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Hot Topics: Bouncing back on the big stage

Sydney Swans Media  April 20, 2017 10:18 AM

The midfield battle will set to go a long way to deciding Saturday night's match.

The midfield battle will set to go a long way to deciding Saturday night's match.

Sydney Derby
Sydney Derby XII will take place under the SCG lights on Saturday night.

It is the 12th time these sides have faced off in a Derby since the introduction of Greater Western Sydney into the competition in 2012.

The Sydney Swans hold the upper hand having won eight of the contests but it has been swayed the way of the Giants in more recent times.

The rivalry has built and neither side wants or can afford to lose.

Who will come out on top holding up the White Ribbon Cup? Only time will tell.

Brett Kirk Medal
Josh Kennedy and Kieren Jack had a knack for lifting in the Sydney Derby with the pair leading the way when it comes to past winners of the Brett Kirk Medal.

The medal, awarded for the best player on the ground in each Sydney Derby, has been taken out by Jack three times and Kennedy twice.

Luke Parker and Dan Hannebery are other current Swans to have won the medal and all of the above mentioned will be looking to fire in the quest for their first win of the season.

Just two Giants, Heath Shaw and Callan Ward, have won the award that has previously always been dominated by those in the red and white.

Who will rise to the big stage and lead their team over the line on Saturday night?

Swans regain experience

After being cruelled by injury to quality players over the first month of the season the Swans are set to regain some senior players for Saturday night’s Derby.

Kurt Tippett, Isaac Heeney, Gary Rohan and Jarrad McVeigh are all available for selection with the match committee to decide who plays.

Tippett seems the most likely to return given he has only missed a fortnight of football and given the injury blow to big man Sam Naismith during the week.

Tom Papley returned to the senior side for last Thursday’s match against West Coast as the Swans slowly regain regular first 22 players.

The coaching staff will hope the quality and experience of the returning players will help the Swans get their first four points of the season at the SCG.

Getting on the board
It has been a tough start to the season for the Swans as they have stooped to 0-4 for the first time since 1993.

It’s unfamiliar territory for coach John Longmire and his current crop of players who only last year played in the Grand Final.

A rise in consistency from senior players along with the return of up to four injured stars is expected to assist the Swans in their search for their first win of the season.

The coach and players still extremely optimistic about their prospects in 2017.

“We haven’t lost confidence at all in the standard of football that we can play,” Midfielder Luke Parker said earlier this week.