Ok community I am 100% sure this is my round one team! Ok sorry that’s a lie. There is no way I can guarantee that statement, as I know myself I have so many selection issues that I need more time on.
There are at least half a dozen players who could make their way into my team. However I don’t envisage my strategy changing all too much, with the one possible exception being in the ruck department.
This team is a little mix and match when it comes to strategy. The backline is a full “Guns and Rookies” as I just haven’t been happy with any of the midprice options (including Heppell). Forward line is a “Guns and Midprice” strategy (pretty sure I just made that term up %#?), but with such a lack of quality rookies I feel my hands are tied up forward. Rucks again I have gone with a “Guns and Rookies” approach with a rookie starting at “R2”. Midfield I have then gone for a “Midpricer strategy” or as Jock would put it a 3 – 3 – 2 formation. 3 Super Elites, 3 Midpricers and 2 starting rookies.
This line is a little boring, as I don’t think there are any big surprises. I have called Hartlett a Premium even though he is under 500k but I feel he is premium priced for a defender. His is the only spot I am undecided on at the minute, with Duffield, Newman and even Yarran all a chance for this spot. I have gone with Hamish because I like the look of the overall Port Midfield and see this as an area where Port will improve the most in 2013. This improvement might not be seen in results, as Ports other lines are really weak but I think there midfield will win their fair share of contested ball to allow Hartlett to be damaging on the outside. I am picking him on my prediction of finishing the year as the third top scoring defender. An injury concern but has just had such a quality preseason to sneak ahead of the Duff-man at this stage.
People might be surprised with my selection of three starting rookies, and it wasn’t a decision made lightly. However it was never my intention to spend big in the defense this year as I am confident that I will be able to pick up a few premium defenders through the course of the year for better value than their starting price. The fact that the rookies in the back line look so good is just an added bonus. We all know about Goodes, but Stevenson is my pick of the bunch. I expect him to start the year slow but watch as Port use him more as a re bounder as the year goes on. Has amazing foot skills and has been flawless in the NAB cup. He has been running at 100%, 100%, 70% and 90% efficiency in his matches this preseason.
I trust you would have read a few of my articles over the preseason, and if so you won’t be surprised with the first three names on my team sheet. These men have been locked away all preseason and I am confident that they will finish the year as the top three Supercoach players. The only thing that has me slightly worried now is that Mike Sheahan has named them 1, 2 and 3 also. Now I know Mike’s a big fan of Jock Reynolds and will probably be reading this but sorry mate, it’s not too often you get it right. Buddy last year. I’ll say no more.
The rookies pick themselves really, with the only controversial decision the ommision of Kane Mitchell and the inclusion of his teammate Ollie Wines. This is a point of difference call and one I am confident of paying dividends. I am aware that Mitchell is the more popular of the two because of his price and his early NAB cup (AFL Fantasy) form. However for me Wines will outscore Mitchell in Supercoach because he will lay more tackles, get more contested footy and will be more efficient with his use of the Pill. Mitchell could very well end up playing a tagging role also.
The middle three starting players are where my midfield gets a little different and where I am expecting a few WTF’s from the community. I have called Shuey a midpricer even though he is priced at $553k, but for me this a midpricer in the midfield as he doesn’t hold elite or super elite status. I have picked him on the assumption he can jump to that next level in 2013 a little like Cotchin did in 2012. Fyfe is an absolute gun and will be elite if he can stay on the park. A risk I am willing to take because the reward is just that big. Hannebery is arguably my biggest call throughout my entire team. I have picked him for two reasons. One, because he is a clear POD and two, I have been so impressed with him this preseason. He only played ¾ last weekend but had more disposals than any other player before he came off. Last season he averaged 23.8 disposals a game. In the two full NAB games he played he had 30 form 84% Time on Ground (ToG) against the Staints and 24 from 63% ToG against the Suns. Last season only 33% of his possessions were contested but that has increased to 39% during the NAB.
With some of the swans older brigade spending less time in the centre Hannebery is set to benefit from more time in the guts and around the packs, instead of out on the wing as he was in 2012. Had a great finals series, a solid preseason and appears to be brimming with confidence. I would love to have the chance to watch him one more time but because the stupid AFL decided to have a split first round I won’t be able to get the chance. It might be for that reason he may slip out of my team. My other option here might be to drop him down to Maloney and upgrade Shuey to Kennedy or Murphy.
Cox will average 120 while Naitanui is out of the team. Locked away as one of the easiest selections I have made this year. The rest of the ruck depends on Brad Scott and Todd Goldstein and that round one North Melbourne team sheet. If Currie gets named ahead of Goldstein then he starts, if they are both named or just Goldstein then he doesn’t. Will be very interested to see Leuenberger and Vardy this weekend. They were my one, two at one stage during the preseason.
The “Guns and Midpricer” strategy. It even sounds funny.
I know a lot of people are putting Macaffer on their field but I just haven’t seen enough from him this preseason. In fact I’m not sure he has shown Buckley enough either and is no guarantee of being in Collingwoods first round team. Will be interested to see the panic in all those coaches who have him starting if that does happen. He has got one more game against the cats to impress but right now it’s a bench spot only. Varcoe and Kennedy will be inconsistent but both will average over 80 and will look to upgrade both if/when they get a couple of big games into their rolling average midyear.
The premiums all look in good nick this preseason with Ryder and Rockliff traditionally big starters expecting some big scores from the pair early. Zorko has had his first preseason and we all seen what he did last year without one. Martin is a known unknown if that makes any sense. We all know he is class but we don’t know if he he going to take his game to that next level. I taking the punt he will.
Well community that’s the team as it stood before this weekend’s games. What it looks like come round one is as much an unknown as number of wildlife living in Patrick Karnezis hair.
Stay Tuned …