When it comes to the preseason, it’s all about preparation. Making sure that you and your team are at optimal fitness, have a perfect understanding of your role, and have your pipes at their most prominent. I took a similar approach to preparing to watch this game, so after clubbing until 3am, I sat down with a hangover, a blue Powerade, and 20 nuggets from uber eats, and got to work.
4 Quarters of a preseason is long enough, and 6 quarters just about did me. I’m only going to bother covering the first 4, so if you’re reading this to learn about Geelong and Richmond’s VFL squads, I suggest you re-evaluate your life and turn away.
Pretty graphs will tell you one thing and one thing only. Dusty is back. The most dominant mid on the ground, with the most CBA attendances. Other interesting notes are:
- No CBAs for Bolton, who played primarily as a forward
- Nank/Soldo with an even split of ruck time – I expect this to be similar going forward
- Narkle only getting CBAs in the 3rd and 4th quarter as the kids started to have a go means I expect him to be out of the rotation going forward
When looking at the CBA combinations for the first three quarters, we saw that Richmond was very happy to just use the awesome foursome of Prestia, Dusty, Dow & Ross, with no preference as to which 3 appeared at the CBA. Geelong took the opposite route, being more indecisive than the AFL deciding how holding the ball should be interpreted this year.
- Danger and Guthrie were the most used combo, with a rotating third of Parfitt, Holmes, Selwood and Higgins depending on the quarter. I would expect that these two would team up as one of Geelong’s “CBA Combos”
Prestia & Dusty are Richmond’s two main midfielders, so the question is in the regular season who best fits alongside them? Dow and Ross played their part well, so do Cotchin/Graham join them? Or do they lead their own “combo” group of CBAs
It wouldn’t be a preseason fantasy write up without discussing each of the players in an unnecessary amount of detail – so here you go!
Notable absences: Trent Cotchin, Kane Lambert, Daniel Rioli, Jack Graham, Matthew Parker, RCD
Dustin Martin – $682k Mid/Fwd
Who else was I going to talk about first… this man looked INCREDIBLE when he played. Attending CBAs, getting plus 6s, Dusty did everything except kick a goal or lay multiple tackles (and lets be honest its preseason, who wants to tackle in a 3 hour game of footy). There are some of us that have been unfair to Dusty this preseason, and in a sea of underpriced forwards, he’s one that needs to be considered. Can you do it? With all the value around I’m not sure I can take him off my never again list, but with limited rookies I will certainly be exploring the options. I’ve been burnt before, but I’m ready to be hurt again by a top 3 highest scorer from the game.
Jayden Short – $783k Def
Speaking of the top scorers from today’s game, please meet Jayden short as the clear #1. Short likely went 130+, however if we go way back in the history books we can see he did the same thing in a preseason game last year… Don’t read too much into this score, but if you were keen on him before this match, he looked to have the role with no more Houli, and could be a perfect D2/D3 for this season. Vlastiun had more kickouts which was concerning, but his main target was Short who could get a cheap +6. Top 6 defender for sure.
Dion Prestia – $769k Mid
A forgotten man in draft, Prestia attended CBAs, and moved well around the ground – I would expect that he could go 90+ again, and should be a draft slider that you can pick up on the cheap.
Ross – $468k Mid
Looked very impressive in his time in the CBA’s, and covered ground well to take a few marks – with the other midprice options we have in Caldwell/Rowell I’m less tempted by Ross’ efforts, but another showing in the preseason game might just convince me to indulge.
Nankervis – $699k Ruck
The new captain was solid and won the ruck battle, but splitting the role with Soldo & Balta means he’s a draft only option for us. Kicked a nice goal when he played up forward and looked comfortable, could he get DPP?
Ivan Soldo – $393k Ruck
The other big man at the tigers, he was very impressive in his first game back in 18 months – kicked 2 goals and played well in the middle against the Stanley/ Ratugolea combo
Hugo Ralphsmith – $258k Mid/Fwd
Took a while to warm up, but his second quarter was outstanding – looked to have scored close to 40 points at half time, but didn’t feature much afterwards. If he plays round 1 he’s a great option at F6, as he was competitive across half-back and won a lot of contested possessions. Watch next week to see how rioli impacts his role.
