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Simpson Returns as Only Change

Dawson Simpson is back for his first game since round eight. - GWS Giants,Brisbane Lions,GIANTS Stadium,AFL,Dawson Simpson
Dawson Simpson is back for his first game since round eight.

Dawson Simpson will return to the GIANTS’ lineup for Sunday’s crunch clash with the Brisbane Lions at GIANTS Stadium.

The 30-year-old comes into the GIANTS 22 for the first time since the round eight loss to Hawthorn.

Simpson replaces Shane Mumford who was ruled out on Thursday and has been in fine form in the NEAFL averaging 42.2 hitouts per game across his past four matches. 

Coach Leon Cameron says he has full confidence in Simpson to be able to step up in the absence of Mumford.

“Both Dawson Simpson and Matty Flynn have been playing some terrific footy which is great for our ruck stocks and those two had a really good battle at training this week," he said.

“Dawson gets the nod and he’s really looking forward to coming back into the team and taking on a really good ruckman in Martin.”

Meanwhile reigning Kevin Sheedy Medallist Lachie Whitfield won’t make his much anticipated return following a collarbone injury in round 11.

“Lachie trained really well in our main session yesterday but we’re just going to take a cautious approach with this one,” Cameron said.

“We’ve erred on the conservative side when it comes to selection quite a few times this year and we believe that giving Lachie another week will give him the best chance to finish the season on a really strong note.” 

Sunday’s game shapes as an important one for both the GIANTS and the Lions.  

The GIANTS could move as high as second on the ladder with a win, while a Brisbane win would see the GIANTS drop to at least fifth. 

“They’re one of the form sides of the competition at the moment and deserve to be knocking on the door of the top four,” Cameron said.

“We acknowledge that our last performance wasn’t good enough so are looking forward to playing in front of our home fans at GIANTS Stadium for the first time in a month in what is shaping as a really big match for both sides.” 

Round 16

GIANTS v Brisbane Lions
Sunday, July 7 at 4:40pm
GIANTS Stadium

FB: Sam Taylor, Nick Haynes, Heath Shaw
HB: Jeremy Finlayson, Phil Davis, Sam Reid
C: Harry Perryman, Tim Taranto, Zac Williams
HF: Jacob Hopper, Jeremy Cameron, Toby Greene
FF: Brett Deledio, Harry Himmelberg, Zac Langdon
Ruck: Adam Tomlinson, Stephen Coniglio, Josh Kelly 

Interchange: Dawson Simpson, Jackson Hately, Brent Daniels, Adam Kennedy

Emergencies: Ian Hill, Matt Flynn, Jake Stein, Daniel Lloyd