Venue: Etihad Stadium at 1:10pm AEST
LAST FIVE MEETINGS
R22, 2016, Western Bulldogs 14.9 (93) d Essendon 7.11 (53) at Etihad
R18, 2015, Western Bulldogs 19.13 (127) d Essendon 5.10 (40) at Etihad
R18, 2014, Essendon 15.11 (101) d Western Bulldogs 14.10 (94) at Etihad
RR7, 2014, Essendon 10.13 (73) d Western Bulldogs 9.11 (65) at Etihad
R16, 2013, Essendon 18.13 (121) d Western Bulldogs 14.6 (90) at Etihad
Game notes: In arguably the match of the round, an in-form Essendon will be out to enhance its finals credentials while putting a huge dent in the Bulldogs’ premiership defence. With Bomber twin towers Joe Daniher and Cale Hooker looming large, the loss of All Australian defender Dale Morris to a broken arm couldn’t have come at a worse time for the Dogs, and young backmen Zaine Cordy and Lewis Young will face the sternest tests of their short careers. The Dons midfield has really got going in recent weeks, with skipper Dyson Heppell, young gun Zach Merrett and veteran Jobe Watson set for showdown with the handball-happy Dogs’ on-ball division lead by superstar Marcus Bontempelli. With the teams on nine wins apiece, this highly-anticipated encounter should reveal how well both sides are travelling just over a month out from September.
Hutta’s Tip: Bulldogs by 20 points
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