Nathan Murphy are set to available after missing last week's loss to Sydney with concussion, leaving Nathan Buckley with plenty to ponder. Their replacements, Tom Wilson and Callum Brown, will be looked at, as will Ollie Henry, who was quiet against the Swans, and young defender Mark Keane. Josh Thomas lacked impact, but the Pies have been loyal to him this season, while Caleb Poulter has looked up to the level. Unused medical sub Jack Madgen will also be in their thoughts along with Finlay Macrae, Trent Bianco, Jay Rantall and Mason Cox, however Buckley has indicated Will Kelly needs more form at VFL level.
R9 medical sub: Jack Madgen (unused)
Verdict: Roughead and Murphy for Wilson and Henry. - Mitch Cleary
The Bombers will need to replace Devon Smith, who they will lose with a hamstring injury. Nik Cox was last week's substitute as his game time was managed, and having only played in the second half in the win over Fremantle it could be enough of a freshen up for the first-year Bomber to remain in the 22. Patrick Ambrose is pushing his claims after six goals in the VFL, while Alec Waterman and Ned Cahill are options for the Bombers senior side this week against North Melbourne.
R9 medical sub: Nik Cox (used)
Verdict: Cox, Waterman in for Smith, David Zaharakis - Callum Twomey
The Dockers need to change their forward mix after another wayward performance, bringing key target Josh Treacy into calculations. The team looked dangerous with a taller forward line early in the season but now ranks No.18 for goalkicking accuracy. Speedster Joel Western could also be considered to make his debut, with several small forwards out of form. Club champion Luke Ryan is expected to return from a calf injury, while defender Reece Conca is available after being used as the medical substitute for the Essendon loss. There were no WAFL games for players outside the 23 to push their case this week, with defender Alex Pearce’s likely return from a long injury layoff through the State league.
R9 medical substitute: Reece Conca (unused)
Verdict: Ryan and Treacy for Duman and Crowden. Western as medical substitute. – Nathan Schmook
Luke Dahlhaus will be a watch after he was a late withdrawal against St Kilda with a mystery injury stemming from his big hit against Richmond in round eight. Last-minute inclusion Jordan Clark will be looked at after a quiet showing, while Zach Guthrie, Quinton Narkle and Esava Ratugolea remain on the fringe. Brandan Parfitt has been cleared of major damage to his hand but will still need to be assessed. The ruck situation, with the potential of a recall for Darcy Fort or Rhys Stanley, is another to ponder after a defence lacking ruckman Mark Blicavs was exposed by the Saints' height. However, there may be less to worry about against Gold Coast. Jake Kolodjashnij is pushing to play, medical sub Max Holmes and emergency Charlie Constable are in the frame, but Mark O'Connor might need another week.
R9 medical sub: Max Holmes (unused)
Verdict: If both are passed fit, Kolodjashnij and Dahlhaus in for Zach Guthrie and Clark. - Mitch Cleary
Fresh off a hammering from Brisbane and about to face Geelong at GMHBA Stadium, the Suns have some headaches. Touk Miller will return to the midfield following suspension, while pressure forward Nick Holman is also back after missing a week with concussion. With Jack Bowes out injured, Rory Atkins could move to half-back to enable Miller's return. Ruckman Zac Smith has now played three VFL matches and could put his name up for a return.
R9 medical sub: Darcy Macpherson (replaced Bowes)
Verdict: Miller, Holman and Smith for Bowes, Ainsworth and Burgess – Michael Whiting
The Giants will have to do without Toby Greene for the next month after the star forward fractured a shoulder against Richmond. Jeremy Finlayson should return to the forward line after a one-week suspension, while Tanner Bruhn and his ability to play forward or in the midfield could also be used to help cover Greene’s absence. Harry Perryman strained a hamstring and was subbed out of the clash with the Tigers and will miss four weeks. Nick Haynes and Sam Reid both face a fitness test to return from hamstring injuries and bolster an inexperienced defence. The Giants again must consider whether to bring Shane Mumford back after a week of rest or stick with Matt Flynn and Kieren Briggs. It was a dark day for the Giants’ VFL team, only kicking three goals in a 97-point loss to Richmond. The consistent Nick Shipley (28 disposals, seven tackles) held his own in the midfield, and draftee Conor Stone (14 touches) showed further glimpses of his talent.
R9 medical sub: Tanner Bruhn (replaced Perryman)
Verdict: Haynes, Finlayson and Bruhn into the starting 22 for Greene and Perryman. Buntine drops to medical sub. - Martin Pegan
The Hawks are coming off another disappointing performance, becoming the first team to lose to North Melbourne this year. Ollie Hanrahan was quiet in attack and could be replaced by Josh Morris, who booted five in the VFL against a very young North side. Unused sub Daniel Howe also had a day out with 37 touches and two goals, while dropped key forward Emerson Jeka kicked 3.4 from 20 touches. Veteran Shaun Burgoyne has been a test for several weeks as he works to overcome an ankle injury.
R9 medical sub: Daniel Howe (unused)
Verdict: Morris in for Hanrahan. If Burgoyne is fit, Michael Hartley could be the one to make way, with a shuffle of magnets subsequently needed. – Sarah Black
The Demons could probably regain Luke Jackson from finger surgery and Nathan Jones from a slight hamstring issue, but might be ultra-cautious with their returns as a clash with the high-flying Bulldogs is on the horizon. The same goes with Jack Viney and his recovery from a toe injury, as well as Aaron vandenBerg as he rehabs a quad problem. Minimal change would also allow Sam Weideman and Ben Brown to get an extended run in the senior team together. Tom Sparrow is banging down the door for a senior recall, winning 30 disposals and six tackles in Casey's VFL win over Geelong last weekend. He could replace Kade Chandler, who was quiet in a victory against the Blues. Mitch Brown also kicked four goals in that reserves clash, but is in a long line of key forward options for Simon Goodwin's side.
