Mansfield Courier

Giants welcome selection headaches


GWS will welcome their massive selection headache as key players, including captain Stephen Coniglio, put their names up for selection ahead of their eliminatio­n final against Sydney.

The Giants sealed a finals spot by beating Carlton on Saturday night and after being hit by injury for much of the season, have players jostling for places.

Coniglio played a cameo role as the substitute, collecting six touches after replacing Xavier O’Halloran (tight calf) in the fourth quarter.

It was Coniglio’s first game since round 18 after a toe injury and just his fourth for the year, with the 27-year-old to build further game time by backing up in a scratch match against Essendon on Sunday morning.

“We thought we could pick to win both ways on this,” Cameron said.

“Last week we thought that he probably would have been struggling to play again this year and then we got 50-55 minutes of footy into him last Saturday. So he’s probably at about 85 per cent.

“He’s played probably 15 minutes now, he’ll have a good little hit-out in the morning for about probably another 60-70 minutes.

“I thought he looked sharp in that time, and just gives us another week for him to progress and put his hand up for finals footy next week.”

Cameron said Coniglio had “turned the corner” and if he proved his fitness, he would face the Swans.

“If we think he’s ready for finals footy, we will definitely take him,” he said.

“He’s experience­d, he’s been around for nine years, so he’s got that on his side.”

Veteran defender Phil Davis and ruckman Braydon Preuss will also play in Sunday’s scratch match, along with Bobby Hill.

Off-season Preuss, rested veteran Shane Mumford and Kieren Briggs, who impressed against Carlton, will all compete for a ruck spot.

“It’s been tight for spots which is good. We probably haven’t had that much, especially the first 15 weeks, because we had a lot of challenges with injuries and young fellows got some some opportunit­ies,” Cameron said.

“When they took those opportunit­ies we wanted to keep them rolling, and if that’s been at the the expense of some of the other players that have been around for a while.

“It’s been quite tough, but they’ve handled that extremely well. Davis gets a game tomorrow, which is good, he can play 100 minutes of footy and put his hand up.”

Meanwhile, the Giants will sweat how O’Halloran pulls up from a tight calf.

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