Harris Andrews faces a tough test in his return. Picture: Getty Images
Harris Andrews faces a tough test in his return. Picture: Getty Images

Key Lion and young Dog set for epic rematch

BRISBANE vice-captain Harris Andrews' timely return from suspension is set to pit the key defender in a mouth-watering return bout with Western Bulldogs young gun Aaron Naughton on Sunday.

Naughton's 3.2 effort from 15 disposals proved the difference when the two sides last met in Round 8 but his individual battle with Andrews still ranks among the season's best one-on-one contests.

Andrews produced a sublime first half to effectively shut Naughton out of the game before a free kick unshackled the rising Dog midway through the third quarter.

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His set shot conversion burst open the dam with Andrews struggling to match Naughton's physicality late in the game before finishing the game up forward.

Their likely match-up will be vital in determining whether Brisbane are flag contenders or pretenders and the Bulldogs will fancy their chances of spoiling Harris' comeback following their Round 19 demolition of Fremantle.

The Lions nevertheless remain favourites after last week's 27-point win over Hawthorn with former Bulldogs Marcus Adams set to start against his former club at The Gabba this weekend.

Fellow defender Alex Witherden will be closely monitored after picking up a calf injury against the Hawks but is hopeful of returning for the first of three consecutive home games for Brisbane.

Aaron Naughton was chief destroyer for Western Bulldogs in their Round 8 win over Brisbane. Picture: Scott Barbour/Getty Images
Aaron Naughton was chief destroyer for Western Bulldogs in their Round 8 win over Brisbane. Picture: Scott Barbour/Getty Images

With Gold Coast and Geelong awaiting the Lions after Sunday's clash, strategy coach Danny Daly says the side are building nicely and eager to extend their six-game streak in front of a healthy home crowd.

"It gives them a lot of belief, because I think out of those six, four have been on the road," Daly said.

"They're starting to get a lot more belief in how we're going and their own individual performances but more importantly how we're going as a team."

News Corp Australia


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