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Lions to give Dusty tag the brush-off and back their system

The Brisbane Lions' won't tag Richmond superstar Dustin Martin on Sunday, with Chris Fagan saying the Lions will attempt to unseat the Tigers for the first time in 10 years by backing their own midfield system. 

Martin has returned to his 2017 Brownlow Medal form in recent weeks, demolishing West Coast star Elliot Yeo last Sunday in Richmond's gripping six-point win.

Fagan said Brisbane tagging an opponent came at a cost, and it wasn't one he was prepared to pay to start the game. 

"You're giving up some hunt yourself wandering around worrying about what he's doing," Fagan said.

"All teams approach him differently, some do (tag), some don't, with varying degrees of success.

"We'll just back our own system in. 

"We might just go head to head to start with."

Brisbane last beat Richmond in 2009, having lost the past 12 matches between the clubs, including kicking just two goals in last year's 93-point walloping at the MCG. 

On that day, Martin played forward, kicking six goals. 

The Lions have no obvious midfield match-up, with young tyro Jarrod Berry the most suited.

Mitch Robinson has the aggression and explosion, but moving him onball means taking him away from the wing, a place he has called home in 2019.

"He's powerful, he breaks away from congestion and takes ground really quickly," Fagan said of Martin. 

"He's a great player, a hard bloke to match-up on." 

If Brisbane wins it will claim the minor premiership, while a loss leaves it vulnerable of dropping as low as fourth. 

"It's a big one," Fagan said.

"It's great preparation for finals. 

"We face up to our history and our record, it's not something we sweep under the carpet.

"If you want to take on these teams and beat these teams, you've got to look that challenge fair in the eyes.

"As we've done with everyone of those, whatever they're called, hoodoos - teams have been too good for us - we just weigh it up and have another crack.

"It's just another opportunity."

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