GWS Giants co-captain Callan Ward is looking for another ten per cent of winning desire from his side on Sunday to help overcome a Sydney midfield he rates as the best in the AFL.
It will be the first sellout AFL crowd at Spotless Stadium, with over 21,000 people expected to attend, which would top the existing record of 19,507 set for the corresponding fixture last year.
They are set to witness a ferocious midfield battle between the second-placed Swans and the sixth-placed Giants, who have won just one of the nine previous derbies.
The Swans go into the game on the back of three wins, while the Giants are coming off back-to-back away losses.
“We need to go out there and really want to win and the last couple of weeks we’ve probably lost that a little bit, probably by 10 per cent,” Ward said.
“Coming up against a team like the Swans, I personally think they are the best midfield in the comp, they’ve got so many guys who play through there.
“Contested ball is probably their number one mantra, it has been for ten years and that’s probably what they are doing the best at the moment is contest the ball.”
For their part, the Swans recognise the Giants have markedly improved their inside game with Ward and Stephen Coniglio leading the way.
“GWS have really stepped up in their inside work, but they have got some great outside users if you allow them space,” Swans forward coach Brett Kirk said.
“We’ve got to make sure we take care with the ball at the source and deny them the ball on the outside, because they can be really dangerous if they get their run and carry game going.”
The Giants’ midfield stocks will be boosted by the return from injury of Ryan Griffen while Sam Reid plays his first senior game since July 2013, with Jack Steele and Adam Tomlinson dropping out.
Sydney have recalled rested young defender Callum Mills in place of concussed forward George Hewett.
The best on ground will receive the Brett Kirk Medal.