Taylor Walker say out the second half after injuring his hamstring. Picture: AAP
Taylor Walker say out the second half after injuring his hamstring. Picture: AAP

AFL Barometer: Dogs dealt brutal injury blow

WESTERN Bulldogs captain Easton Wood could miss up to three weeks after succumbing to a hamstring injury.

The Bulldogs have this afternoon added Wood, 28, to their injury list, and say he will miss 2-3 weeks.

Wood had 14 touches in Friday night's win over Carlton.

He has suffered ongoing hamstring issues since arriving at the club in 2007.

"Although he got through the game, scans have confirmed since that he has got a low-grade hamstring injury," club medical services boss Chris Bell said.

"He definitely won't play this week because we don't want to take any risks, but we expect him to be available in the next two to three weeks."

The news is worse for Jack Redpath, who will miss up to three months after knee surgery.

"Jack has suffered some soreness in his knee over the last two weeks, Bell said.

"Unfortunately it hasn't settled and we had to proceed to surgery. The surgery involved a repair to his lateral meniscus which is a shock-absorbing pad in his knee.

"Unfortunately the time frame for the recovery for this sort of operation is about 10-12 weeks."


Easton Wood could miss up to three weeks for the Western Bulldogs. Picture: Getty Images
Easton Wood could miss up to three weeks for the Western Bulldogs. Picture: Getty Images


JUST when it seemed Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley would have the luxury of a healthy list, the Magpies were hit with fresh set of injury concerns after Sunday's gallant loss to Richmond.

Forward Ben Reid is set for a lengthy stint on the sidelines with an achilles injury, while James Aish is also likely to miss a few games with a PCL.

The Magpies could regain Taylor Adams and Darcy Moore this weekend but Daniel Wells, Alex Fasolo and Jamie Elliott aren't far away either.

Meanwhile, Richmond coach Damien Hardwick said the Tigers would be nursing a few sore bodies over the next couple days.Scroll down for the latest injury news and selection analysis from every team.




Eddie Betts (hamstring) test

Kyle Cheney (hamstring) test

Brad Crouch (groin) 3-4 weeks

Sam Gibson (hamstring) 1-2 weeks

Kyle Hartigan (hamstring) 1-2 weeks

Alex Keath (ankle) 1-2 weeks

Jake Kelly (hand) test

David Mackay (hip/glute) test

Andrew McPherson (groin) 3-4 weeks

Lachlan Murphy (hamstring) test

Rory Sloane (foot) test

Brodie Smith (knee) indefinite

Taylor Walker (hamstring) TBC


ON THE BLOCK: Much of Adelaide's selection issues for the Saturday night home match against Carlton will revolve around the fitness of captain Taylor Walker, who did not play in the second half of the eight-goal win against Gold Coast after experiencing hamstring tightness, and Rory Sloane. Wingman David Mackay (hip/glute) pulled up sore against the Suns so the jury is out on his availability. The player under the most pressure to hold his spot on form is two-gamer Myles Poholke, who managed just eight disposals and 18 SuperCoach points against the Suns.

ON THE CUSP: Betts appears certain to return after missing two matches with a strained hamstring after saying on radio last week that he felt he could have played against Gold Coast. Sloane is a chance although Pyke has vowed to be cautious with him, saying he only wants him back when he is fit enough to play at his brilliant best. Defender Jake Kelly could be available after hurting his hand against the Swans. Former Giant Curtly Hampton is pressing for selection after being named Adelaide's best in its SANFL loss to Norwood on his return from a groin injury. Rookie-listed midfielder Patrick Wilson also is pushing hard for selection.

ANDREW CAPEL'S FORECAST: Eddie Betts - the Crows' leading goalkicker for the past four years - should return to play against his old club unless Pyke takes the conservative approach against a winless team Adelaide should beat. Kelly is expected to be back while there are fitness doubts over Walker and Mackay. Hampton and Wilson are the obvious players to make the leap from the SANFL to AFL side.




