Dogs out to win against rival Roos - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Dogs out to win against rival Roos

By Robert Grant 09/08/2008 11:33:19 AM Comments (0)

The Western Bulldogs will have to reverse a worrying trend if they are to shore up their top two spot on the AFL ladder on Sunday.

The Dogs meet their nemesis, North Melbourne, in a vital clash at Telstra Dome, just 10 rounds after losing to the Kangaroos by three points.

Not only did they suffer an upset loss in round nine, but the Bulldogs have been defeated the past four times they have faced North Melbourne.

Bulldogs forward Mitch Hahn said it was vital the Bulldogs seized the initiative from the start on Sunday.

"They're in great form and we're getting them at a good time," he said.

"They have had the wood over us the last couple of games so it's important we come out and win the contested football.

"We always seem to have a good contest against them. We know what we're going to get against North Melbourne, like Sydney - they're hard and contested and never give up so we'll have to be on our game.

Hahn said it was pivotal the Bulldogs didn't drop their intensity towards the back-end of the season.

"There's four games to go and we want to go into the finals with momentum," Hahn said.

"We don't want to lose the last four games and all of a sudden come into the finals not with any form behind us.

"Our next four weeks are really important to make sure we are continuing to do what we have been doing for the first 18 games of the season."

Hahn did say, however, that the said had prepared exhaustively for the run home and was now ready to lighten the training load.

"There might be a few hard sessions to come but we did up the load a little bit and a few players got a little bit sore and a little bit tired.

"But we've pushed through that now and last week with a lighter training load hopefully that's going to help us come the finals."

Kangaroos star utility Drew Petrie, who has just signed a new three-year contract with the club, said the match would be a crucial test of the side's goal after the mid-season break.

"We've set ourselves for the last eight rounds since the break and we knew that we'd have to win more than half of those games to make the eight," Petrie said.

"We've nearly done that already but we're still not guaranteed a spot because everyone else is winning around us and it's that close."

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