R9 medical sub: Jake Melksham (unused)
Verdict: Sparrow to replace Chandler, with Jackson and Jones given another week. - Riley Beveridge
The Kangaroos will wait on a Tribunal hearing for Tarryn Thomas on Tuesday night, before getting to work on finalising plans for this weekend's clash with the Bombers. Kyron Hayden is an outside chance to return from a hamstring issue, but that appears unlikely. Bailey Scott could also be on the verge of a senior recall, having won 28 disposals and kicked a goal in another heavy VFL loss to Box Hill. David Noble won't want to make too many unforced changes to a winning formula, though.
R9 medical sub: Will Phillips (unused)
Verdict: Scott to replace Thomas, should his challenge at the Tribunal prove unsuccessful. - Riley Beveridge
The Power chose not to debut ruckman Sam Hayes against the Western Bulldogs, but he could be considered this week with Brodie Grundy looming, leading the ruck with support from Peter Ladhams. Port will need to replace defender Tom Clurey, who has a broken jaw, with Trent McKenzie shaping as a likely inclusion. Dan Houston is expected to be available after recovering from an AC joint injury, while first-year defender Lachie Jones could also be considered if he proves his fitness this week after an ankle injury. If Hayes is selected in the ruck, a tall will need to make way for balance. Todd Marshall has gone goalless in three of his past four games and would be the likely omission.
R9 medical substitute: Martin Frederick (replaced Clurey)
Verdict: Hayes, McKenzie and Houston for Clurey, Marshall and Kane Farrell. – Nathan Schmook
After a spate of injuries to top midfielders, Richmond got through the weekend unscathed. The VFL team had a whopping 97-point win over an undermanned GWS. Callum Coleman-Jones kicked five goals, but the Tigers seem keen to load up with runners, rather than big men. After a few weeks off (soreness and a bye) Josh Caddy had a big day out with 32 touches and two goals, while young inside mid Will Martyn also recorded 32. The only change may see Jack Ross play a full VFL game, rather than be used as the sub.
R9 medical sub: Jack Ross (unused)
Verdict: No change. – Sarah Black
Rowan Marshall's latest foot injury – one that will sideline him for at least a month – leaves a gaping hole in the ruck with Paddy Ryder to need assistance against the Western Bulldogs. Shaun McKernan kicked three goals in the VFL but didn't play in the ruck as Paul Hunter (31 hitouts, 16 disposals) took the bulk of the work, while Josh Battle is another who could be considered in a pinch-hit role. Jack Lonie, who was dropped after round seven, was quiet against Geelong, while Ryan Byrnes and Jack Bytel remain on the edge. Brad Crouch is expected to be passed fit after a procedure to repair a fractured cheekbone on the weekend. James Frawley and Tom Highmore also featured in a new-look backline against the Cats that may be reshuffled against the Dogs, with the dropped Nick Coffield and medical sub Ben Long eager to return, while Jarryn Geary is available after one game in the VFL. Luke Dunstan (36 disposals) and Mason Wood (29) also had big games to put their names up.
R9 medical sub: Ben Long (replaced Marshall)
Verdict: Geary and Wood for Highmore and Marshall. Battle to provide a pinch-hit over Hunter. - Mitch Cleary
The Swans have made at least three changes for each of the last five matches, so with no fresh injury concerns they may look to go into the clash against Fremantle with a settled line-up. Sam Reid and Lewis Melican are both at least a week away from returning. Young guns Errol Gulden and Braeden Campbell missed the win over Collingwood and will be out until at least the Swans’ bye in round 14. Ryan Clarke (41 disposals, three goals) and Dylan Stephens (37 disposals) continue to stand out in the VFL, but the Swans have a tough team to break into.
R9 medical sub: James Bell (unused)
Verdict: No change to starting 22. Clarke to replace Bell as medical sub. - Martin Pegan
The Eagles have tough decisions to make at both ends of the ground as Shannon Hurn and Liam Ryan prepare to return from injury. Both trained impressively on Tuesday and are ready to play. There is no obvious omission for Hurn in a strong backline, with Jackson Nelson, Tom Cole and Josh Rotham all at risk of making way. Alex Witherden has impressed and should hold his spot. In attack, ruck/forward Bailey Williams looks the most likely omission for Ryan if the Eagles are prepared to use Oscar Allen as a support ruckman. Allen had his right elbow in a large guard on Tuesday so could be protected if he plays on Saturday night. After juggling injuries all season, the Eagles finally have some selection headaches. Whoever makes way will be unlucky.
R9 medical substitute: Zac Langdon (unused)
Verdict: Hurn and Ryan for Williams and Nelson, who moves to medical substitute. – Nathan Schmook
Coach Luke Beveridge said on Tuesday that last week's substitute Hayden Crozier would likely come into the starting 22 to replace Easton Wood, who will miss up to six weeks with a hamstring injury. There remains a wait-and-see on Tim English (concussion) and Lachie Hunter (hand) but both will be in the selection frame for this week's clash with St Kilda if they can get through Thursday's training session. The Dogs have some players sore after their bruising win over the Power last week, so there could be some surprises on the selection side of things later in the week.
R9 medical sub: Hayden Crozier (used)
Verdict: Hunter, English and Crozier in for Wood, Roarke Smith, Jordon Sweet - Callum Twomey