Jarrod Berry (ankle) TBC

Jack Payne (shin) 1 week

Sam Skinner (knee) indefinite

Toby Wooller (finger) 7 weeks


ON THE BLOCK: Jarrod Berry hurt his ankle in a tackle and limped off the ground. Dayne Zorko struggled again, picking up just 10 disposals for the second week in a row, but he's too important to leave out. Nick Robertson was reported for striking Harrison Himmelberg off the ball in the third quarter.

ON THE CUSP: Luke Hodge should come back into the team after he was rested. Ryan Bastinac booted four goals in the NEAFL and has to be considered to give the Lions another much-needed scoring option.

CHRIS VERNUCCIO'S FORECAST: The good news was the Lions weren't blown out of the water by premiership contender GWS. Putting aside Zorko and Eric Hipwood's form woes, the problem with Brisbane is too many players are servicable and need to put their mark on a game. Players such as Allen Christensen, Lewis Taylor, Nick Robertson, Daniel McStay, Charlie Cameron (who had a rare day without a goal), Stefan Martin and Ryan Lester aren't getting enough of the ball.





Ciaran Byrne (quad) test

Sam Docherty (knee) season

Matthew Kreuzer (groin) test

Matthew Lobbe (hamstring) 1 week

Cillian McDaid (foot) 2-3 weeks

Marc Murphy (foot) 2 weeks

Jarrod Pickett (wrist) 7 weeks

Alex Silvagni (hamstring) test

Jacob Weitering (thigh) test

Tom Williamson (back) 2 weeks


ON THE BLOCK: Jack Silvagni only registered four kicks under the Friday night lights and still doesn't look comfortable at AFL level. Andrew Phillips won the ruck contest but if Matthew Kreuzer returns he is likely to make way. There will be plenty of discussion at match committee - are recycled players such as Cam O'Shea and Aaron Mullett the way forward?

ON THE CUSP: Darcy Lang emerged unscathed from his comeback game, collecting 17 disposals in the VFL. The ex-Cat played through the midfield and should press in coming weeks. Harrison Macreadie and Pat Kerr should be considered while Kreuzer and Jacob Weitering should overcome niggles.

SAM LANDSBERGER'S FORECAST: Brendon Bolton's reset has become a "full-blown" rebuild and while the coach hopes to win a couple of games by the halfway mark, a glance at the fixture is far from friendly. Is next week's clash against Essendon the best chance to break the duck? At 0-6 - the club's worst start in history - the Blues are hurting. But, as Bolton pointed out, the amount of talented kids in the right age bracket is exciting. Forget talk about trading the No.1 pick (in a strong draft) for Dylan Shiel, re-signing Patrick Cripps and Charlie Curnow beyond 2019 should be Stephen Silvagni's No.1 assignment.



Ben Reid comes off the ground after injuring his achilles. Picture: AAP
Ben Reid comes off the ground after injuring his achilles. Picture: AAP




James Aish (knee) TBC

Taylor Adams (hamstring) test

Tim Broomhead (broken leg) season

Jamie Elliott (hamstring) test

Tyson Goldsack (knee) season

Levi Greenwood (knee and quad) test

Kayle Kirby (heart) indefinite

Tom Langdon (soreness) test

Brayden Maynard (ankle) TBC

Darcy Moore (hamstring) test

Ben Reid (achilles) TBC

Josh Smith (hamstring) test


ON THE BLOCK: The Magpies are counting the cost of their loss to Richmond with two serious injuries. Reid limped off the ground late with an achilles, something which could rule him out for months if the damage is bad. Likewise, James Aish hurt the PCL ligament in his knee and could also be out for more than one month. Brayden Maynard rolled his ankle but is tipped to face the Lions. Tom Langdon may also return from soreness. He was a late withdrawal.

ON THE CUSP: Collingwood will look to regain midfielder Taylor Adams and key tall Darcy Moore, while Alex Fasolo will also push for selection. His form has been building in the VFL. Nathan Buckley said Daniel Wells was unlikely but would be available for selection. Moore is important because he could replace injured centre half forward Darcy Moore.

JAY CLARK'S FORECAST: The Pies will have a light week on the track ahead of Sunday's trip to Brisbane to play the Lions at the Gabba. The Magpies played three games in 10 days including Sunday's 43-point loss to Richmond. But the scoreboard flattered the Tigers and the Magpies were much better than the margin suggested. Collingwood has won eight of its last 10 games against the Lions.





Josh Begley (knee) season

Mitch Brown (calf) test

Travis Colyer (foot) 1-2 weeks

Matt Dea (leg) test

Orazio Fantasia (groin) test

Martin Gleeson (ankle) 6 weeks

Josh Green (hamstring) test


ON THE BLOCK: Take your pick of out of sorts Bombers. Jackson Merrett will probably make way after two chances at AFL level while youngster Matt Guelfi committed some costly errors against Melbourne. What has happened to Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti? Where is Adam Saad's halfback explosion that we saw at Gold Coast? What on earth has happened to Joe Daniher, who kicked 65 goals last year? He is the biggest problem right now.

ON THE CUSP: Orazio Fantasia should be passed fit, Conor McKenna is available after serving a three-match biting suspension while Tom Bellchambers and David Myers were rested. Surely all come in. The VFL had a bye.

SAM LANDSBERGER'S FORECAST: This team has too much talent to be playing this poorly. The third quarter lapses are staggering - they've been outscored by 25, 14, 5, 4, 13 and 37 points. They're giving up three goals straight after halftime and have kicked 17 goals in the past fortnight with a potent attack. Trouble at 2-4.





Matt Taberner (broken foot) TBC

Harley Bennell (calf) TBC

Sean Darcy (knee) 5-6 weeks

Hugh Dixon (ankle) 5-6 weeks

Brady Grey (hamstring) 1 week

Bradley Hill (knee) TBC

Griffin Logue (foot) 3-4 weeks

Lee Spurr (knee) 3-4 weeks

Matt Taberner (foot) 6-7 weeks

Michael Walters (knee) TBC


ON THE BLOCK: Livewire Michael Walters is expected to miss a month after suffering a medial ligament injury in his left knee in the opening quarter of Fremantle's eight-point western derby loss on Sunday. Ruckman Aaron Sandilands looks likely to avoid being rested when Fremantle tackle reigning premier Richmond at the MCG on Sunday.

ON THE CUSP: Veteran defender Michael Johnson wasn't convincing as Sandilands' back-up ruckman in the derby, meaning coach Ross Lyon may look at other ruck options. Injury-prone tall Michael Apeness impressed in a ruck/forward role for Peel Thunder, finishing with a game-high 37 hitouts and a goal. Experienced duo Tom Sheridan and Danyle Pearce were also among Peel's best in a disappointing loss, putting their hand up for a recall.

JORDAN McARDLE'S FORECAST: Beating top side Richmond on their home turf isn't exactly an easy task, but Fremantle did it last season at the 'G thanks to David Mundy's after-the-siren heroics. The Dockers are one of eight sides with a 3-3 record in a mid-table logjam, but their growing injury list and lack of depth is a concern. It took cross-town rivals West Coast to hand Fremantle their first Perth Stadium loss, with two winnable home games coming up against St Kilda (Round 8) and North Melbourne (Round 10).



Will Gary Ablett make a shock return against the Giants? Picture: Alison Wynd
Will Gary Ablett make a shock return against the Giants? Picture: Alison Wynd




Gary Ablett (hamstring) test

Nakia Cockatoo (knee) TBC

Cam Guthrie (ankle) 5-6 weeks

Lachie Henderson (knee) indefinite

George Horlin-Smith (concussion) test

Lincoln McCarthy (quad) test

Quinton Narkle (knee) 2-3 weeks

Brandan Parfitt (foot) TBC

Scott Selwood (concussion) test

Sam Simpson (knee) TBC

Harry Taylor (foot) indefinite


ON THE BLOCK: A lot of watching of video will be taking place at the Cattery after the last-quarter debacle. The Cats have lots of injury concerns with George Horlin-Smith (concussion) and Brandon Parfitt (foot) joining the list over the weekend. Parfitt was a late withdrawal and coach Chris Scott wasn't sure how long he would be out given the conservative approach taken with any foot injuries. Ruckman Rhys Stanley is the player most in the gun after the Swans ran rampant in the centre square with a push to get the more traditional tap ruckman in Zac Smith back into the set-up.

