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BULLDOGS rookie Lin Jong was best-afield in Footscray's 27-point win over Casey Scorpions at Craigieburn on Sunday.
In a low-scoring clash in which young Melbourne forward Jesse Hogan played his first game of the season
, Jong gathered 27 possessions, many of them around stoppages, and slotted two goals.
Also part of a winning midfield were Jason Tutt (21 disposals and a goal), whose speed through the middle was damaging, Christian Howard, whose left-foot kicking was a treat, and rookie Alex Greenwood (20).
The Dogs were also well served by their key forwards, with Jack Redpath overcoming an early knee problem to kick three goals and Liam Jones kicking one major and taking a few towering marks.
Tom Young had 25 touches off half-back for the winners.
Casey's best player by some distance was mobile big man Cameron Pedersen, who produced a superb all-round performance with 23 disposals, 11 marks (including several contested), 38 hit-outs and three goals.
James Strauss (27) and Jordie McKenzie (29) were also strong contributors in a losing side.
On Saturday, Carlton ruckman Matthew Kreuzer has made a successful return to football in the VFL on Saturday, after recovering from foot surgery.
Kreuzer played the first game of the season against Port Adelaide before having a procedure on his foot in April.
The 2007 No.1 draft pick played 50 per cent of game time in the Northern Blues' clash with Port Melbourne on Saturday, finishing with 10 disposals, three marks and 12 hit-outs.
The Blues were led superbly by young Blue Patrick Cripps who was clearly the club's best player with 25 disposals, five marks and five tackles.
Kane Lucas (31 touches) and Matthew Watson (three goals) were also strong contributors.
Hawthorn youngster Sam Grimley kicked six goals to power the Box Hill Hawks to a comfortable 63-point win over the Bendigo Gold
Mitch Hallahan's (two goals) influence also proved damaging.
Collingwood forward Jesse White has staked his claim for a timely return ahead of this year's finals series, with a dominant display in the VFL on Saturday.
White, who was dropped after last week's 10-goal belting at the hands of West Coast, bounced back in fine style against Geelong, grabbing four contested marks and booting four goals in a decisive last quarter.
The big Magpie helped erase a 16-point three-quarter time lead to Cats, as Collingwood snatched a 14-point win.
Tony Armstrong repelled strongly from the back half, while Corey Gault also earned plaudits from the Magpies' coaching staff.
With finals spots potentially on the line, a host of Geelong players were also influential during the game.
Brad Hartman provided a key spark to be named the Cats' best, although he also left Simonds Stadium in a precautionary neck brace after a heavy hit.
The club confirmed he had been cleared of any major damage after scans at hospital.
Darcy Lang and Lincoln McCarthy were also prominent for the Cats.
North Melbourne young defender Aaron Mullett has pushed his case for an immediate return to the senior side with 34 disposals and four tackles for VFL affiliate side North Ballarat.
Despite Mullett's best efforts, the Roosters came up short against Williamstown. Liam Anthony (31 touches and six clearances) also played a pivotal role.
However, the loss came at a cost with Joel Tippett irritating his right knee in the third quarter forcing him from the field for the rest of the game.
Port Adelaide midfielder Kane Mitchell has given himself every chance of a senior recall after a strong showing in a nine-point win over Norwood on Sunday.
Mitchell gathered 22 possessions and laid seven tackles, while Power rookie Sam Gray had 25 touches, four clearances, six tackles and kicked a goal, and Ben Newton has 23 touches and six clearances.
A host of Adelaide players have put their hand up for a return to the senior side with stellar displays in the SANFL on Saturday.
Rory Laird (42 touches and a goal) was the pick of the bunch, while Matt Crouch was outstanding with 35 disposals and 13 clearances.
The Brisbane Lions' tall forward stocks are continuing to show promise, with Jackson Paine nailing five goals in his side's 60-point win over Gold Coast.
Paine's strong form follows the talent Michael Close and Daniel McStay have shown at AFL level in recent weeks, a clear positive in the wake of Jonathan Brown's retirement.
Lion Zac O'Brien was named best on ground.
Veteran Sun Tom Murphy kicked three goals to be Gold Coast's most dangerous player.
Tom Mitchell and Ryan O'Keefe were both listed among the Sydney Swans' best in a one-point win over the UWS Giants.
The pair looms as the most likely replacements if Josh Kennedy's hamstring problem forces him to the sidelines for a significant period.
Tim Golds and Josh Hunt will be first in line or a senior call-up for the Giants next week after strong performances on Saturday.
Matthew Leuenberger also got through the game without a bother. Leuenberger is making a patient recovery following knee surgery after round four, while the club has been careful with his comeback from Achilles troubles in his return in early July.
Freo backman Garrick Ibbotson made a successful return from a back injury, one of the best afield in Peel Thunder's nine-point loss to West Perth on Saturday.
Key forward Michael Apeness was best on ground for the Thunder, kicking two goals, while Anthony Morabito starred in the midfield.
Eagle Blayne Wilson was reported in East Perth's 92-point demolition of cellar dwellers Perth on Saturday.
Brant Colledge, Fraser McIness and Will Maginess all kicked a goal apiece.