WESTERN Bulldogs have loaded up on stars while being brutal with the axe as they attempt to get their premiership defence back on track in Friday’s crunch clash with Geelong at Simonds Stadium.
The eighth-placed Bulldogs welcomed back Robert Murphy, Travis Cloke, Dale Morris, Mitch Wallis and Tory Dickson for the high-stakes match.
Wallis will play his first AFL match since breaking his leg in round 18 last year, while the return of Cloke and Dickson helps bolster a depleted forward line.
However, premiership stars Tom Liberatore, Fletcher Roberts, Zaine Cordy, and Toby McLean were made to pay for last week’s loss to West Coast, while Matthew Boyd is out with a shoulder injury.
Liberatore had just eight disposals against the Eagles.
The Cats welcome back Scott Selwood and Lachie Henderson, with Rhys Stanley (knee) and George Horlin-Smith (axed) the two players to make way.
Sydney have been bolstered by the returns of Dane Rampe, Gary Rohan and Kurt Tippett for Saturday’s match against St Kilda, but defender Aliir Aliir couldn’t squeeze his way back in to the side.
The Saints lost patience with Josh Bruce, axing the forward after he managed just three goals in his past two games.
Paddy McCartin has been named in his place, with the Saints also recalling Daniel McKenzie and Koby Stevens.
Richmond coach Damien Hardwick has made five changes after last week’s after- the-siren loss to Fremantle.
Fit-again midfielder Dion Prestia headlines the inclusions, while prized draftee Shai Bolton has been named for his debut.
Jake Batchelor, Todd Elton, Corey Ellis, and Oleg Markov were all dumped, while Dan Butler has a groin injury.
The Giants welcome back feisty forward Toby Greene from suspension, but midfielder Stephen Coniglio is set for a long stint on the sidelines with an ankle injury.
The Magpies welcome back Adam Treloar from an ankle injury for their must-win clash with Hawthorn.
The Hawks lose Cyril Rioli (knee), Jack Fitzpatrick (concussion), Ben Stratton (knee) and James Frawley (toe) in a quadruple blow.
The injuries have opened the door for Ty Vickery to play his fourth game of the year, while Kaiden Brand, Taylor Duryea, and Brendan Whitecross also return.
Adelaide’s fall from grace has claimed two big-name victims, with forward Josh Jenkins and veteran David Mackay dropped for Saturday’s clash with Brisbane at the Gabba.
Former basketballer Hugh Greenwood and Jordan Gallucci have been named for their AFL debuts.
The Lions welcome back skipper Dayne Beams from injury, but Tom Rockliff is out with a shoulder issue.
Veteran Drew Petrie is a chance to make an early return from a broken hand after being named in West Coast’s extended squad for Sunday’s clash with Essendon.
Fremantle are set to be bolstered by the return of Stephen Hill from a hamstring injury for Sunday’s match against Carlton in Perth.
But Hayden Ballantyne (hamstring) will need to wait at least one more week before making his return for the Dockers.
North Melbourne welcome back spearhead Jarrad Waite from suspension for their clash with Melbourne, while former skipper Andrew Swallow is also a chance to return after being named on the extended bench.