Where and when: MCG, Thursday March 28, 7.20pm AEDT
Last time they met: MCG, preliminary final, 2018: Richmond 8.10 (58) lost to Collingwood 15.7 (97)
The Collingwood train left a shell-shocked Richmond in its wake, with Mason Cox dominating up forward in a second-term burst that resulted in a 53-point lead. Richmond rallied on the back of Jack Riewoldt’s five goals, but it was too little, too late.
What it means for Richmond: Redemption. The Tigers were wounded after the Magpies overran them in the preliminary final. The two sides match up well, with Collingwood regularly causing Richmond trouble over the past few years.
What it means for Collingwood: The Magpies are under the pump after a sluggish seven-point loss to Geelong in round one. A big win over last year’s minor premiers would be a strong statement.
How Collingwood wins: Exploit Richmond’s second ruckman. Collingwood has the best midfield in the competition and will greatly benefit from Brodie Grundy going head-to-head with second-gamer Noah Balta.
The stat: Richmond star defender Alex Rance has missed two games since round nine, 2014. He is now expected to be sidelined for the year after tearing his right ACL last week.
The match-up: Jordan De Goey v Dylan Grimes
Grimes (ranked 210th overall in the Schick AFL Player Ratings) will be hurting after De Goey (90th) kicked four last time they met. With De Goey capable of turning a match on its head, Grimes is set for a big task once again.
It’s a big week for: Nick Vlastuin
It will be the first time we will have a look at life at Richmond without defensive general Rance. David Astbury’s role taking the No.1 forward (Mason Cox) isn’t expected to change, but Vlastuin may be forced to take greater responsibility.
Big call: After a quieter game by his lofty standards (23 disposals), expect Dayne Beams to dominate out of the middle in his second match back in the black and white and even kick two goals.
Mottsy’s Tip: Richmond by 15.
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