Lions didn't respect us: Suns' Rischitelli - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lions didn't respect us: Suns' Rischitelli

Laine Clark 11/08/2011 06:38:23 PM Comments (0)

Dismissed as a "mercenary" before the first Queensland AFL derby, Gold Coast Suns' Michael Rischitelli expects the Brisbane Lions to keep their mouths shut ahead of this weekend's rematch.

He accused his former club of lacking respect before their inaugural May showdown - summed up by Lions veteran Simon Black's now infamous description of ex-teammates Rischitelli and Jared Brennan.

But Rischitelli claimed that had changed after the Suns' shock eight-point win, judging by the Lions' cautious approach to Saturday night's Gabba clash.

Asked on Thursday if the Lions respected them, Rischitelli said: "Probably not early.

"But I suppose we've got one over them so they'll be a bit more respectful now."

Rischitelli even took a cheeky dig at Black, after the Brownlow Medallist was conspicuous by his absence in the build-up to 'Q-Clash' II.

"He's been a bit quiet, there's been nothing said in the paper this week ironically," he said.

"It's been quiet this week. Obviously he's a good player so we'll have to go about doing our thing."

After being offered up as trade bait, Rischitelli left the Lions for the cashed-up Suns at the end of the 2010 season - but not after collecting their best and fairest award.

The lingering resentment towards his former club appeared to rear its head again on Thursday when Rischitelli stressed the Lions clash was a big game - but not for him.

"Not in particular. It's just another game," he said.

"I think it (the derby) is still a big occasion.

"It was a good feeling to beat the Lions.

"The boys are up for every week but because it's a Queensland rivalry, the boys might find a little more in the tank."

Captain Gary Ablett was expected to return from a hamstring injury after missing last round's 150-point thumping at the hands of ex-club Geelong.

But code hopper Karmichael Hunt was tipped to miss the Lions clash due to illness.

"It has been a big month or six weeks with K(Hunt)," Rischitelli said.

"I think Bluey (Suns coach Guy McKenna) says he hasn't wanted to cook him.

"But he has been good for us and I think he will be back in a couple of weeks."

Ablett was one of five inclusions in the Suns squad announced on Thursday.

But he will need to pass Friday morning's fitness test at Carrara before getting the green light.

Joining him in the squad were Dion Prestia, Matt Shaw, Joey Daye and Charlie Dixon.

Their long injury list includes Campbell Brown (pelvis) and Jeremy Taylor (groin), who have both been ruled out of for the rest of the season.

Daniel Harris has been booked for groin surgery while Rory Thompson (illness) and Hayden Jolly (omitted) also miss out against the Lions.

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