A GUIDE TO THE AFL PRELIMINARY FINAL BETWEEN BRISBANE AND GEELONG
WHEN: Saturday, 7.40pm AEDT
WHERE: The Gabba
* Brisbane (H&A second, 14 wins, 3 losses). Prevailed at home over Richmond by 15 points in a qualifying final and rewarded with hosting rights for the prelim
* Geelong (H&A fourth, 12 wins, 5 losses). Suffered a 16-point qualifying final loss to Port Adelaide before thumping Collingwood by 68 points in a semi
* Overall: Brisbane Lions 15 wins, Geelong 20 wins, 0 draws
* In Finals: Brisbane Lions 1 win, Geelong 0 wins
* Last time: Round 6, 2020: Geelong 11.7 (73) bt Brisbane 6.10 (46) at the SCG
* Chris Fagan has turned the Lions around from cellar dwellers to premiership contenders. Brisbane went out in straight-sets last year but delivered Fagan's first finals win as head coach with a superb win over Richmond. This is his first preliminary final.
* Chris Scott led the Cats to a premiership in 2011 but since then has coached them in four preliminary finals - losing all four. Geelong comfortably avoided a straight-sets exit this year but will be desperate to end their grand final absence.
THE KEY DUELS
Harris Andrews (Brisbane) v Tom Hawkins (Geelong)
Brisbane's vice-captain plays with a maturity beyond his years and will need every ounce of it against the Coleman Medallist. Hawkins booted three goals on Andrews last time they played and is coming off four majors against Collingwood.
Lachie Neale (Brisbane) v Joel Selwood (Geelong)
Brownlow Medal favourite Neale is at the heart of everything good in Brisbane's engine room and it will take a concerted team effort from the Cats' midfield to lower his colours. Expect Geelong skipper and hard-nut Selwood to lead from the front in attempting to curtail Neale's influence.
Darcy Gardiner (Brisbane) v Patrick Dangerfield (Geelong)
Dangerfield put Collingwood to the sword with a starring semi-final role up forward and the mobile Gardiner shapes as the best bet to go with him. This is unlikely to be a permanent match-up, however, as the Cats may need Dangerfield's nous and explosiveness around the stoppages.
* Geelong are set to enter Saturday's game with 21 players who have preliminary final experience - Sam Simpson is the only Cat not to have featured in the game's penultimate week. Brisbane have just four - Grant Birchall, Lachie Neale, Charlie Cameron and Lincoln McCarthy - who all played in preliminary finals at other clubs.
* Brisbane by eight points