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ADELAIDE

v Port Adelaide, won by 60pts 

v Carlton, won by 38pts

What they achieved Most encouraging was the Crows’ ability to convert their advantage in general play (read inside 50s) into scoreboard reward, which was an area of concern in 2013, but a strength in 2012 when they made the preliminary final. The Crows kicked 31 goals across the two games but, more importantly, took 11 and 21 marks inside 50 – a category they ranked 2nd in 2012, but slipped to 13th last year.

Who looks good  Brenton Sanderson admitted to winking at a member of the list management staff during Eddie Betts’ five-goal performance against the Power. They also like young gun Matthew Crouch, who tackles as hard as he hunts the ball. Matthew Wright averaged 32 disposals across the two games, Rory Sloane had two good games, and Richard Douglas had 20-plus touches twice and also kicked goals.

Injuriy list 

Ricky Henderson (fibula)  4-5 months

Brent Reilly (shoulder)  2-3 weeks

Nathan van Berlo Achilles,  6 months

Taylor Walker (knee)  2-4 months

 

BRISBANE LIONS

v Hawthorn, lost by 131 pts

v Gold Coast, won by 47 pts

What they achieved Not much in a belting from the Hawks, but at least it got better in the win over the under-manned Gold Coast. As a general rule, the Lions struggled to win the contested ball under Michael Voss, so on that score, Justin Leppitsch made inroads. The Lions had 114 less disposals against the Hawks, yet only eight less when the ball was in dispute. Similarly, they won the contested possession count by seven and that ignited their play against the Suns.

Who looks good Dayne Zorko had two solid outings and along with Josh Green and Luke McGuane showed glimpses in the Suns game of Leppitsch’s strong emphasis on defensive pressure. McGuane kicked three in that match to put up his hand for round one and top-draft pick James Aish looked comfortable at the level. Brent Moloney, Tom Rockliff and Jack Redden all showed their class against the Suns.

Injury list

Jonathan Brown  (foot) 2-3 weeks

Darcy Gardiner (foot)  4 weeks

Stefan Martin (back)  TBC

Ash McGrath(calf) 1-2 weeks

Brent Staker (calf)  1-2 weeks

Lewis Taylor (foot)  2-3 weeks

 

CARLTON

v North Melbourne, won by 7 pts

v Adelaide, lost by 38 pts

What they achieved The Blues led at every break of their two games, closing out the Roos but getting over run by the Crows. That was no surprise to Mick Malthouse, for a cluster of players coming back from injury were expected to fatigue late in that loss. Crucially, star recruit Dale Thomas was among them, shining in the first three quarters. Matthew Watson could stand up as a key back, which keeps the Lachie Henderson swingman option up Malthouse’s sleeve.

Who looks good Recruit Andrejs Everitt could not have got off to a better start with three goals and 17 disposals against the Roos, and he was good against the Crows, too. Tom Bell was the one to watch out of pre-season training and it flowed into games, while Marc Murphy and Bryce Gibbs performed as they should against the Crows in their first outing.

Injury list

Andrew Carrazzo  (calf)  4 weeks

Sam Docherty (quad)  2-3 weeks

Lachie Henderson (groin) 1-2 weeks

Chris Judd  (achilles) 5-6 weeks

 

COLLINGWOOD

v Geelong, lost by 2pts

v Richmond, lost by 48 pts

What they achieved The game against Geelong was a cracker and in the end, the loss was irrelevant. There were clear signs in both games of the changing game plan from Malthouse to Buckley, with the Pies trying to use more handball and run out of defence. The issue of where to play Ben Reid emerged again after he kicked five goals against the Tigers, while the Marley Williams story ran throughout and his emerging talent will be missed in the short term.

Who looks good Jesse White starred against the Cats with five goals to give hope that he is the tag team partner Travis Cloke needs. Another recruit, Taylor Adams, also found a heap of the ball in that game, while Ben Kennedy looked sharp in both outings.

Injury list  

Jarryd Blair (toe) 1-2 weeks

Tim Broomhead (hand) 3-4 weeks

Sam Dwyer (groin) 2 weeks

Patrick Karnezis (groin) 5 weeks

Paul Seedsman (hip) 5 weeks

Josh Thomas  (knee) 2 weeks

Alan Toovey(knee) test

 

ESSENDON

v Gold Coast, lost by 1 pt

v  Port Adelaide, lost by 25 pts

What they achieved The issues off field just won’t go away, but the most pressing one on it is the forward structure. And while there were no wins to show for it, Mark Thompson had to be buoyed by the changes he made to address the situation, especially against the Suns. Jake Carlisle kicked three goals and the combination with Joe Daniher proved dangerous. Down back, Michael Hurley looked right at home.   

Who looks good Daniher was impressive kicking two in both games, and Paul Chapman seemed to have plenty of life in his legs gathering a game-high 24 touches against the Power. But the standout performance was David Zaharakis’  43 disposals against the Suns, one that showed he might be ready to go to another level.   