ON THE CUSP: Scott Selwood should return from concussion for Friday night's home clash with GWS while Daniel Menzel (groin) is also expected to come back after one week's rest. The most intrigue will be around Gary Ablett who trained strongly on Saturday and is talking up being ready to return from a month out with a hamstring strain. Given its his second soft tissue issue of the season, the coaching staff will be very conservative which makes for some interesting discussions at selection.

SCOTT GULLAN'S FORECAST: I'm backing Gazza to win the battle and come back for the crucial prime-time Giants clash with Scott Selwood and Menzel to cap off a trio of impressive inclusions.




Pearce Hanley (dislocated shoulder) 10 weeks

Kade Kolodjashnij (concussion) test

Sean Lemmens (broken hand) 2-3 weeks

Darcy MacPherson (broken leg) 10-12 weeks

Tom Nicholls (shoulder) 14 weeks

Jack Scrimshaw (cheekbone) 3-4 weeks

Harrison Wigg (ankle) 5 weeks

Peter Wright (calf) test


ON THE BLOCK: Rory Thompson suffered an ankle injury against Adelaide but returned and played well against Josh Jenkins. He will be monitored but should take his place against the Bulldogs. Veteran Matt Rosa is clinging to his spot, while Ben Ainsworth is battling for form and Sam Day looks tired after playing every week following a year out of the game.

ON THE CUSP: The Suns looked slow on the outside against Adelaide so the name Aaron Hall will be debated at length in match committee. However third year forward Callum Ah Chee could also come under consideration. The Suns want him in the side and he has now played two NEAFL games after a bad hamstring strain wiped-out the end of his pre-season. They may decide to be more cautious and give him an extra week.

ANDREW HAMILTON'S FORECAST: The Suns had an off night against Adelaide but still sit with a 3-3 record and are desperate to hit the midway point of their season and the return to their home ground at Metricon Stadium with as close to an even ledger as possible. Coach Stuart Dew will be imploring his side for a huge effort in Ballarat and they are capable of taking the points.




Aidan Corr (shoulder) TBC

Toby Greene (foot) TBC

Josh Kelly (groin) test

Adam Kennedy (knee) test

Zac Langdon (knee) TBC

Rory Lobb (knee) test

Tom Scully (ankle) 7-9 weeks

Will Setterfield (knee) season

Lachie Tiziani (knee) season

Zac Williams (achilles) indefinite


ON THE BLOCK: Nick Shipley was quiet in his debut and could lose his spot to Aidan Bonar, who is yet to play senior football for the Giants. He was taken with pick 11 in last year's draft.

ON THE CUSP: Josh Kelly has missed the last three weeks with a groin problem and is a chance of returning this week for Friday's clash with Geelong at GMHBA Stadium. Rory Lobb's bone bruising on his knee has been slow to recover as well but could be back too. Aidan Bonar was among the best in the Gianst NEAFL loss to Brisbane.

NEIL CORDY'S FORECAST: The Giants will look to Sydney's playbook to claim their first win against Geelong on their home turf. The Swans went to an ultra-small line up and dominated the contests and clearances. This will mean Rory Lobb will get another week on the sidelines to recover.




Grant Birchall (knee) 6 weeks

Dylan Moore (shoulder) 2 weeks

Paul Puopolo (hamstring) 3-4 weeks

Cyril Rioli (knee) 4 weeks

Liam Shiels (back) test


ON THE BLOCK: It's harsh to say, but Round 6 debutant James Worpel's position in the team is tentative once Liam Shiels comes back. Worpel will be a powerhouse in the middle for the Hawks one day, but will probably have to make way. The vice-captain was close to playing against St Kilda but in the end medicos opted not to risk his dodgy back. Gun recruit Jarman Impey was an underachiever against the Saints, however a team-best eight tackles might be the thing save him a spell in the twos.

