VFL preview: The AFL players to watch in Round 1
VFL preview: The AFL players to watch in Round 1

The players vying for senior spots in first VFL round

Sydney Stack is one of many big names looking to push their case for selection when he makes his long-awaited return to football in the VFL season opener tomorrow.

The Richmond youngster only returned to the club in late March due to breaching Western Australia's strict quarantine rules, which saw him spend three weeks behind bars.

Stack, along with Callum Coleman-Jones served respective ten-game suspensions for breaching the AFL's COVID-19 protocols last season.

 

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Both will see action in the Tigers clash with St Kilda affiliate Sandringham at Punt Rd - kicking off the newly expanded VFL competition.

Eyes will also be on No.1 draft pick Jamarra Ugle-Hagan when he lines-up in Footscray's clash with Gold Coast on Saturday morning.

Ugle-Hagan has turned heads in VFL practise matches as he continues to press his claim for a debut while reigning Bulldogs leading goal-kicker Mitch Wallis will again line-up in the twos after being dropped a fortnight ago.

Ben Brown and Sam Weideman will ramp up their respective returns when they line-up for the Casey Demons on Sunday against Box Hill.

The key forward duo played their first games since returning from injury last week as the former builds towards his Melbourne debut.

Josh Jenkins kicked three goals in Geelong's VFL practise game last weekend and will seek to impress yet again in Sunday's curtain-raiser against North Melbourne.

The 31-year-old has only featured twice for the Cats since joining from Adelaide at the end of 2019 and was dropped after round one.

 

Western Bulldogs fans will be watching Jamarra Ugle-Hagan with interest. Picture: Michael Klein
Western Bulldogs fans will be watching Jamarra Ugle-Hagan with interest. Picture: Michael Klein

 

Collingwood youngsters Oliver Henry and Will Kelly will push their claims to help remedy the Magpies struggling forward line with a strong showing against Werribee.

GWS recruit Jesse Hogan will line-up in his second game back from a quad injury in the VFL's version of the Battle of the Bridge on Saturday.

The 26-year-old key forward will be looking to resurrect his career at his third club after being traded to the Giants from Fremantle.

 

 

VFL ROUND ONE

FRIDAY

Richmond v Sandringham, Swinburne Centre, 12.00pm

Frankston v Coburg, Skybus Stadium, 7.30pm

SATURDAY

Footscray v Gold Coast, VU Whitten Oval, 11:20am

Sydney v GWS, Tramway Oval, 12.00pm

Aspley v Port Melbourne, Graham Road, 1.00pm

Brisbane Lions v Essendon, Southpines Sporting Complex, 1.30pm

Carlton v Southport, IKON Park, 2.00pm

Werribee v Collingwood, Avalon Airport Oval, 2.30pm

SUNDAY

Box Hill Hawks v Casey Demons, Box Hill City Oval, 12.05pm

Geelong v North Melbourne, GMHBA Stadium, 1.00pm

Northern Bullants v Williamstown, Preston City Oval, 1.00pm

 

Jesse Hogan will pull on the Giants guernsey against Sydney’s reserves this weekend. Picture: Jonathan Ng
Jesse Hogan will pull on the Giants guernsey against Sydney’s reserves this weekend. Picture: Jonathan Ng

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Originally published as The players vying for senior spots in first VFL round