Suns go into battle for Gaz
AFL: Gary Ablett was bashed by Carlton, and now the Gold Coast is poised to mirror the tactic by targeting one of St Kilda's stars while protecting its former captain in his 300th game.
The Suns won't reveal which Saints player will be on the receiving end of the tactic on Sunday at Etihad Stadium as they look to free up Ablett in his milestone match.
"I have no doubt we will have a target player this week," Ablett said. "We probably did that early in the season and then went away from it a little bit. I'm not 100% sure why but we did talk about that after the (Carlton) game.
"We will target a player for them. We will be making sure they have a tough day."
Ablett still bears the bruises from Saturday's gruelling test when Blues midfielder-turned-hitman Ed Curnow took every available opportunity to batter the dual Brownlow Medallist in a bid to silence him.
Ablett still managed to record 25 disposals but wasn't as influential as he has been previously this season.
The 33-year-old said his teammates had tried to quell the Blues' aggressive tactics but expected more protection against St Kilda.
"They did speak about it after the game and if it was to happen again that they would go and put more blocks on, so I'm looking forward to that," Ablett said.
Ablett is 16 seasons into a career that has included two Brownlow Medals (2009, 2013), two premierships with Geelong (2007, 2009), eight All-Australian selections and five best-and-fairest awards between the Cats and Suns.
Ablett said he had no regrets about his career and the move to the Gold Coast, despite conceding he thought he would have played finals with the Suns already.
The midfielder said playing finals footy with the Gold Coast was one of the few things left that he wanted to achieve and remained confident the side can still get it done in 2017.
"We will continue to put in the hard work and this season is not over," Ablett said. "We have still got 10 games to go and we have got a great opportunity this week against St Kilda.
"If we can get a win then I think that puts us not too far out of the eight.
"We believe we play the right brand of football, we just haven't been doing it consistently enough for four quarters. I truly believe we can (make finals)."