ON THE CUSP: Liam Shiels should be back for the clash with Essendon at the MCG on Saturday. Jonathon Ceglar is only a week or two away from his return from a back injury. The big ruckman is finding match fitness at Box Hill. It is only a matter of time before the Hawks pull the trigger on this return. Ben McEvoy worked tirelessly against the Saints winning 25 hit-outs but in the end he needed a chop-out from Roughead and O'Brien. Most sides are showing their commitment to one ruckman but the Hawks figure if they have two big men who can influence the game in the ruck and up forward, they will play both.

JAMES BRESNEHAN'S FORECAST:The competition is so close and the battle for spots in the top four is red-hot, but few would have thought Hawthorn would have been one of them. The Hawks have been the most consistent team in the top eight over the past five games - win, loss, win, loss, win - and based on that are due to drop their clash with Essendon. However, the Bombers don't have the cattle to stop Tom Mitchell, Isaac Smith and Harry Morrison in the middle, or Luke Breust and Jack Gunston up front. That's why Hawks will win and be about halfway to securing a spot in the finals.



Christian Petracca is likely to be back this week. Picture: Getty Images
Christian Petracca is likely to be back this week. Picture: Getty Images




Dean Kent (hamstring) TBC

Pat McKenna (hamstring) indefinite

Christian Petracca (finger) test

Aaron vandenBerg (ankle) 7-8 weeks

Jack Viney (foot) 2 weeks


ON THE BLOCK: Alex Neal-Bullen registered only three kicks against the Bombers although his 51 pressure points were far from the worst. Hard to see much change at the Demons after their best half of footy for the season.

ON THE CUSP: Christian Petracca will slot straight back in against St Kilda - the team which probably should've drafted him. Jack Viney is a week or two behind while Sam Frost will be considered if coach Simon Goodwin wants an extra tall defender. Frost collected 19 disposals for Casey although Tim Smith (20 disposals and 10 tackles) was the VFL best.

SAM LANDSBERGER'S FORECAST: Really like where the Demons are at. They play a forward-half game - which is sustainable - and, despite the scoreboard, were actually pretty good against the red-hot Tigers. They backed that up with a dominant second half against Essendon and aren't far away from fielding their best line-up. If they can reap close to maximum reward for inside entries they can become a premiership force. And Oscar McDonald has become a helluva full-back.




Shaun Higgins (concussion) test

Declan Mountford (ankle) test

Ed Vickers-Willis (concussion) test

Declan Watson (knee) indefinite


ON THE BLOCK: Shaun Higgins didn't play last week, and remains in some doubt after his sickening concussion against Hawthorn in the previous round. Brad Scott won't chase an answer until Wednesday when a clearer picture will be available. Higgins sat in the coaches' box in the game against Port Adelaide and has made some big steps forward over the past few days. But the certainty is the Kangaroos won't take any unnecessary risks with the star midfielder, and if there is any small concern, he will have another week on the sidelines.

ON THE CUSP: Mason Wood is yet to play a senior game for the Roos this season, but took a big step towards changing that when he kicked six goals in the VFL clash on the weekend. He and Taylor Garner, who kicked four of his own in the VFL, are knocking on the door of a senior recall after strong performances on the weekend.

GLENN McFARLANE'S FORECAST: Tough ask for the Kangaroos this week taking on Sydney at the SCG. Brad Scott's team got beaten around the ball early against Port Adelaide last Saturday, and as much as they fixed that across the next three quarters, it was in Scott's words "too little too late." Ben Brown was beaten and still kicked four goals, which is a sign he is never out of the play for long, and the burgeoning young North Melbourne midfield is seemingly getting better all the time. Hard to see them winning this week, but the Roos will take some more scalps soon.




