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AFL preview: Tigers v Hawks

Last time we met: Richmond R18, 2016 Watch highlights from Hawthorn's Round 18 loss against Richmond.
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 31: Ty Vickery of the Tigers is tackled by Shaun Burgoyne of the Hawks during the 2015 AFL round 18 match between the Hawthorn Hawks and the Richmond Tigers at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne, Australia on July 31, 2015. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media)
Shaun Burgoyne pursues Richmond's Ty Vickery in Round 18 last year.

SUMMARY

After five losses in a row, Richmond now has the task of taking on the reigning premiers on the Friday night stage.

It's a daunting task for the 1-5 Tigers, but it also gives them a chance to roll the dice in a match few would expect them to win.

On the other side, Hawthorn is looking at an easy kill after a humbling 75-point loss to Greater Western Sydney in round six.

The Hawks have been off their game, and only sit 4-2 and in eighth spot because of their experience and will to get over the line in tight games.

They might consider this Friday night the perfect opportunity to play themselves back into premiership-winning form.     

WHERE AND WHEN

MCG, Friday, May 6, 7.50pm AEST 

TV AND RADIO

Click here for broadcast guide 

LAST FIVE TIMES

R18, 2015, Richmond 10.11 (71) d Hawthorn 7.11 (53) at the MCG
R6, 2014, Hawthorn 18.10 (118) d Richmond 7.10 (52) at the MCG
R19, 2013, Richmond 16.11 (107) d Hawthorn 9.12 (66) at the MCG
R9, 2012, Richmond 21.11 (137) d Hawthorn 10.15 (75) at the MCG
R3, 2011, Hawthorn 17.13 (115) d Richmond 6.16 (52) at the MCG 

Will it be the Tigers chasing the Hawks, or the Hawks chasing the Tigers? Picture: AFL Media

THE SIX POINTS 

1. Anthony Miles and Dustin Martin were the difference for the Tigers when they beat the Hawks in the teams' last meeting. Miles was best on ground with 30 disposals, while Martin racked up 27. Ivan Maric dominated the ruck, earning a Brownlow vote with 31 hit-outs. 

2. Richmond’s scoring continues to fall compared to last season, with an average of 80 points a game after it was 87 in 2015. Hawthorn is kicking 93 points a game, down from 109 in 2015. 

3. The Hawks are one of the best tackling sides so far in 2016, ranked second with an average of 77.2. The Tigers are struggling in this area, ranked 15th with 62.2 per game.

4. Richmond and Hawthorn have met only three times on a Friday night at the MCG and the Tigers are undefeated.

5. Richmond is on track for its worst start to a season since Damien Hardwick’s team lost its first nine games in 2010. Hawthorn hasn’t lost consecutive games since early in 2014.

6. Vice-captain Brett Deledio has taken back the No.1 ranking at Tigerland in the Official AFL Player Ratings, brought to you by Schick. It took Deledio one match back to unseat suspended teammate Alex Rance.

IT'S A BIG WEEK FOR … Ivan Maric

The vice-captain gathered just four possessions against Port Adelaide and comes up against ruck duo Ben McEvoy and Jon Ceglar, who shared 30 against GWS. Maric is a leader at Tigerland but the 30-year-old is battered and is being supported by an equally wounded Shaun Hampson. The pair has been found out by mobile ruckmen. 

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs