Lions fend off plucky Cats, advance to AFLW decider

The Brisbane Lions have held on for a thrilling four-point win over Geelong to advance to their fifth AFLW grand final.

The Brisbane Lions are through to their fifth AFLW grand final after surviving a giant scare from Geelong to pip the Cats in a four-point thriller.

Heavy favourites to advance, the Lions had everything thrown at them in Saturday night's preliminary final by the plucky Cats at their Springfield headquarters.

But after losing the lead five minutes into the final term, the Lions reclaimed their advantage when star defender Shannon Campbell moved forward and kicked what would be the winning goal with six minute left.

The Lions held on grimly in the dying stages to prevail 6.2 (38) to 5.4 (34), setting up a meeting with the winner of Sunday's preliminary final between North Melbourne and Adelaide.

They will get an opportunity to redeem themselves after losing last year's decider to Melbourne during the Lions' opening of their new Michael Voss Oval base.

Brisbane will again host the grand final if Adelaide prevail, but will travel to Ikon Park in Melbourne if the Kangaroos win the other preliminary final.

The win looks to have come at a cost for the Lions, however, with key forward Dakota Davidson appearing to suffer a suspected serious left knee injury late in the third term.

Davidson, who booted two of the Lions' goals, was inconsolable on the bench and will undergo scans to determine the damage.

Lions football boss Breeanna Brock attempted to play down the severity of the injury, saying the club would give her every opportunity to prove her fitness for the grand final.

The Lions will be forced to find alternate avenues to goal if Davidson doesn't play next week if they are to win their second AFLW premiership.

Courtney Hodder and Charlotte Mullins kicked early goals, while Orla O'Dwyer also slotted an important major for the Lions.

Lions hard nut Belle Dawes put in a super third quarter to finish as the leading possession winner on the ground with 22 touches.

Star Brisbane midfielder Ally Anderson praised the resilience of the Lions, who lost All-Australians Emily Bates, Jesse Wardlaw and Greta Bodey to expansion clubs during the off-season.

"It doesn't even feel right now," the reigning league best-and-fairest winner told the Seven Network.

"It was a hard-fought win and Geelong really gave it to us. It means so much.

"You really always want to get back there (into a grand final)."

The result ends a brave run for Geelong, who fell agonisingly short of reaching the club's first AFLW decider after upsetting reigning premiers Melbourne in last week's semi-final.

The Cats had never won an AFLW post-season match until beating Essendon in an elimination final a fortnight ago.

Young midfield star Georgie Prespakis was typically important, as was Nina Morrison, to give the Cats an enormous chance of causing a boilover.

Cats veteran Renee Garing was chaired from the ground after previously announcing her retirement at season's end.