Dayne Zorko's running battle with Touk Miller looks set to continue on the Gold Coast on Saturday, even as the Brisbane skipper enjoys more time up front for the Lions.
The pair had run-ins after both of last season's QClashes, where Miller's hard tag on the influential midfielder dominated discussion.
First Zorko refused to shake Miller's hand after the Suns' early-season AFL win, while the pair were locked in a heated post-match exchange after the Lions returned the favour later in the season.
Miller has been one of the Suns' best in a 3-2 start to the season, second in the AFL for tackles (7.6 per game) while logging a club-record nine in the first quarter against Carlton a fortnight ago.
Zorko leads the league in pressure acts (29.6 per game) as the Lions (3-2) try to regroup following back-to-back losses.
Lions coach Chris Fagan said he had allowed Zorko stints upfield because he enjoyed them and was happy to "mix it up" to allow some younger teammates time in the middle.
But a smirking Gold Coast coach Stuart Dew admitted it'd be tough to keep them apart regardless.
"I'm sure at some point they'll be running next to each other," he said.
"How often and how long we'll just wait and see ... they're probably both expecting it too I think."
Dew leaned on Fagan during his rookie coaching season last year and said he was happy to see the progress they had made.
But with a 4-2 record the prize for Saturday's victor at Metricon Stadium it's business time for both coaches, particularly on the back of comprehensive losses last weekend.
"Both of us are in the same boat this week, so that'll make the competition pretty fierce I'd imagine," Fagan said.
Australian Associated Press