Injury list 

Tom Bellchambers (ankle) 4-6 weeks

Alex Browne (knee)  Season

Michael Hibberd (hamstring)  TBC

Jake Melksham Suspended* Round 3

Jason Winderlich (hamstring) TBC

 

FREMANTLE

v West Coast, lost by 84 pts

v W Bulldogs, won by 28 pts

What they achieved If this wasn’t Fremantle and Ross Lyon steering the ship there might be cause for slight alarm – a heavy loss to the cross-town rival (albeit under-manned) and losing structurally-important recruit Scott Gumbleton for at least 12 weeks to a serious hamstring injury. But the Dockers know when they want to be winning, and they showed they had an extra gear in burning off the plucky Dogs in the final quarter on the road.

Who looks good How heartening was it to Aaron Sandilands get his hand on 47 hit-outs and a handful of intercept marks playing against the current All-Australian ruckman Will Minson. Nat Fyfe stood tall in the Eagles drubbing, while Matthew Pavlich kicked two goals and grabbed 11 marks in a vintage effort against the Dogs. Michael Walters also provided a spark. 

Injury list – provided by club

Kepler Bradley (knee) 2-3 weeks

Zac Clarke (knee) 2-3 weeks

Jonathon Griffin (knee)  TBC

Scott Gumbleton (hamstring)  TBC

Garrick Ibbotson (achilles)  2-3 weeks

Anthony Morabito (knee) TBC

Alex Silvagni (ankle)  Test

Nick Suban (suspended)  Round 2

 

GEELONG

v Collingwood, won by 2 pts

v Melbourne, won by 13 pts

What they achieved It was all good news siren to siren, where the Cats showed no reason to discount them contending yet again. They moved the ball beautifully against the Pies, in particular. But injury has hit the Cats as hard as any club, most notably Nathan Vardy’s season-ending knee injury at training. A hunt for a replacement to help Tom Hawkins is now on. Key players Allen Christensen, Steven Motlop and Joel Selwood have also had their injury troubles. Importantly, Hamish McIntosh got through unscathed.

Who looks good Josh Caddy has been a bull grinding his way through contests in both games and Mitch Duncan was a standout against Melbourne. Harry Taylor kicked two goals displaying his swingman-capabilities, while Steve Johnson, Jimmy Bartel and Corey Enright keep doing what they always do.

Injury list 

George Burbury (jaw) 6 weeks

Allen Christensen (back) 12 weeks

Shane Kersten (back) Test

Daniel Menzel (knee) Indefinite

Steven Motlop (knee) 5-7 weeks

Jordan Murdoch (back) Test

Joel Selwood (hamstring) TBC

Nathan Vardy (knee) Season

 

GOLD COAST

v Essendon, won by 1 pt

v Brisbane, lost by 47 pts

What they achieved The Suns look to be building strong midfield depth to support Gary Ablett and rising star Jaeger O’Meara, with David Swallow and Michael Rischitelli showing promise that they could step up this year alongside Dion Prestia, Harley Bennell and others. Many of their best players names including Ablett sat out against the Lions, but  the ruck still looks the problem is was last year - with the Suns getting badly beaten in that area in both games.

Who looks good It didn’t take long for Jack Martin to increase the massive hype that already follows him. It was quality not quantity with his touches, mostly silky and leading to something good for the Suns. Brandon Matera also gave a look at the speed and smarts around goal that injury stopped him from contributing last year.

Injury list

Nathan Bock (leg) TBC

Jack Hutchins (back) TBC

Trent McKenzie (calf) Test

Dion Prestia (calf) Test

Zac Smith (knee) Indefinite

Seb Tape (hamstring) Test

Rory Thompson (hip) Test

 

GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY

v St Kilda, won by 68 points

v Sydney, lost by 40 points

What they achieved A win to start off, and the Giants will take that no matter what month it is. They never gave up against the Swans, and the rain of super goals against the Saints was exciting to watch and confidence-boosting for a young team. Jonathon Patton got through two hit-outs on return from his knee injury, and the mature-age recruits - Shane Mumford, Heath Shaw and co - all showed they could serve their purpose.  

Who looks good The Giants are flushed with emerging midfielders but insiders say Adam Treloar is the pick of the bunch and his 32 disposals against the Saints did nothing to dispel that. Dylan Shiel booted three super goals in a blistering performance in the same game, and they look to have found another in top draft pick Josh Kelly. Jeremy Cameron looks set to continue on where he left off last year.

