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Match Preview: Round 9 v Hawks

This match pits one team trying to jump into the top four against another trying to get its first win, but the main focus lies elsewhere – with Luke Hodge.

After a decorated career at Hawthorn, most of which he played under the guidance of Alastair Clarkson, Hodge made the move north after initially deciding to retire at the end of last season.

Now he faces the Hawks for the first time at his new home ground.

Hodge will be desperate to help Brisbane to its first win for 2018, something that looks just around the corner with a string of narrow losses in the opening eight rounds.

Match-ups with Tom Mitchell and Dayne Zorko will be interesting, as will the level of chat between Hodge and his former teammates. 

Where and When:
The Gabba, Sunday, May 20, 3.20pm AEST

Last Five Meetings
R8, 2017, Hawthorn 17.11 (113) d Brisbane Lions 11.9 (75) at University of Tasmania Stadium
R10, 2016, Hawthorn 21.9 (135) d Brisbane Lions 13.9 (87) at the Gabba
R22, 2015, Hawthorn 21.8 (134) d Brisbane Lions 9.8 (62) at University of Tasmania Stadium
R1, 2014, Hawthorn 21.13 (139) d Brisbane Lions 13.13 (91) at University of Tasmania Stadium
R14, 2013, Hawthorn 21.17 (143) d Brisbane Lions 12.13 (85) at University of Tasmania Stadium

The Five Points

1. Last time the two teams met, Tom Mitchell was the difference for the Hawks with 36 disposals, nine tackles, three inside 50s and six clearances. Dayne Zorko was the Lions' best with 31 touches and 11 tackles.

2. Following back-to-back four-goal hauls, Dayne Zorko has moved to a career-high fifth overall in the AFL Player Ratings. He sits behind just Dustin Martin, Patrick Dangerfield, Lance Franklin and Scott Pendlebury.

3. This is a rare Gabba contest between the clubs; just the second visit for Hawthorn since 2008.

4. The Lions have played the Hawks 17 times at the Gabba, where they've won 11 games to six.

5. Hawthorn has won the last eight contests against Brisbane.

It's a big week for... Luke Hodge

Could it be anyone else but Luke Hodge?

After 15 seasons, 305 games, four premierships – three as captain – and two Norm Smith Medals with the brown and gold, Hodge plays his former team for the first time.

Even with all that experience, there'd have to be some level of anxiety for the 33-year-old.


The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs