Liam Anthony is hoping for the perfect 25th birthday present this Sunday at Patersons Stadium when his North Melbourne Kangaroos tackle the West Coast Eagles in an elimination final.
The Railways product said he will have family and friends in the stands as the Kangaroos hope to keep their season alive.
Standing in his way is West Coast and good mate Josh Kennedy.
Also a GNFL product, Kennedy has shook off an ankle injury to take his place in the Eagles’ 22 for Sunday’s game.
Last Friday night’s game against Hawthorn was just Kennedy’s second since suffering an ankle injury in round five against the Western Bulldogs.
Anthony is confident his former East Fremantle colts teammate will not stand in his way.
“Back home on my birthday, so it is going to be a good day I think, hopefully we can get the win to top it all off,” he said.
“We know it is going to be a tough game but we think if we play our way and play our best we know we can more than match them.
“We want to win the contested ball first because then we know not too many teams can go with us on the spread.
Anthony, who accumulated the fourth most disposals on the Kangaroos’ list this season, said there had not been any text messages sent between the two friends this week.
“There might be a few words said out on the field, but other than that it is all professional from here on in.”
Kennedy, the former Northampton Ram, was under an injury cloud earlier in the week after the Eagles’ loss to Hawthorn.
He will take his place in the West Coast forward line and Anthony said the Kangaroos were confident of slowing down the power forward.
“If we take care of Josh then it is going to go a long way to helping us win,” he said.