THE Giants were slammed for a horror display in the first week of the finals when Adelaide handed them a football lesson but they can redeem themselves against West Coast tonight.
The Crows thumped GWS by six goals and the pressure’s on the AFL’s newest club to show its young guns can deliver a maiden flag.
West Coast will still be on a high after last week’s thrilling win over Port Adelaide. Luke Shuey kicked a goal after the siren in extra time to keep the Eagles’ season alive and fans will be hoping to see similar heroics from their team again on Saturday.
There might not be many people in the crowd but the GWS Giants have made a tidy start at their home ground in tonight’s elimination semi-final.
The Giants lead 5.4 (34) to 3.0 (18) at quarter time after settling first in a game that featured some incredible bloopers in a scoreless opening 10 minutes.
Giants forward Jon Patton kicked the ball off the side of his boot straight to the man standing the mark and Eagles ruckman Nathan Vardy managed a fresh air handball to highlight a comedy of errors.
But GWS turned on its vaunted spread from defence to take control of the contest. Tom Scully and Toby Greene made an impact and it could have been a larger advantage if not for the work of Eagles defenders Jeremy McGovern and Tom Barrass.
The GWS Giants appear to be on track to lower the AFL’s colours for the first time this finals series in a head to head crowd attendance battle with the NRL.
Footy commentators have been surprised by the Giants’ struggles to attract a big crowd to their boutique stadium for their showdown with West Coast.
On a cold and unforgiving night in Sydney, many fans appear to have stayed away with large areas of Spotless Stadium completely vacant despite the enormity of the situation with a preliminary final birth on the line.
Across the road at Sydney Olympic Park, the Parramatta Eels’ clash with the North Queensland Cowboys at ANZ Stadium is building as one of the better crowds of the NRL finals series.
The NRL has forecast the Eels-Cowboys game will attract a crowd of 35,000, while the Giants’ home stadium, which has a capacity of 24,000, appears significantly short on numbers.
Jeremy Cameron says he’s devastated his 2017 campaign is over with his team’s finals charge on a knife’s edge.
Cameron has already conceded he will not return to football this season because of a hamstring injury — even if his team makes it through to the grand final.
“I spoke to a few people at the club ... some of the guys are out the whole season who missed every game, like Matthew Buntine and a few of these guys.
Both GWS and West Coast will line up on Spotless Stadium with the same 22 players they announced on Thursday.
It means West Coast will field their most experienced team in the club’s history.