With Joel Selwood expected to poll now in all of the first three rounds, it would appear as though his Brownlow battle has been reignited once more with Gary Ablett, after missing out on the coveted medal only narrowly last season.
But it isn’t going to be an easy passage to this year’s Brownlow, with Ablett certain to poll maximum votes for his standout performance in the Suns’ win over Brisbane.
At the conclusion of round three, both players have jumped to the top of the BFGN Brownlow leaderboard to sit neck-and-neck alongside each other.
Hawthorn vs. Fremantle
The Grand Final rematch was billed to be a blockbuster affair, but it was anything but, with Hawthorn trampling a depleted Fremantle.
Isaac Smith helped kick off the onslaught for the Hawks to sit among their very best players on the night, collecting 30 disposals, 12 marks, four rebound 50s, four inside 50s and 3.1.
Sam Mitchell rebounded from injury with some blistering form that saw him finish with 36 disposals (11 contested), five marks, five clearances, four tackles, six one-percenters and three inside 50s.
To round off the total domination by Hawthorn, Jordan Lewis was omnipresent after a relatively quiet game last week, racking up 37 disposals (11 contested), three marks, four hitouts and 10 clearances.
3. I. Smith
2. S. Mitchell
1. J. Lewis
Others in calculations: B. Hill, L. Breust.
Western Bulldogs vs. Richmond
With a game-high 12 clearances, it was the inside work that impressed most with Tom Liberatore in the Bulldogs’ surprise win, as he went on to also finish with 24 disposals (14 contested), four marks and 12 tackles.
Richmond captain Trent Cotchin by no means disgraced himself, despite the unexpected loss to the Dogs, and should be vying for votes. He finished with 28 disposals (19 contested), five marks, 11 clearances, four tackles, five inside 50s and 1.2.
Whilst he could well be given the three Brownlow votes on the night, there’s no doubting that at the very least Jackson Macrae will get a vote for his overall impressive performance. Playing a well-rounded game through the middle, and drifting into defence and up forward, Macrae picked up 30 disposals, nine marks, six tackles, three inside 50s and 1.1.
3. T. Liberatore
2. T. Cotchin
1. J. Macrae
Others in calculations: M. Boyd.
Adelaide vs. Sydney
Whilst many would dub the match the ‘Buddy Show’, it was his teammate Luke Parker who stole the show with 26 disposals (11 contested), six marks, nine clearances, three tackles, four inside 50s and four goals.
With 4.2 and a game consisting of 20 disposals (10 contested), six marks, and six inside 50s, Lance Franklin had a day out in what would arguably be his most impressive performance in Swans colours.
Working in tandem with Parker in the middle to great effect, Josh Kennedy also shone with 28 disposals (18 contested), eight clearances and five tackles.
3. L. Parker
2. L. Franklin
1. J. Kennedy
Others in calculations: R. Sloane.
Gold Coast vs. Brisbane
Not much else can be said about the quality of Gary Ablett and his love of big games, and his was none bigger than in the seventh QClash. Putting in another scintillating performance, ‘Gazza’ racked up 38 disposals (19 contested), six clearances, 10 tackles, six inside 50s and three goals. Lock in the three votes.
Tom Rockliff was the best performed for Brisbane, finishing with 35 disposals (14 contested), 11 marks, five clearances, five tackles, five inside 50s and three goals.
Meanwhile, Dion Prestia continues his impressive start to the season with 32 disposals (19 contested), nine clearances, five tackles and four inside 50s.
3. G. Ablett
2. T. Rockliff
1. D. Prestia
Others in calculations: S. Day, D. Swallow, J. O’Meara.
West Coast vs. St Kilda
Matthew Priddis led from the front and was a revelation in the middle for West Coast, collecting 28 disposals (15 contested), five clearances, five tackles and a goal.
In a game in which he equalled Glen Jakovich’s club games record of 276 for West Coast, Dean Cox celebrated in style with 15 disposals, six marks, 34 hitouts, four rebound 50s, four tackles, three inside 50s and a victory-sealing goal.
For St Kilda, Luke Dunstan put in a prominent performance consisting of 29 disposals (15 contested), four marks, seven clearances, five tackles and two goals.
3. M. Priddis
2. D. Cox
1. L. Dunstan
Others in calculations: L. Montagna, L. Shuey.
Collingwood vs. Geelong
With yet another ‘captain-like’ performance, Joel Selwood led his side to a hard fought victory. He finished with 30 disposals (15 contested), eight clearances and 11 tackles.
Jamie Elliott helped to provide the spark for Collingwood when the game was on the line, kicking five goals – three of which came in the last quarter.
Also for Geelong, Mitch Duncan was pivotal in his sides win, collecting 30 disposals (12 contested), six marks, five rebound 50s and three inside 50s.
3. J. Selwood
2. J. Elliott
1. M. Duncan
Others in calculations: M. Stokes, T. Hawkins, S. Sidebottom, S. Pendlebury.
GWS vs. Melbourne
Adam Treloar led the way for the Giants as they coasted to victory against a hapless Melbourne outfit. Accumulating 33 disposals (21 contested), and 11 clearances, he also laid a whopping 14 tackles, to go with five inside 50s and 1.3.
Shane Mumford did as he pleased against an inexperienced Melbourne ruck setup, collecting 60 hitouts along with 10 disposals, nine tackles and a goal.
Callan Ward was another highlight for GWS, finishing with 26 disposals (13 contested), seven clearances, 11 tackles and five inside 50s.
3. A. Treloar
2. S. Mumford
1. C. Ward
Others in calculations: S. Coniglio.
North Melbourne vs. Port Adelaide
It was an arm wrestle right to the end, and it was the ongoing workman-like game by Ben Cunnington that helped take North Melbourne to victory. He finished with 30 disposals (19 contested), six marks, nine clearances, seven tackles and six inside 50s.
Ex-Saint Nick Dal Santo also had a major hand in his new side’s win, lifting in the final term to finish with 30 disposals, five marks, four clearances, five tackles, four inside 50s and a goal.
Veteran Brent Harvey is also among those vying for votes with 23 disposals, four marks and 3.2.
3. B. Cunnington
2. N. Dal Santo
1. B. Harvey
Others in calculations: H. Hartlett.
Essendon vs. Carlton
Heath Hocking was a standout for Essendon, finishing with 28 disposals (12 contested), eight marks, five clearances, three tackles, six inside 50s and a goal.
In another blistering performance for his adoptive club, Paul Chapman punished Carlton with 23 disposals, 11 marks, three tackles and 4.3.
Jackson Merrett also shone with a career-high 35-disposal (13 contested) game that also featured 10 marks, five clearances, three tackles and eight inside 50s.
3. H. Hocking
2. P. Chapman
1. J. Merrett
Others in calculations: D. Heppell, B. Goddard.
BFGN Brownlow Leaderboard:
7 – J. Selwood
6 – G. Ablett
5 – A. Sandilands
5 – N. Riewoldt
5 – A. Treloar
4 – J. Watson
4 – N. Dal Santo
4 – C. Ward
4 – B. Harvey
4 – S. Johnson