The Demons have 18 straight losses at Etihad ahead of their meeting with Brisbane Lions though ruck Mark Jamar insists there’s no Demon hoodoo.
A meeting of two mates in the middle will go a long way to deciding the destination of the AFL’s least wanted prize – the wooden spoon.
Melbourne ruckman Mark Jamar and his former teammate Stefan Martin will re-unite in the ruck in Sunday’s meeting between the Demons and Brisbane.
Jamar and Martin go back a long way, even playing in the VFL for Sandringham together before Martin was drafted to the Demons.
So when Martin was interviewed on radio this week, Jamar couldn’t help but pull over and stir the pot.
“He came on in the car, so I had to send him a few texts,” he said.
“Early in the week it’s alright, but it’s going to be all business come Sunday.”
As it should be – the two sides are separated by a single win at the bottom of the table and both know a win here will go a long way to avoiding last place.
Both men are key to their side’s chances.
Martin has been plagued by injury since moving to the Lions in 2012, he’s now enjoying his best spell for his second club.
Jamar too had a slow start has been influential in three wins and drove the Demons in recent near misses against the Bulldogs and Power.
The Demons’ longest serving player is another man rejuvenated by coach Paul Roos’ arrival, and just one of four to remember their last win at Etihad.
Much has been made of Melbourne’s 18 straight losses at Melbourne’s second stadium, though Jamar insists it’s not even a discussion amongst the players,
“Those games were split over so many seasons and we’ve had a few different coaches and few different set-ups over that time,” he said.
He’s not wrong.
Since Mark Riley led the Demons to that victory, Dean Bailey, Todd Viney, Mark Neeld and Neil Craig and now Roos have coached the club.
But a settled Melbourne side are well-placed to end that hoodoo on Sunday afternoon, with just one change made from the team that early beat Port Adelaide.
Jack Grimes’ hamstring strain has necessitated the only change between the two teams, with Dean Terlich replacing the co-captain.
Fresh from their QClash demolition job, the Lions were also handed a slice of good news this week with young guns Darcy Gardiner and Lewy Taylor agreeing contract extensions to the end of 2016.