North Melbourne captain Andrew Swallow and Gold Coast ruckman Zac Smith will make returns from serious injuries in round nine.
North Melbourne captain Andrew Swallow will make a long-awaited return from a ruptured Achilles in Saturday’s AFL clash at Etihad Stadium.
Swallow has not played in the AFL since round 18 last year, but has proved his fitness in the VFL and was included in the Kangaroos’ team to play Brisbane.
Kangaroos defender Nathan Grima is out due to a foot injury, while Daniel Wells also remains troubled by the same issue.
The cellar-dwelling Lions included Claye Beams, Jordan Lisle and Mitch Golby at the expense of Matt Maguire (suspended), Nick Robertson (omitted) and Sam Mayes (concussion).
Robin Nahas and Sam Wright were also promoted by North, with Michael Firrito and Brad McKenzie both dropped from the side that lost to Gold Coast by 43 points.
Suns ruckman Zac Smith was among five inclusions in an extended squad for Sunday’s match against St Kilda and will play his first AFL match since rupturing an anterior cruciate ligament in round eight last year.
Goalsneak Ben McGlynn will miss Sydney’s match against Essendon on Friday night at Etihad Stadium due to illness, with speedster Brandon Jack taking his place in their 22.
The Bombers regained ruckman Tom Bellchambers, who is yet to play this year due to pre-season ankle injury, and midfielder David Myers, who has been hamstrung since round five.
Martin Gleeson was dropped by Essendon, while Paul Chapman misses the game due to a one-match ban.
Melbourne’s hopes of downing Richmond in Saturday’s match at the MCG that will honour the late Tom Hafey were damaged by the enforced omissions of James Frawley (hamstring) and Shannon Byrnes (foot).
Max Gawn and Aidan Riley were given call-ups by the Demons.
Ben Lennon, Richmond’s first selection in last year’s draft, will make his AFL debut after being included alongside veteran midfielder Nathan Foley and defender Ben Griffiths.
Chris Newman is out due to a calf strain, while Aaron Edwards and Nathan Gordon were both dumped.
Fremantle key defender Zac Dawson will return from an ankle injury in his side’s crunch clash with Geelong in Perth on Saturday.
Tommy Sheridan was also promoted, with Clancee Pearce and Hayden Crozier both dropped by Dockers coach Ross Lyon.
Father-son draft selection Jed Bews will be the Cats’ first debutant of the season, while veteran Andrew Mackie is back after a hamstring injury.
George Burbury (groin) and Mathew Stokes (suspended) are out for the Cats.
Tom Nicholls and Kade Kolodjashnij, both sidelined with knee injuries, are Gold Coast’s only omissions for their match at Etihad Stadium against St Kilda.
The Saints added Terry Milera, Josh Saunders and Sam Dunell to an extended squad.