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Jury still out on the Swans - Sheedy

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Michael Cowley

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Will the Swans murder the Crows?

From the old South Melbourne grounds for the Swans, Rohan Connolly lays down his tips for round six.

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THEY might be sitting undefeated in second spot on the ladder, but while he concedes it's been ''fantastic for AFL in Sydney'', Greater Western Sydney coach Kevin Sheedy is not yet convinced about the premiership credentials of the Swans.

The Swans have started with five straight wins, but Sheedy - who coached Essendon to an AFL record 20-game winning start to the 2000 season - believes we need to wait another 10 rounds before anyone starts taking TOO much notice of the ladder.

''In the end it's probably something that I wouldn't get over the top about,'' Sheedy said of the Swans' start. ''But they have done well and they have kept their team together - they have only had a very small number of injuries. They have recruited well, and you have to give credit in that area.

"They have a chance to build up for one more look before maybe one or two boys get a little bit older and may not be there" ... Kevin Sheedy on the Swans.

"They have a chance to build up for one more look before maybe one or two boys get a little bit older and may not be there" ... Kevin Sheedy on the Swans. Photo: Getty Images

''I think you won't be able to gauge [much] on that ladder until about round 15 or 16. Most people would be saying, 'Well, they played us so there's a gimme four points' … and we played West Coast, are they on top?

''If the Swans get a decent run of lady luck they are chance this year, they can get there. It's about winning premierships, and they have a chance to build up for one more look before maybe one or two boys get a little bit older and may not be there. You make your luck, and success is your choice, and in the end that's what they will be looking at, and this year could be the year with the good start.

''But first of all the Swans have got to get over us later in the year, and that's going to be a very, very dangerous match for them. We'll have about 15 games up our sleeves, and that's better than the none we had last time [they played in round one], and we weren't that over-embarrassing last time.

''We'll be getting three-quarters into the season [when they meet in round 14 at ANZ Stadium]. You never know, we just might beat them. By the time we play the Swans next time it will be a little bit different.''

Sheedy's team heads to Melbourne for the first time this week, and they could be without high-profile recruit Israel Folau, who is in doubt for the clash with Carlton.

The former NRL star has been suffering from a virus, and missed training yesterday. Sheedy said Folau was under a cloud this week.

Folau might not be the only big name missing from the match as Carlton expects to rest several players for the clash.

''They make decisions at their risk. They won't want to think they're going to get percentage at the rate they feel they might,'' Sheedy said of the Blues. ''We're bringing our losing margin down [each game], and we played three pretty good quarters last week, and won one of them.''

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