Nick Vlastuin – $638k Def
Safe D5 pick in draft – kick ins and strong, reliable footy.
Thomson Dow – $322k mid/Fwd
A Dow getting CBAs? At this time of year? During this part of the season? In this part of the country? Localised entirely at GMHBA stadium?
Now that Dos has left the room to write another song, let’s talk about Dow’s actual role. Dow was in the CBAs and it was a great success for him to get there, however I don’t believe he would have scored more than 40 fantasy points. Not a +6 merchant, and with other tiger mids coming back, it’s a no from me.
Shai Bolton – $652k Mid/ Fwd
Livewire up forward, kicking three great goals. No CBAs and minimal work pushing up the ground means he’s destined to stay a forward in my eyes. Had a leg concern in the final 30 seconds of the 4th “quarter” but got back into the contest and should be fine
Robbie Tarrant – $506k Def
New Club, Same role – not fantasy relevant, but please come back to North Robbie, I miss you.
Tom Brown – $258k Def
Tom Brown Tom Brown
Unlikely to be best 22, or a fantasy relevant scorer, and researching his price to make this reference was not worth it.
Notable absences: Mitch Duncan, Jonathon Ceglar, Gryan Miers, Sam Menegola, Jack Henry, Gary Rohan, Toby Conway
Patrick Dangerfield – $728k Mid
Danger looked in great touch, attending a lot of CBAs and was terrific running up and down the ground and taking marks on the lead. Would have top scored for Geelong and gone close to 100, despite the limited game time. A real option for us to consider as an underpriced midfielder. He still has that time forward that I don’t love to see, but If Hawkins/ Cameron are fit then he shouldn’t need to be in the F50 as often as last year. Clearly Geelong’s game style last year wasn’t enough to win a flag, will there be long-term changes to Danger’s role as a result?
Max Holmes – $432k Mid/fwd
Did someone say 2nd year breakout? Had a lot of CBAs, and also spent a lot of time on the wing. If Duncan is out to start the season Holmes could find himself with a lot of the ball and given he’s in a contract year, he could increase his average by 20-30. One to target in keeper leagues.
Tom Stewart – $812k Def
Did what he needed to do, and then did a bit more. Took a terrific mark, and should have another season as a top 6 defender. Very safe option in defence, but I didn’t see anything to indicate he will outscore last season. If anything his team looked to be playing less ‘keepings off” football which might limit the +6s he gets from the 1000 switches Geelong makes a game.
Tyson Stengle – $298k Fwd
4 goals 3! What a return to the big(ish) leagues for Stengle who seemingly has locked down a spot until Chris Scott realises he is 23, not 32. Dahlhaus was barely sighted all game, so I would be very happy to take a punt on Stengle as a late round pick in draft. He’s cheap in classic too, and with our concerns around forwards there will be some people who jump at this effort and throw Stengle in there. I personally will stay far away from this role type – he’s not going to do this most weeks, and his scores will drop accordingly.
Zach Guthrie – $508k Def
An underrated Footballer, Zach performed well in this match – providing great dashing run off half back and taking the game on. Not classic relevant, but could be a breakout year of sorts in draft.
Zach Guthrie’s brother Cam – $922k Mid
As one incredibly inconsistent podcast dubbed him, the “Geelong Jesus” did not have a great game. Outplayed by his brother and while I do listen to holmesyheroes and don’t adjust my premiums based off their preseason games, based off today’s display I would be very concerned about his value if I had him in my team.
Sam De Koning – $190k Def/ Fwd
Not a great day for the birthday boy, as he gave away a couple of free kicks and probably had less than 10 touches. Not the solution for your D6/F6, but could be a slow burner with great DPP flexibility if there’s indication from the coaches that he’s locked down a spot (unlikely based off what I saw).
Anyway, that’s enough fantasy talk for one weekend! Leave a comment letting me know your thoughts on this match or on the review, or shoot me a message on Twitter! @obermullet