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Five Games To Watch: 2018 AFL Fixture

Troy Daniel  October 31, 2017 9:30 AM

Seven Games To Watch In 2018 With the launch of the 2018 Fixture, BulldogsTV gives you seven home games you won't want to miss, including some Friday and Saturday night blockbusters, and some emerging rivalries.

westernbulldogs.com.au breaks down the five games you simply cannot miss.

Greater Western Sydney Giants v Western Bulldogs
Round 1, UNSW Canberra Oval
Sunday, March 25, 1:10pm (Foxtel)

It’ll have been 212 long days since we last played by the time Round 1 rolls around, a time spent by most of us rolling our eyes (respectfully) at Richmond fans, pretending to care about horse racing and wondering when it was that you stopped being able to name the Australian test team. So, while it’s far from ideal to open our 2018 campaign on the banks of Lake Burley Griffin, it won’t be hard to get excited about who we’re playing. While some rivalries are manufactured, it’s a very real thing with these Giants for a whole range of reasons that we know longer need mentioning.

Western Bulldogs v Essendon
Round 3, Etihad Stadium
Sunday, April 8, 3.20pm (Seven)

This one was easy. Dogs v Dons, and the first time we will see Jake Stringer in the red and black. What a cauldron Etihad will be that day.  Essendon fans, and there’s a few of them, will no doubt be vocal in support of the new guy. As we said here, despite there being only one real meaningful moment between the two sides on field this century, there’s definitely a bit of feeling between the two camps, so add a dash of Jake Stringer and this could be something. If you haven’t already, circle this one in your calendar and let’s pack out the place.

Western Bulldogs v Melbourne
Round 11, Etihad Stadium
Saturday June 2, 1.45pm (Foxtel)

Round 13, 2017 did not leave us with fond memories. There was the Instagram thing, Lin Jong’s season ending injury and of course the 56-113 final score. It was like a prize fight where the up and coming challenger floored the champ, and not many games would have left fans with a hollower feeling than that one did. For many, the season never quite felt the same after that game. But the best thing about footy is you always get another crack and you can be absolutely certain that the boys will be looking forward to this one, and you should be too.

Western Bulldogs v Gold Coast Suns
Round 7, Mars Stadium, Ballarat
Saturday, May 5, 1.45pm (Foxtel)

If you missed out on the experience of taking in a game at the very fancy Mars Stadium last season, you probably heard about it. The players loved it – Luke Beveridge said it was the best surface in the League, and the fans loved it, and how could you not? It was the first ever game for premiership points in the heart of the Victorian Goldfields and yet managed to feel like we’d been there forever. 10,087 people poured into the old Eureka Stadium and the place was resplendent in its new red, white and blue decor. Our May date with the Suns will be one of two games there this year, including the return date with the Power on July 20, so do yourself a favour and lock at least one of them in.

Richmond v Western Bulldogs
Round 23, MCG
TBA

We don’t know when this one will be yet, but it could be scheduled for Friday lunchtime and it won’t matter because it will be huge. The last two premiers squaring off in the final round at the MCG, probably in a marquee time slot? This can’t come quick enough. The key, of course, will be the consequences. What are we playing for, what are they playing for? Finals, top 4, top 2, who knows. Either way, we know the Dogs fans love going to the MCG and the Tigers will be out in force. Make no mistake, this one will look and feel like a final and you’re not going to want to miss out.