Matthew Broadbent (ankle) indefinite

Willem Drew (foot) indefinite

Hamish Hartlett (knee) season

Paddy Ryder (achilles) available

Chad Wingard (hamstring) 2-3 weeks


ON THE BLOCK: Someone could be quite unlucky at Port Adelaide this week with Paddy Ryder coming straight back in. Wingard out means it could be as simple as one out, one in, but if Hinkley wants to rejig his line-up then Dom Barry or Aidyn Johnson could be in trouble. Both were inclusions for the win over the Kangaroos and both played well, but Barry was the quieter of the two and could be a little nervous heading towards selection for the trip to Perth to play West Coast.

ON THE CUSP: Ryder is the obvious inclusion after missing the past five weeks with an achilles injury and that will allow Charlie Dixon to play permanent forward again. There are plenty of Magpies putting their hand-up for selection led by Jasper Pittard, who is returning from a hamstring injury and midfielders Jack Trengove and Tom Rockliff.

REECE HOMFRAY'S FORECAST: Port Adelaide has its mojo back after beating North Melbourne and will go to Perth to play West Coast pretty confident having rolled the Eagles on their home ground last year. Wingard out is a blow but Ryder back is huge. I'd expect Jasper Pittard to essentially replace Hamish Hartlett, who ruptured his ACL at training last week, but Trengove and Rockliff may have to wait for a senior recall.



Chad Wingard hurt his hamstring against the Roos. Picture: AAP
Chad Wingard hurt his hamstring against the Roos. Picture: AAP




Daniel Rioli (foot) TBC


ON THE BLOCK: Maybe someone will need a rest this week, but it's hard to say who that will be until later. Reece Conca has been in brilliant form but he as well as Kamdyn McIntosh, who has also been good, were a bit quiet. Jack Graham also had limited impact.

ON THE CUSP: Sam Lloyd was prolific in the VFL but the really interesting one is Brandon Ellis, dropped after 111 consecutive games. Hardwick said it was one of the most difficult calls he's had to make and he backed his proud defender to return to the senior side. The question is, when.

ELIZA SEWELL'S FORECAST: The Tiger train won't be derailed against the improving Dockers this Sunday. While Freo caused an upset to defeat Richmond by two points in this match in Round 8 last year, can't see it happening this time.




Josh Bruce (back) 6-7 weeks

Darren Minchington (knee) 2-3 weeks

Dylan Roberton (heart) indefinite

Koby Stevens (concussion) indefinite


ON THE BLOCK: When it was his time to shine in a low-scoring affair on a slippery deck against Hawthorn in Launceston on Saturday night, teenager Nick Coffield did not deliver. He had seven touches, and of those two were contested. The Saints must decide whether to continue feeding their No.8 draft pick to the wolves or give him more time to learn his craft in the twos.

ON THE CUSP: Ruckman Billy Longer must be about to return. The Saints can't ignore his VFL form and he unexpectedly finds himself is a race with Rowan Marshall to get into the side as a ruckman. Marshall played primarily as a forward last year but has emerged as a promising ruckman.

JAMES BRESNEHAN'S FORECAST: Based on its form against Hawthorn, St Kilda will upset the applecart of a lot of teams aspiring to be in the top eight and will influence who plays finals. Unfortunately, the Saints won't be one of them. Six rounds in, they have one win, four losses and that gallant draw with GWS. At this stage, only Brisbane and Carlton are better prospects for the wooden spoon. Having said that, they are a solid chance to beat Melbourne at Etihad on Sunday.




James Bell (hamstring) 4 weeks

Jordan Dawson (quad) 4 weeks

Jordan Foote (toe) 4 weeks

Lance Franklin (bruised heel) TBC

Dan Hannebery (groin) TBC

Alex Johnson (groin) 4 weeks

Lewis Melican (hamstring) test

Sam Naismith (knee) season

Toby Pink (ankle) 2 weeks

Sam Reid (quad) 8-9 weeks

Dean Towers (eye) TBC



ON THE BLOCK: Dan Robinson was quiet in his first senior game of 2018 and will come under pressure to hold his place from Dean Towers.

