GWS Giants recruit Joel Patfull is providing invaluable inside information on his former club Brisbane Lions, as his current AFL side looks to rebound from a poor performance.
The Giants slumped to a 45-point away loss to the Western Bulldogs in what was only their second bad display of a strong campaign, which has gleaned six wins from nine matches.
Two-time Lions best and fairest Patfull, 30, has quickly proven to be an asset for the Giants, adding valuable experience to their backline.
Patfull played 182 games for the Lions before being traded to GWS late last year and will face his old club for the first time in Sydney on Sunday.
“I know throughout the week he was giving the boys a few tips on how to play certain mids and some of their small forwards and I’m sure it will help,” Giants forward James Stewart told AAP.
Lions midfield coach Simon Black, whose team plays GWS in Sydney for the first time, said Brisbane needed to slow down the fleet-footed Giants.
“I think they were down about 40-odd (contested possessions) against the Bulldogs, so they are going to come out very hungry in that regard,” Black said.
“If we can win that as a midfield it’s going to be very important and then scores from stoppages. The Giants are very strong at that as well.”
Stewart said the Giants were ready to make amends for last week, but stressed they wouldn’t be fooled by the Lions poor 2-7 start to the season.
“The last couple of weeks they’ve started to play some really good footy,” Stewart said.
“Although they’ve got quite a young side at the moment, you know when you are young and still learning the game early in your AFL career you are willing to take risks and take the game on early.
“So we’ll have to definitely bring our A game on Sunday and it’s also extremely important for us to bounce back after what was a disappointing week.”
GWS co-captain Phil Davis makes a timely return from suspension as another key defender Nick Haynes has been ruled out with a groin injury.
The Lions lengthy injury list includes captain Tom Rockliff, but vice-captain Pearce Hanley will play for the first time this season following hip surgery.
“If I do bring anything on the weekend it might not be much, but I’ll definitely bring my leadership and voice out there,” Hanley said.