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Suns out to ensure Ballarat is no Dog house of horrors

The Western Bulldogs want to make rivals uncomfortable when they visit Ballarat, but Gold Coast plan on doing some haunting of their own.

New Suns coach Damien Hardwick stuck posters of scary movies and their infamous villains in the team meeting room this week, part of his trademark themed match preparation that helped net three AFL flags with Richmond.

The Bulldogs are 7-4 at the 11,000-capacity venue, while the Suns are winless in two trips.

They would move to 3-0 - their best start since 2016 - with a breakthrough victory on Sunday.

Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge thinks it's a definite "home-ground advantage" compared to being under the roof at Marvel Stadium.

But Hardwick, who rates slasher film series Halloween protagonist Michael Myers among the most chilling, wants to flip the script and have the hosts fear them.

"There's a few themes going around the place ... I generally like my horror movies,'' Hardwick said.

"I don't mind Halloween. That mask gets me every time.

"As Bevo (Beveridge) said, they weren't at their best last week (in a loss to Melbourne) ... but they play some really good footy down there and it's a challenging environment.

"What we've got to do is go and steal some away wins, and this is an opportunity for us to start to fulfil that prophecy."

Beveridge has again left out three-time All-Australian Jack Macrae, saying a pre-season hamstring niggle meant he wasn't yet ready to tackle the might of the Suns' in-form midfield.

Impressive 18-year-old power forward Jed Walter will debut for the Suns, the No.3 pick armed with the full faith of Hardwick, despite a pre-season collarbone fracture.

Jed Walter and Damien Hardwick
Damien Hardwick has named Jed Walter to make his debut for the Suns against the Bulldogs. (Morgan Hancock/AAP PHOTOS)

"We could sit there and be conservative and put him in at VFL level, or we could put him in the cut and thrust of AFL level," Hardwick said of the Gold Coast teenager.

"Let's just get him in there.

"We think he's going to be a really good player, learn on the job, get great coaching, great feedback and great experience for him."

Then there's Brandon Ellis, who will play his 250th game under the coach who led him into his first.

"And he'll coach my last, whenever that is," Ellis said of Hardwick, who he won two flags with before heading north.

"It was hard (to leave the Tigers). You're winning every week and coming up here not knowing what's going to happen.

"But it's been a great journey ... we're in that window now to give finals a real nudge."