Injury list 

Matt Buntine (concussion) Test

Tim Mohr (foot) 6 weeks

Andrew Phillips (hamstring) Test

Sam Schulz (shoulder) 10 weeks

 

HAWTHORN

v Brisbane, won by 131 pts

v Nth Melbourne, won by 65 pts

What they achieved About everything you could as the reigning premier looking to re-mark your territory - two commanding wins with a host of different contributors and new faces creating even more pressure for spots. It is too early to say how much and in what ways Lance Franklin will be missed, but the Hawks had no trouble finding goals and moving the ball forward to its new structure of Jarryd Roughead and Jack Gunston, with David Hale also helping out. Dayle Garlett’s setback has been the only negative.  

Who looks good Liam Shiels has relished a greater role in the midfield, racking up 28 and 30 disposals in the two games, while Will Langford bobbed up with three goals playing on Jack Ziebell against the Roos. Gunston kicked five against the Lions and was super efficient, while and Cyril Rioli has been his old lively self.

Injury list

Jed Anderson (illness) 3 weeks

Brian Lake (suspended) Round 4

Cyril Rioli (suspended) Round 2

Ryan Schoenmakers (knee) 2-4 weeks

Brendan Whitecross (knee) Indefinite

 

MELBOURNE

v Richmond, won by 14 pts

v Geelong, lost by 13 points

What they achieved Plenty. Firstly, they now have an on-field “brand” under Roos, and against the Tigers we saw the work done through the pre-season, an ability to retain possession and stop teams from mounting big scoring runs against them. The Demons had 183 more disposals than the Tigers and 94 more against the Cats. And they have not had either of Mitch Clark or Chris Dawes to kick to as a key forward yet. The additions of more experienced bodies to the midfield has already made the team more competitive in that area.   

Who looks good There was no greater crowd-lifting burst than the one Jay Kennedy-Harris produced against the Tigers, the pint-sized goal-sneak snagging three goals to launch the Demons to victory. Bernie Vince looks a new man, stacking up lots and lots of possessions, and same goes for Jack Trengove - fit, free and maybe ready to flourish.

Injury list

Mitch Clark (hamstring) 2-3 weeks

Chris Dawes (calf) Test

Colin Garland (ankle) 2-4 weeks

Cameron Pedersen (hamstring) 1 week

Aidan Riley* (leg) 6 weeks

Luke Tapscott (knee) 2 weeks

 

NORTH MELBOURNE

v Carlton, lost by 7 pts

v  Hawthorn, lost by 65 pts

What they achieved You can see the Roos are fit, the effect from the hardest pre-season campaign under Brad Scott. They came storming back in the last quarter against the Blues when they could have easily moved on to the next challenge, and they have had no problem getting their hands on the ball. The Majak Daw incident was ugly and one the club and player should not have to deal with. Widely tipped to shoot into the finals this year, the Roos have a healthy list save for captain Andrew Swallow and key recruit Nick Dal Santo has fitted in perfectly and performed so the club is unlikely to hit the panic button.

Who looks good That midfielders like Jack Ziebell, Ben Cunnington and Ryan Bastinac put in solid efforts is an encouraging sign, for the Roos need those players to take the next step. Father-son Luke McDonald also showed promise, while Daniel Wells is in his prime and doesn’t appear to be wasting it.   

Injury list 

Tom Curran (foot)  Indefinite

Taylor Garner (hamstring) 6 weeks

Kieran Harper (ankle) 4 weeks

Andrew Swallow (achilles) 8-11 weeks

 

PORT ADELAIDE

v Adelaide, lost by 60 pts

v Essendon, won by 25 points

What they achieved The Power never likes losing to Adelaide, NAB Challenge or not. Almost all of their leaders were out, which fitted nicely for those detractors who say the Power lack depth and are too young to back up their extraordinary revival in 2013. But Ken Hinkley would be heartened by the motivation in the group to redeem the result interstate against the Bombers. If the Power is to hold their position in the top eight, they need those who had standout seasons to maintain that level and, to that end, Justin Westhoff, Oliver Wines and Chad Wingard showed positive signs.

Who looks good Former Lion Jared Polec has had a big pre-season trying to impress his new club and it appears to have worked, doing so in both games. Robbie Gray could be ready to jump a level, and draft pick Jarmen Impey has speed and composure with the ball.

Injury list

Alipate Carlile (quad) Test

Jarrad Redden* (knee) 6-7 weeks

Jay Schulz  (foot) 1 week

Jackson Trengove (knee) 1 week

 

RICHMOND

v Melbourne, lost by 14 pts

v  Collingwood, won by 48 points

What they achieved Those wanting to draw too much from the loss against Melbourne would have then had a hard time reconciling the Tigers big win over the Pies. It matters little to Damien Hardwick, although what the coach does care about is the loss of key ruckman Ivan Maric, considering his spiritual value to the team and his workhorse effort in the ruck. The recruitment of Shaun Hampson has already been validated as a worthy back-up selection.

Who looks good Trent Cotchin looks free of the injury that kept his form just below his absolute best last year, which we know is elite. He had 34 disposals, 11 marks and four goals against the Pies.  There is nothing wrong with Brett Deledio and Dustin Martin, either, as they showed with flashes of brilliance in both matches. The absence of Jack Riewoldt allowed Ty Vickery to take centre stage in a different forward set up and he delivered with four goals against the Pies and three against the Demons.

