I don't actually think it was that bad a gamble, running Carlisle in the ruck. It worked for him last year, in terms of getting him around the footy, getting some touch, and just letting him play. simplifying his role somewhat, there's so many elements to playing in our forward line - mainly deciding whether to point and scream or pout and sook in the hour between having it kicked to you.The reason we played with no ruckman is: 1. Belly's form was so bad, he just had to be dropped. 2. They intend to go with McKernan medium-term, and he could not be elevated until next match. 3. Why pick Giles and drop him the following week? 4. Giles would have got spanked by Nic Nat in the hitouts, so it made sense to try to level the ledger around the ground with Carlisle. 5. Giles tested abysmally in preseason running drills and subsequent GPS data confirms this, so he would've struggled on the large expanses of Subi anyway.
How is that a reason? We’ve picked Gwilt a couple of times only to drop him the following week. That’s what ‘back-ups’ are for.
Because Giles isn’t in our long-term plans, and it would have denied someone else a game I suppose. Also, they probably thought that giving Carlisle a run in the ruck maybe would have given him the opportunity to get his hands on the footy playing on-ball, and release some pressure. As it turned out, Buckets did SFA around the ground, but I can see the merit in trying it.
I wouldn’t think Gwilt is either.
I’m also not sure how chucking Carlisle up against the all-jumping, all-leaping circus that is NicNat was going to release any pressure on him. He was always gonna get mauled.
We weakened our forward line in order to weaken our rucks.
Anyway, the only conceivable reason Giles didn’t play, is because the club thinks he is really, really, really rubbish. I’d be interested to know what the real point of contention is, the VFL games I’ve seen (admittedly on TV) he’s looked just like the Giles from GWS. Not sure what they were expecting.
It just didn’t work this year. And it probably cost us a few clearances too. Calculated gamble. Meh.