Firsts to drive Swans, Giants in AFL derby
More than just four points and Harbour City bragging rights will be on the line in Saturday's derby between Sydney and Greater Western Sydney at the SCG.
Significant firsts for both sides as well as Harbour City bragging rights are at stake for both Sydney clubs in their AFL derby at the SCG.
For the Swans the aim on Saturday is the most basic driver of all - a first win for the season after a 0-4 start - while Greater Western Sydney are chasing a first of a more historic nature after losing all four of their previous fixtures at the ground.
The form guide and the betting odds point to a Giants win, but there are reasons for Swans supporters to have some optimism.
Impact players Gary Rohan and Isaac Heeney will make their first appearances of the season and could provide extra forward options along with the returning Kurt Tippett, who will share ruck duties with Callum Sinclair.
Despite their unflattering results Sydney have been competitive in all of their games, without being able to produce a full four-quarter effort and their uncharacteristically low spot on the ladder is bound to add an extra element of hunger.
The Swans will field their sixth debutant of the season in 20-year-old key defender Lewis Melican while, at the other end of the experience scale, the Giants welcome back Steve Johnson who will make his 279th senior appearance.
Aside from former Swan Shane Mumford, 33-year-old Johnson is the only Giant to have played in a winning team at the SCG, achieving the feat twice during his days with Geelong.
Star Sydney forward Lance Franklin needs just three more goals to reach the 800 mark.
After starting the season with two four-goal hauls, Franklin went goalless against Collingwood before kicking two majors against West Coast..
A win on Saturday would lift the Giants 16 points clear of the Swans and put them well on the way to finishing ahead of the Swans for the first time in their six-season history.
The Swans will want to avoid getting into a shootout, as the Giants are averaging six goals a game more this season.
Sydney's on-field woes haven't affected their popularity, however, with the club on Friday announcing they had established a new all-time membership record of more than 56,000.
- ● Sale Pending For Exciting Kiwi Prospect
- ● Lees Confirms Plans For Le Romain
- ● Gold Coast Guineas Next For Guard Of Honour
- ● Added incentives for Sydney owners