Lions ready for morale-boosted Suns

Brisbane must overcome the unique challenge of taking on a Gold Coast team coming off a win if they’re to keep their AFL finals hopes alive next week.

The Lions’ surge towards the top eight received a heavy blow in Saturday night’s heartbreaking 16.9 (105) to 14.8 (92) loss to St Kilda at the Gabba.

Now they will face a Gold Coast Suns outfit with the wind in their sails following an after-the-siren win against Richmond in Cairns on Saturday night.

NRL convert Karmichael Hunt was the hero for the Suns with his goal after the hooter delivering the battling Gold Coasters their maiden win of the 2012 season.

And Lions coach Michael Voss said all the pain and all of the heavy defeats inflicted on their Queensland rivals throughout 2012 would mean nothing in their derby match at the Gabba this Saturday.

“Whatever (form) they’ve had in the previous eight weeks, nine weeks, it is absolutely irrelevant,” he said.

“It’s what they have done in the last two or three weeks and their last two or three weeks have been OK.

“That’s how we treat them.

“Their guys are up and about and our guys are going all right too, so it will promise to be a very, very good battle.”

Voss, while devastated with the loss against finals contenders St Kilda in a tight arm-wrestle, said despite the result the signs were good in his young group.

“I certainly feel that it is a bit of a lost opportunity,” he said.

“But it’s also encouraging at the same time to see that these guys are bridging the gap.

“Some individuals … Elliot Yeo did some really nice things when he had the opportunity.

“Jack Crisp is going to continuously learn, so to be able to have a couple more guys that are coming in and showing something, I’m really pleased with where the group is heading.

“We’d just like to be sitting here with a win and getting a reward for effort.”

Lions midfielder Daniel Rich faces a nervous wait to see if he will be cited by the match review committee on Monday for his careless shove on opposite number Clint Jones in the loss.

Rich pushed Jones over the boundary line in the early exchanges with the St Kilda midfielder’s head banging heavily against the steel boundary fence.

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