Injury list 

Jake Batchelor (calf) 1 week

Matt Dea (ankle) 1-2 weeks

Ben Lennon (knee) 3-4 weeks

Ivan Maric (ankle) 6-8 weeks

Chris Newman (knee) 1-2 weeks

Jack Riewoldt (quad) Test

 

ST KILDA

v Western Bulldogs, lost by 11 pts

v GWS, lost by 68 points

What they achieved On a list of things that could go wrong for the Saints pre-season, a morale-sapping loss to GWS and a serious injury to Jack Steven would have to be right near the top. The Bulldogs game looked like going south in a hurry when the Saints could not get their hands on the ball in the first quarter, but they responded to Alan Richardson’s first official address and fought back. For those inside, the GWS loss will have to be a case of forget and move on. But for the supporters, it might be a dose of the reality that faces the Saints in this re-build.

Who looks good Rookie Eli Templeton might be one reason for Saints supporters to come to the footy this year. His blond dreadlocks, soccer skills and attitude are the makings of a fan favourite, as he showed against the Dogs. More game time and responsibility might allow Shane Savage to become the player he wants to be.

Injury list

Sam Gilbert (foot) 6-7 weeks

Tom Lee(shoulder) Test

Terry Milera(foot) 2-3 weeks

Leigh Montagna (suspended) Round 2

Jack Steven (foot) 8-10 weeks

 

SYDNEY

v GWS, won by 40 pts

v West Coast, lost by 35 pts

What they achieved It is historically unwise to judge what the Swans might produce from March onwards based on anything they do in  February. Although from an off-field standpoint, the mystery seizure scare Lance Franklin endured must have been unsettling for everyone concerned. The club says he is fine, though, and will he will be ready to take his spot in the Swans’ new-look forward line - the exact make up of which will be intriguing with Franklin, Kurt Tippett, Sam Reid and Adam Goodes all in the mix. Rhyce Shaw marked his rapid return from a knee reconstruction by getting through two games. 

Who looks good Father-son Tom Mitchell is entering his third season this year and could be ready to play a more prominent role for the Swans. He kicked two goals and had 34 disposals against GWS. Heath Grundy is rock solid as ever, and Nick Malceski is moving fast and with great danger to the opposition off half back.

Injury list

Adam Goodes (knee) 6-8 weeks

George Hewett (knee) 1 week

Luke Parker (eye) TBC

Kurt Tippett (knee) 3-5 weeks

Tommy Walsh (hamstring) Indefinite

 

WEST COAST

v Fremantle, won by 84

v Sydney, won by 35

What they achieved Clubs with a new coach and whom feel they under-achieved the previous year often attack the pre-season series with vigour. So it was for the Eagles, and you get the feeling we were heading for a Hawthorn-West Coast grand final had this been a NAB Cup competition of years gone by. There seemed to be a game plan directive to lower the eyes and hit up short targets. And move the ball quickly. Scratching for healthy bodies last year, the Eagles might have selection dilemmas of a different kind heading into round one.

Who looks good Xavier Ellis thanked Adam Simpson for the chance to extend his career by picking up 21 disposals playing loose across half back before getting subbed out against the Dockers. Chris Masten also took his chance to run riot through the middle of the ground and kick goals, and the polish of Sharrod Wellingham must have also been encouraging.  

Injury list 

Tom Barrass (hip) indefinite

Patrick McGinnity (suspended) Round 2

Beau Waters (shoulder) TBC

 

WESTERN BULLDOGS

v St Kilda, won by 11 pts

v Fremantle, lost by 28 pts

What they achieved From a development point of view, the Fremantle loss in which the Dogs trailed by just a point at three quarter time might have been worth more than the win over St Kilda. The Dogs stars of the future began to blossom late last year and will continue to this year if the pre-season is any guide ; Tom Liberatore and Jack Macrae, especially. Shaun Higgins and Tom Williams got game time, Adam Cooney moved well, and you can see what Stewart Crameri will offer.  

Who looks good Liberatore could become an A-grader quicker than first thought, and Koby Stevens and Mitch Wallis seem to have settled into roles where they could expect to regularly contribute. Jake Stringer is not a key forward but he flies at the ball like one, while Luke Dahlhaus might have a new haircut, but he is as explosive as ever around goal.

Injury list 

Jarrad Grant (foot) 1-2 weeks

Ryan Griffen (back) test

Nathan Hrovat (cheekbone) 1-2 weeks

Robert Murphy (elbow) 3-4 weeks

Clay Smith (knee) TBC

ADELAIDE

v Port Adelaide, won by 60pts 

v Carlton, won by 38pts

What they achieved Most encouraging was the Crows’ ability to convert their advantage in general play (read inside 50s) into scoreboard reward, which was an area of concern in 2013, but a strength in 2012 when they made the preliminary final. The Crows kicked 31 goals across the two games but, more importantly, took 11 and 21 marks inside 50 – a category they ranked 2nd in 2012, but slipped to 13th last year.

