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Rested Crows fired up for fast start against North

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Adelaide ruckman Sam Jacobs expects a potentially physical visit from a North Melbourne outfit still boiling after last week’s fiery loss to Hawthorn.

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The Crows will be well rested and confident going into Thursday’s clash at Adelaide Oval, having come off a bye and a four-match winning streak.

The Kangaroos, meanwhile, will be fresh from tough losses to the Hawks and Geelong.

Jacobs wonders if Brad Scott’s side might bring south some of the past fortnight’s physicality.

“Hawthorn and North Melbourne probably have a bit of a history of that,” Jacobs said yesterday.

“I guess the commentators spoke during the game that Hawthorn probably got after them a bit and North Melbourne felt like they wanted to come out and respond.

“It worked – they started the game really well.

“It will be interesting to see what they do but the important thing for us is to make sure we’re winning the ball at the contest and giving ourselves the best chance.”

Jacobs has no worries about lethargy or a loss of momentum despite the Crows’ 10-day break, saying the team has prepared well for the draw and are ready to attack from the outset.

He is more focused on how far the team has come since their round-one 10-point loss to North Melbourne, feeling they had increased their composure at crucial junctures.

“We actually played some pretty good footy against the Kangaroos earlier in the year (but) at critical contests we probably lost near the back end of that third quarter,” Jacobs said.

“As a team we’ve changed in how we deal with those situations and we handle them well now.”

Kangaroos Andrew Swallow (concussion), Ben Cunnington (corked quad) and Jarrad Waite (hip) are racing the clock to prove their fitness for the match, but star midfielder Daniel Wells (ankle) is a likely inclusion.

Luke McDonald faces a lengthy stint on the sidelines amid club fears of a serious left hamstring injury.

For the Crows, veteran Nathan van Berlo (foot) is fit for selection, but forward Riley Knight (foot) remains unavailable.

GWS recruit Curtly Hampton is back in full training following foot surgery and is set to return via the reserves in coming weeks.

-AAP

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