Lions set for big Dusty challenge

The Lions maintain they are much better equipped this time to deal with Richmond star Dustin Martin.
The Lions maintain they are much better equipped this time to deal with Richmond star Dustin Martin.

Richmond superstar Dustin Martin holds no fears for Brisbane, who insist they are better prepared to quell the powerful matchwinner's influence in their AFL qualifying final than they have been in the past.

Martin has made the finals his own in recent years and torched the Lions with six goals when the teams met at the same stage last season.

He was influential with 24 disposals in their most recent meeting, in round 10, and has struck form again at the right time of year.

But Brisbane captain Dayne Zorko is confident the home side can shut down Martin at the Gabba on Friday night.

"Last year we actually did a really good job on him (in the midfield) and he had to go forward, but then he ended up kicking (six) goals and we probably didn't plan for that," Zorko said.

"We've planned a little bit harder this time in all different scenarios and we still back our whole team defence to get the job done on him.

"It's two systems going at each other and we're not really worried about the individuals.

"But he's someone that can change the game very quickly, so we need to be mindful of that and we'll have plans in place for that."

Both sides have been able to bring back star players from injury for the blockbuster, with All-Australian defender Harris Andrews and Jarrod Berry returning for Brisbane.

Shai Bolton returns for Richmond, with Dion Prestia set to make his first appearance since round five after an ankle syndesmosis injury.

The Tigers have won the last 15 meetings between the sides and Brisbane have still not won a finals match since 2009, having bombed out in straight sets last year.

Zorko denied the Lions felt any added pressure associated with those records and said they had learnt from their finals failure.

"We've experienced it, we understand what it takes and what the occasion is going to be like," Zorko said.

"I feel like we're really well prepared.

"We only played Richmond two months ago so we have a good understanding of how they play and they have a good understanding of how we play.

"If we can execute for longer then we'll be OK."

Australian Associated Press