Who looks good  Brenton Sanderson admitted to winking at a member of the list management staff during Eddie Betts’ five-goal performance against the Power. They also like young gun Matthew Crouch, who tackles as hard as he hunts the ball. Matthew Wright averaged 32 disposals across the two games, Rory Sloane had two good games, and Richard Douglas had 20-plus touches twice and also kicked goals.

Injuriy list 

 
Ricky Henderson (fibula)  4-5 months

 
Brent Reilly (shoulder)  2-3 weeks

 
Nathan van Berlo Achilles,  6 months

 
Taylor Walker (knee)  2-4 months

BRISBANE LIONS

v Hawthorn, lost by 131 pts

v Gold Coast, won by 47 pts

What they achieved Not much in a belting from the Hawks, but at least it got better in the win over the under-manned Gold Coast. As a general rule, the Lions struggled to win the contested ball under Michael Voss, so on that score, Justin Leppitsch made inroads. The Lions had 114 less disposals against the Hawks, yet only eight less when the ball was in dispute. Similarly, they won the contested possession count by seven and that ignited their play against the Suns.

Who looks good Dayne Zorko had two solid outings and along with Josh Green and Luke McGuane showed glimpses in the Suns game of Leppitsch’s strong emphasis on defensive pressure. McGuane kicked three in that match to put up his hand for round one and top-draft pick James Aish looked comfortable at the level. Brent Moloney, Tom Rockliff and Jack Redden all showed their class against the Suns.

Injury list

 
Jonathan Brown  (foot) 2-3 weeks

 
Darcy Gardiner (foot)  4 weeks

 
Stefan Martin (back)  TBC

 
Ash McGrath(calf) 1-2 weeks

 
Brent Staker (calf)  1-2 weeks

 
Lewis Taylor (foot)  2-3 weeks

CARLTON

v North Melbourne, won by 7 pts

v Adelaide, lost by 38 pts

What they achieved The Blues led at every break of their two games, closing out the Roos but getting over run by the Crows. That was no surprise to Mick Malthouse, for a cluster of players coming back from injury were expected to fatigue late in that loss. Crucially, star recruit Dale Thomas was among them, shining in the first three quarters. Matthew Watson could stand up as a key back, which keeps the Lachie Henderson swingman option up Malthouse’s sleeve.

Who looks good Recruit Andrejs Everitt could not have got off to a better start with three goals and 17 disposals against the Roos, and he was good against the Crows, too. Tom Bell was the one to watch out of pre-season training and it flowed into games, while Marc Murphy and Bryce Gibbs performed as they should against the Crows in their first outing.

Injury list

 
Andrew Carrazzo  (calf)  4 weeks

 
Sam Docherty (quad)  2-3 weeks

 
Lachie Henderson (groin) 1-2 weeks

 
Chris Judd  (achilles) 5-6 weeks

COLLINGWOOD

v Geelong, lost by 2pts

v Richmond, lost by 48 pts

What they achieved The game against Geelong was a cracker and in the end, the loss was irrelevant. There were clear signs in both games of the changing game plan from Malthouse to Buckley, with the Pies trying to use more handball and run out of defence. The issue of where to play Ben Reid emerged again after he kicked five goals against the Tigers, while the Marley Williams story ran throughout and his emerging talent will be missed in the short term.

Who looks good Jesse White starred against the Cats with five goals to give hope that he is the tag team partner Travis Cloke needs. Another recruit, Taylor Adams, also found a heap of the ball in the same game and looked sharp, while Ben Kennedy provided much-needed launch off half-back. Alex Fasolo also got through his comeback game unscathed and impressed.   

Injury list  

 
Jarryd Blair (toe) 1-2 weeks

 
Tim Broomhead (hand) 3-4 weeks

 
Sam Dwyer (groin) 2 weeks

 
Patrick Karnezis (groin) 5 weeks

 
Paul Seedsman (hip) 5 weeks

 
Josh Thomas  (knee) 2 weeks

 
Alan Toovey(knee) test

ESSENDON

v Gold Coast, lost by 1 pt

v  Port Adelaide, lost by 25 pts

What they achieved The issues off field just won’t go away, but the most pressing one on it is the forward structure. And while there were no wins to show for it, Mark Thompson had to be buoyed by the changes he made to address the situation, especially against the Suns. Jake Carlisle kicked three goals and the combination with Joe Daniher proved dangerous. Down back, Michael Hurley looked right at home.   

Who looks good Daniher was impressive kicking two in both games, and Paul Chapman seemed to have plenty of life in his legs gathering a game-high 24 touches against the Power. But the standout performance was David Zaharakis’  43 disposals against the Suns, one that showed he might be ready to go to another level.   