ON THE CUSP: Lance Franklin remains a week-by-week proposition with his bruised heel. Dan Hannebery is in the same boat with is groin strain. Dean Towers is expected to recover from the poke in the eye he copped at training. Lewis Melican is also close to a return from a hamstring strain. Darcy Cameron was in good form in the NEAFL loss to Gold Coast kicking two goals as was Tom McCartin if John Longmire decides he needs some added height against North Melbourne on Saturday.

NEIL CORDY'S FORECAST: After the win against Geelong John Longmire will feel less pressure to rush Franklin back into the line up and will give him more time to recover from his bruised heel. Dan Hannebery will continue his recovery while Dean Towers should come back into the team to help.




Hamish Brayshaw (knee) 2 weeks

Lewis Jetta (calf) TBC

Eric Mackenzie (toe) indefinite

Tony Olango (knee) test

Luke Partington (hamstring) test

Liam Ryan (ankle) 9 weeks

Daniel Venables (ankle) 10 weeks


ON THE BLOCK: Chris Masten could be in trouble over an incident involving Docker Ed Langdon. The in-form midfielder appeared to drive his forearm into Langdon's face before taking a short swing which appeared to land on his upper body. Lewis Jetta hurt his calf in the Eagles' thrilling derby win and is in doubt to face Port Adelaide, while fellow speedster Jack Petrucclle struggled to get into the game in his AFL debut.

ON THE CUSP: West Coast's WAFL affiliate East Perth is flying at the moment, with a number of Eagles-listed players driving their rise up the ladder. Midfielder Mark Hutchings had a game-high 33 possessions and 14 marks in the Royals' 66-point thrashing of Peel Thunder on Sunday. Tall forward Matthew Allen booted five goals straight, ruckman Fraser McInnes (21 disposals, 14 hitouts and a goal) continued his strong form and recruit Brendon Ah Chee (15 disposals, six tackles and a goal) was solid in his second game back from an ankle injury.

JORDAN McARDLE'S FORECAST: The Eagles keep proving the doubters wrong, recording their fifth consecutive win and are percentage off top spot. The next month will be a massive test of how far Adam Simpson's men have come, with four top-eight opponents in a row starting with the Power at Perth Stadium on Saturday. If they can get at least two wins from their next four matches, it will go a long way to booking a finals berth.




Marcus Adams (ankle) 4 weeks

Kieran Collins (ankle) 3 weeks

Hayden Crozier (knee) test

Tory Dickson (hamstring) 4-5 weeks

Tom Liberatore (knee) season

Brad Lynch (hamstring) 7 weeks

Dale Morris (knee) 5-6 weeks

Liam Picken (concussion) indefinite

Jack Redpath (knee) 3 weeks

Clay Smith (knee) 5 weeks

Roarke Smith (hip) 1-2 weeks

Josh Schache (ankle) test


ON THE BLOCK: The Bulldogs got through with a clean bill of health - bar Caleb Daniel's helmet, of course - and finally showed signs of improvement after the disappointing loss to Fremantle. Five Dogs had played less than 10 games but showed no such signs, with the likes of Billy Gowers and Aaron Naughton doing their bit. Depending on returning players, coach Luke Beveridge could well keep the status quo this week.

ON THE CUSP: With a bye in the VFL, Lucas Webb and Mitch Honeychurch had no opportunity to stake their claim for a recall, while Josh Schache and Roarke Smith are expected to face fitness tests after ankle and hip troubles respectively.

LAUREN WOOD'S FORECAST: The Bulldogs have a great opportunity to consolidate this week. They're off to Ballarat to take on the Suns having won their last four against Gold Coast and will be desperate to get a win at Mars Stadium having lost their previous encounter at what they are hoping will become a fortress-style home away from home. Tom Boyd showed glimpses of what he's capable of and can be seriously scary when he's on song. Marcus Bontempelli has struck the balance between midfield and forward and had serious impact against the Blues so look out for the young gun to make a return to his best. The Suns have been solid in their long stint away from home and can't be underestimated.