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AFLW: Round 4, 2019 Preview

The opposition

Coach: Mark Stinear
Co-captains: Elise O'Dea and Shelley Scott
Last year's finish: Third
2018 Best and Fairest: Daisy Pearce

A host of stars will be on display when the North Melbourne Tasmanian Kangaroos face Melbourne in their first Victorian game of the season.

A total of eight players from the two outfits were named in the Round 3 AFLW Team of the Week, meaning a plethora of talent will be show at Casey Fields.

The Demons have rebounded impressively after losing their season-opener against Fremantle by just four points, defeating Collingwood and Brisbane in consecutive games.

Sitting atop of the ladder in Conference A, the Roos plan on continuing their impressive start, having booted an aggregate score of 153 points since Round 1, the second-highest in the competition.

Key match-ups

The Demons have been relentless in their forward pressure, playing a huge factor in getting their season back on track.

This in part is due to the impact fruitful pairing Eden Zanker and Aliesha Newman have had in attack.

Zanker’s contributions were recognised with a Rising Star nomination for Round 3, in conjunction with North’s Courteney Munn, who will miss the game through injury.

Impact defender Jess Trend will likely line up against the promising forward, who tallied 11 disposals and booted a goal in Melbourne’s 39-point win over Brisbane.

Meanwhile, North ball magnet Jess Duffin will challenge Aliesha Newman inside the opposing 50.

After securing the ruck role in the most recent Team of the Week, Lauren Pearce will likely offer resistance to rotating ruck/forward Emma King on Sunday afternoon.

Pearce secured a round-high nine clearances last week, validating her importance to Melbourne’s engine room with a further 15 hit-outs and 21 disposals.

King has kicked an imposing four goals in three games, suggesting that another forward rotation could be on the card with menacing tall, Kate Gillespie-Jones assisting with ruck duties.

Who to look out for

After successfully challenging a potential two-game suspension, Melbourne forward Tegan Cunningham will have plans of adding to her two goals for her 2019 campaign.

Dynamic cross-code rookie Beth Lynch makes her AFLW debut in the royal blue and white having rehabbed a torn quad sustained during her pre-season preparations.

Judging off her earlier performance against the Demons in January’s practice match at the same venue, expect the 21-year-old to take on players early.

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs