Where and when: Marvel Stadium, Sunday April 7, 2:20pm AEST
Last time they met: Mars Stadium, round seven, 2018: Western Bulldogs 11.15 (81) defeated Gold Coast 10.12 (72)
The Bulldogs managed to overcome a stubborn SUNS outfit in a Ballarat arm wrestle without captain Easton Wood and star Marcus Bontempelli. The home side trailed at each change but Jack Macrae's 40 touches helped them over the line. David Swallow was stand-in skipper on the day and he led from the front, with 26 disposals, six clearances and seven score involvements while Touk Miller and Ben Ainsworth were also among the best for Gold Coast.
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What it means for Western Bulldogs: Two nail-biting wins, the latest a barnstorming fightback over the Hawks, has the Dogs brimming with belief. Another win would take them to 3-0 to start the season for the first time since 2009, a year they made the preliminary final.
What it means for Gold Coast: A combined margin of four points in the first two rounds for the 1-1 SUNS says how competitive they've been. They took down the Dockers last Sunday and a repeat of that against the Bulldogs would be quite a statement, particularly on the road.
How the Western Bulldogs win: More of the same. They're No.1 in the competition for clearances differential and inside 50s, which is giving them the opportunities to kick a winning score.
How Gold Coast wins: Make the most of Jarrod Witts. The SUNS are second for hitouts and the Dogs are 18th, so the co-captain should give his side first use. Improved goalkicking accuracy is vital too, as Gold Coast almost cost itself against Fremantle with 0.8 in the third quarter.
The stat: Western Bulldogs have beaten Gold Coast five times in row by an average of 32.2 points.
The match-up: Alex Sexton v Easton Wood
Sexton has kicked four goals in each game to emerge as an early leader in the Coleman Medal race and looks the biggest threat at either end. Ranked the fifth-best SUNS in the AFL Player Ratings and set to reach the 100-game milestone, the 25-year-old is likely to be shadowed by the athletic and disciplined Wood