Injury list 

Tom Bellchambers (ankle) 4-6 weeks

Alex Browne (knee)  Season

Michael Hibberd (hamstring)  TBC

Jake Melksham Suspended* Round 3

Jason Winderlich (hamstring) TBC

FREMANTLE

v West Coast, lost by 84 pts


v W Bulldogs, won by 28 pts

What they achieved If this wasn’t Fremantle and Ross Lyon steering the ship there might be cause for slight alarm – a heavy loss to the cross-town rival (albeit under-manned) and losing structurally-important recruit Scott Gumbleton for at least 12 weeks to a serious hamstring injury. But the Dockers know when they want to be winning, and they showed they had an extra gear in burning off the plucky Dogs in the final quarter on the road.

Who looks good How heartening was it to Aaron Sandilands get his hand on 47 hit-outs and a handful of intercept marks playing against the current All-Australian ruckman Will Minson. Nat Fyfe stood tall in the Eagles drubbing, while Matthew Pavlich kicked two goals and grabbed 11 marks in a vintage effort against the Dogs. Michael Walters also provided a spark. 

Injury list – provided by club

 
Kepler Bradley (knee) 2-3 weeks

 
Zac Clarke (knee) 2-3 weeks

 
Jonathon Griffin (knee)  TBC

 
Scott Gumbleton (hamstring)  TBC

 
Garrick Ibbotson (achilles)  2-3 weeks

 
Anthony Morabito (knee) TBC

 
Alex Silvagni (ankle)  Test

 
Nick Suban (suspended)  Round 2

GEELONG

v Collingwood, won by 2 pts

v Melbourne, won by 13 pts

What they achieved It was all good news siren to siren, where the Cats showed no reason to discount them contending yet again. They moved the ball beautifully against the Pies, in particular. But injury has hit the Cats as hard as any club, most notably Nathan Vardy’s season-ending knee injury at training. A hunt for a replacement to help Tom Hawkins is now on. Key players Allen Christensen, Steven Motlop and Joel Selwood have also had their injury troubles. Importantly, Hamish McIntosh got through unscathed.

Who looks good Josh Caddy has been a bull grinding his way through contests in both games and Mitch Duncan was a standout against Melbourne. Harry Taylor kicked two goals displaying his swingman-capabilities, while Steve Johnson, Jimmy Bartel and Corey Enright keep doing what they always do.

Injury list 

 
George Burbury (jaw) 6 weeks

 
Allen Christensen (back) 12 weeks

 
Shane Kersten (back) Test

 
Daniel Menzel (knee) Indefinite

 
Steven Motlop (knee) 5-7 weeks

 
Jordan Murdoch (back) Test

 
Joel Selwood (hamstring) TBC

 
Nathan Vardy (knee) Season

Gold Coast

v Essendon, won by 1 pt

v Brisbane, lost by 47 pts

What they achieved The Suns look to be building strong midfield depth to support Gary Ablett and rising star Jaeger O’Meara, with David Swallow and Michael Rischitelli showing promise that they could step up this year alongside Dion Prestia, Harley Bennell and others. Many of their best players names including Ablett sat out against the Lions, but  the ruck still looks the problem is was last year - with the Suns getting badly beaten in that area in both games.

Who looks good It didn’t take long for Jack Martin to increase the massive hype that already follows him. It was quality not quantity with his touches, mostly silky and leading to something good for the Suns. Brandon Matera also gave a look at the speed and smarts around goal that injury stopped him from contributing last year.

Injury list

 
Nathan Bock (leg) TBC

 
Jack Hutchins (back) TBC

 
Trent McKenzie (calf) Test

 
Dion Prestia (calf) Test

 
Zac Smith (knee) Indefinite

 
Seb Tape (hamstring) Test

 
Rory Thompson (hip) Test

Greater Western Sydney

v St Kilda, won by 68 points

v Sydney, lost by 40 points

What they achieved A win to start off, and the Giants will take that no matter what month it is. They never gave up against the Swans, and the rain of super goals against the Saints was exciting to watch and confidence-boosting for a young team. Jonathon Patton got through two hit-outs on return from his knee injury, and the mature-age recruits - Shane Mumford, Heath Shaw and co - all showed they could serve their purpose.  

Who looks good The Giants are flushed with emerging midfielders but insiders say Adam Treloar is the pick of the bunch and his 32 disposals against the Saints did nothing to dispel that. Dylan Shiel booted three super goals in a blistering performance in the same game, and they look to have found another in top draft pick Josh Kelly. Jeremy Cameron looks set to continue on where he left off last year.

Injury list 

 
Matt Buntine (concussion) Test

 
Tim Mohr (foot) 6 weeks

 
Andrew Phillips (hamstring) Test

 
Sam Schulz (shoulder) 10 weeks

Hawthorn

v Brisbane, won by 131 pts

v Nth Melbourne, won by 65 pts

What they achieved About everything you could as the reigning premier looking to re-mark your territory - two commanding wins with a host of different contributors and new faces creating even more pressure for spots. It is too early to say how much and in what ways Lance Franklin will be missed, but the Hawks had no trouble finding goals and moving the ball forward to its new structure of Jarryd Roughead and Jack Gunston, with David Hale also helping out. Dayle Garlett’s setback has been the only negative.  

Who looks good Liam Shiels has relished a greater role in the midfield, racking up 28 and 30 disposals in the two games, while Will Langford bobbed up with three goals playing on Jack Ziebell against the Roos. Gunston kicked five against the Lions and was super efficient, while and Cyril Rioli has been his old lively self.

Injury list

 
Jed Anderson (illness) 3 weeks

 
Brian Lake (suspended) Round 4

 
Cyril Rioli (suspended) Round 2

 
Ryan Schoenmakers (knee) 2-4 weeks

 
Brendan Whitecross (knee) Indefinite

Melbourne

v Richmond, won by 14 pts

v Geelong, won by 13 points

What they achieved Plenty. Firstly, they now have an on-field “brand” under Roos, and against the Tigers we saw the work done through the pre-season, an ability to retain possession and stop teams from mounting big scoring runs against them. The Demons had 183 more disposals than the Tigers and 94 more against the Cats. And they have not had either of Mitch Clark or Chris Dawes to kick to as a key forward yet. The additions of more experienced bodies to the midfield has already made the team more competitive in that area.   

Who looks good There was no greater crowd-lifting burst than the one Jay Kennedy-Harris produced against the Tigers, the pint-sized goal-sneak snagging three goals to launch the Demons to victory. Bernie Vince looks a new man, stacking up lots and lots of possessions, and same goes for Jack Trengove - fit, free and maybe ready to flourish.

Injury list

 
Mitch Clark (hamstring) 2-3 weeks

 
Chris Dawes (calf) Test

 
Colin Garland (ankle) 2-4 weeks

 
Cameron Pedersen (hamstring) 1 week

 
Aidan Riley* (leg) 6 weeks

 
Luke Tapscott (knee) 2 weeks

North Melbourne

v Carlton, lost by 7 pts

 v  Hawthorn, lost by 65 pts

What they achieved You can see the Roos are fit, the effect from the hardest pre-season campaign under Brad Scott. They came storming back in the last quarter against the Blues when they could have easily moved on to the next challenge, and they have had no problem getting their hands on the ball. The Majak Daw incident was ugly and one the club and player should not have to deal with. Widely tipped to shoot into the finals this year, the Roos have a healthy list save for captain David Swallow and key recruit Nick Dal Santo has fitted in perfectly and performed so the club is unlikely to hit the panic button.

Who looks good That midfielders like Jack Ziebell, Ben Cunnington and Ryan Bastinac put in solid efforts is an encouraging sign, for the Roos need those players to take the next step. Father-son Luke McDonald also showed promise, while Daniel Wells is in his prime and doesn’t appear to be wasting it.   

Injury list 

 
Tom Curran (foot)  Indefinite

 
Taylor Garner (hamstring) 6 weeks

 
Kieran Harper (ankle) 4 weeks

 
Andrew Swallow (achilles) 8-11 weeks

Port Adelaide

v Adelaide, lost by 60 pts

v Essendon, won by 25 points

What they achieved The Power never likes losing to Adelaide, NAB Challenge or not. Almost all of their leaders were out, which fitted nicely for those detractors who say the Power lack depth and are too young to back up their extraordinary revival in 2013. But Ken Hinkley would be heartened by the motivation in the group to redeem the result interstate against the Bombers. If the Power is to hold their position in the top eight, they need those who had standout seasons to maintain that level and, to that end, Justin Westhoff, Oliver Wines and Chad Wingard showed positive signs.

Who looks good Former Lion Jared Polec has had a big pre-season trying to impress his new club and it appears to have worked, doing so in both games. Robbie Gray could be ready to jump a level, and draft pick Jarmen Impey has speed and composure with the ball.

Injury list

 
Alipate Carlile (quad) Test

 
Jarrad Redden* (knee) 6-7 weeks

 
Jay Schulz  (foot) 1 week

 
Jackson Trengove (knee) 1 week

Richmond

v Melbourne, lost by 14 pts

v  Collingwood, won by 48 points

What they achieved Those wanting to draw too much from the loss against Melbourne would have then had a hard time reconciling the Tigers big win over the Pies. It matters little to Damien Hardwick, although what the coach does care about is the loss of key ruckman Ivan Maric, considering his spiritual value to the team and his workhorse effort in the ruck. The recruitment of Shaun Hampson has already been validated as a worthy back-up selection.

Who looks good Trent Cotchin looks free of the injury that kept his form just below his absolute best last year, which we know is elite. He had 34 disposals, 11 marks and four goals against the Pies.  There is nothing wrong with Brett Deledio and Dustin Martin, either, as they showed with flashes of brilliance in both matches. The absence of Jack Riewoldt allowed Ty Vickery to take centre stage in a different forward set up and he delivered with four goals against the Pies and three against the Demons.

Injury list 

 
Jake Batchelor (calf) 1 week

 
Matt Dea (ankle) 1-2 weeks

 
Ben Lennon (knee) 3-4 weeks

 
Ivan Maric (ankle) 6-8 weeks

 
Chris Newman (knee) 1-2 weeks

 
Jack Riewoldt (quad) Test

St Kilda

v Western Bulldogs, lost by 11 pts

v GWS, lost by 68 points

What they achieved On a list of things that could go wrong for the Saints pre-season, a morale-sapping loss to GWS and a serious injury to Jack Steven would have to be right near the top. The Bulldogs game looked like going south in a hurry when the Saints could not get their hands on the ball in the first quarter, but they responded to Alan Richardson’s first official address and fought back. For those inside, the GWS loss will have to be a case of forget and move on. But for the supporters, it might be a dose of the reality that faces the Saints in this re-build.

Who looks good Rookie Eli Templeton might be one reason for Saints supporters to come to the footy this year. His blond dreadlocks, soccer skills and attitude are the makings of a fan favourite, as he showed against the Dogs. More game time and responsibility might allow Shane Savage to become the player he wants to be.

Injury list

 
Sam Gilbert (foot) 6-7 weeks

 
Tom Lee(shoulder) Test

 
Terry Milera(foot) 2-3 weeks

 
Leigh Montagna (suspended) Round 2

 
Jack Steven (foot) 8-10 weeks

Sydney

v GWS, won by 40 pts

v West Coast, lost by 35 pts

What they achieved It is historically unwise to judge what the Swans might produce from March onwards based on anything they do in  February. Although from an off-field standpoint, the mystery seizure scare Lance Franklin endured must have been unsettling for everyone concerned. The club says he is fine, though, and will he will be ready to take his spot in the Swans’ new-look forward line - the exact make up of which will be intriguing with Franklin, Kurt Tippett, Sam Reid and Adam Goodes all in the mix. Rhyce Shaw marked his rapid return from a knee reconstruction by getting through two games. 

Who looks good Father-son Tom Mitchell is entering his third season this year and could be ready to play a more prominent role for the Swans. He kicked two goals and had 34 disposals against GWS. Heath Grundy is rock solid as ever, and Nick Malceski is moving fast and with great danger to the opposition off half back.

Injury list

 
Adam Goodes (knee) 6-8 weeks

 
George Hewett (knee) 1 week

 
Luke Parker (eye) TBC

 
Kurt Tippett (knee) 3-5 weeks

 
Tommy Walsh (hamstring) Indefinite

West Coast

v Fremantle, won by 84

v Sydney, won by 35

What they achieved Clubs with a new coach and whom feel they under-achieved the previous year often attack the pre-season series with vigour. So it was for the Eagles, and you get the feeling we were heading for a Hawthorn-West Coast grand final had this been a NAB Cup competition of years gone by. There seemed to be a game plan directive to lower the eyes and hit up short targets. And move the ball quickly. Scratching for healthy bodies last year, the Eagles might have selection dilemmas of a different kind heading into round one.

Who looks good Xavier Ellis thanked Adam Simpson for the chance to extend his career by picking up 21 disposals playing loose across half back before getting subbed out against the Dockers. Chris Masten also took his chance to run riot through the middle of the ground and kick goals, and the polish of Sharrod Wellingham must have also been encouraging.  

Injury list 

 
Tom Barrass (hip) indefinite

 
Patrick McGinnity (suspended) Round 2

 
Beau Waters (shoulder) TBC

Western Bulldogs

v St Kilda, won by 11 pts

v Fremantle, lost by 28 pts

What they achieved From a development point of view, the Fremantle loss in which the Dogs trailed by just a point at three quarter time might have been worth more than the win over St Kilda. The Dogs stars of the future began to blossom late last year and will continue to this year if the pre-season is any guide ; Tom Liberatore and Jack Macrae, especially. Shaun Higgins and Tom Williams got game time, Adam Cooney moved well, and you can see what Stewart Crameri will offer.  

Who looks good Liberatore could become an A-grader quicker than first thought, and Koby Stevens and Mitch Wallis seem to have settled into roles where they could expect to regularly contribute. Jake Stringer is not a key forward but he flies at the ball like one, while Luke Dahlhaus might have a new haircut, but he is as explosive as ever around goal.

Injury list 

 
Jarrad Grant (foot) 1-2 weeks

 
Ryan Griffen (back) test

 
Nathan Hrovat (cheekbone) 1-2 weeks

 
Robert Murphy (elbow) 3-4 weeks

 
Clay Smith (knee) TBC