Hurley too slow? Ambrose no good? Seriously kiddies, how about waiting till the season actually starts?
I agree with this. There are a few guys Ambrose matches up badly on and Hawkins is one of them. But otherwise, I think he can do a very good job most weeks.
But I think we really need the 2015 Hurley to re-appear this year. That year he was shutting down a quality opponent and still providing plenty of rebound.
Paddy was really good last year in amongst injury. I just reckon people need to chill a bit
Why cant we fling hooker back more often in games?
It might throw the other teams matchups out the window with a smaller forward line.
explains why he lumbers
Had another look at the first half. We were certainly better than solid and our pressure across the ground and around the stopagges was vastly improved on last year. For most of the half the cats struggled to move the ball against us save for a handful of clean clearances.
Smith is going to be fantastic for us, his defensive intensity is fantastic and he looks like a million bucks when he gets it in space. He was involved in a lot of our best work, was ruthless when tackling bigger opponents and ran very hard to pressure disposal. McGrath also brings plenty to the table defensively. He’s prepared to work hard to close space, chase and make multiple efforts in a row. Zerret was a lone wolf in this regard last year and the addition of these two to the middle is going to make a massive difference. Hopefully they drag a few others with them with the standards they set.
McGrath and parish are incredibly quick by hand too and clean off the deck. They can both turn a half chance situation into something damaging in the blink of an eye.
Hepp Myers and parish worked their tails off just crunching in and putting their bodies on the line. I do think we need to improve their connection with tbell though and get better at identifying the dangerous side of their opponents. Tbell won some clean taps with backhanders which were presumably planned yet they got sharked because we didn’t get someone there.
The impact stringer can have at stopagges as a shock trooper is also obvious. A couple of times he was able to power through and away which is not something we’ve had probably since Jason Johnson. It’s clear too that we are going to push him to keep making the effort. After his second goal in the third it was clear he called for a switch out and they said no go back in.
Hawkins schooled Ambrose, no question, but they seperated Hurley and Gleeson well and perhaps too easily which suggests we really need Hurley playing as a 3 man rather than the 2. I still think one of Hartley or brown have to play. Even though some sides are going shorter forward a 3 tall defensive structure is still pretty standard.
Fanta is the missing link at the moment we don’t have another line breaker in the side like him. Even so we did manage to look more than threatening and in a few rounds the few marks that went down and passes that just dropped or just sat up will be cleaned up considerably.
There is a lot to get excited about from this game. We certainly don’t look set to take the whole comp by storm but we will work into the season.
I’m not as worried about Gleeson’s loss as others. I think it makes a bit more room for bj to play that role. it will likely force us to play 3 talls and I think we will look better balanced for it. People forget bj was also at least the equal of Hodge when he played that half back role. He’ll force sides to plan for him which will help Saad and Coner. Between those two bj and Hurls we have a wealth of attacking weapons down back.
We probably do still look a little small around the ball and at some time we should look at adding a bit more size. For the time being though I’m content to see them work on their stopagge setups and keep the defensive pace around the ball. Our ability to disrupt the flow away from lost clearances was really a highlight for me because it was something we failed at miserably last year and didn’t seem to have fixed last week.
Watched second half. Don’t have a lengthy post in me but… McGrath got put on ball late in the third and changed the game. He, parish and hepp (with hepp the defender )was probably our most convincing centre square set up but we only saw it about 3 times in a 5 minutes patch. More please
My take on game. Only watched second half last night, watched first half sunday.
Smith will add heaps to our midfield, probably best player of pre season for us.
Merrett is very underrated in his tackling ability, he caused a few turnovers some resulting in goals.
Mcgrath looked good in the middle.
Stringer looks dangerous resting up forward, i would be hapy for a 50/50 split mid and fwd while he builds endurance. Most impressed by his gut running goal in the third qtr.
Forwardline didnt really click just yet. Green gave away a heap of frees, but was really good in the second half.
I thought LONG was very good when he came on.
Wouldnt be against giving him a try if fantasia cant get up for rd 1 > begley.
Thought hurley shut hawkins down once move made. Had no idea about some of the frees. Like Hawkins one 50m off play to give cats a chance to win game.
?? Might have looked that way. 2 frees against for the whole game. Should have been a 3rd which the umps missed but the MRP picked up on.
Green probably should have kicked 3 in the last quarter. Instead he kicked 1.2 and had one drop short.
I think Hawkins got an armchair ride. Ambrose was stiff on at least 2 of those free I reckon. He didn’t do anything that Rance doesn’t routinely get away with or anything that our forwards are routinely subjected too. One of the obvious ones that should have been paid to Stewart for a shot 30 out straight in front instead went down the other end for a goal to them.
Frankly there 6 goal to two third quarter could easily have been a 4 goal to 3 quarter but for the maggots going 13-1 on us.
You couldn’t say the same of the last. If anything we probably should have kick seven or eight. 5.8 to 1.1 and a miss, we absolutely smashed them in the last. The game was only close due to the intervention of the umps in the third.
Some good posts in the last few… thanks for sharing your insights.
I was really disappointed that Green fluffed his set shot. He is supposed to be very accurate in front of goal, but we haven’t really seen it in the red and black. We desperately need him to be reliable from the set shot.
Begley was again pretty good when he got the ball. But I do worry about his ability to win one on one contests. He seems to get completely and easily beaten at times.
Hooker hasn’t really fired a shot yet during the pre-season. I think both he and Daniher have been taking it pretty easy (at least I hope that is the case).
I was really really pleased with Myers. I’m hoping he has a season right out of the box, and games like that are his poorer ones.
Bellchambers had a pretty good day out, but we didn’t have any idea how to use those periods when he was dominant.
Walla had a shocker. Tried, and tried, and tried… but the ball just would not bounce his way or stay in the field of play for him.
McKenna and Saad were well held. I’m waiting for a game where they combine to destroy the opposition. That’ll be a game worth watching.
Heppell was really good with his defensive efforts in the centre. I was really pleased to see the focus on that. Sure, the tackling method of clutching onto a blokes shirt one-handed while being dragged along behind, isn’t the most effective method. But the intent makes a difference.
Smith, Parish, McGrath, Zerrett. Is it possible that these 4, albeit small, could become a dominant midfield? There is class, and desire, and work ethic, and mongrel.
I’m not sure why there is so much angst for Hooker forward. He had a good year forward in 2017, even with some injury.
Also he is able to lock the game down a bit by rolling back as a loose intercept mark late in quarters. He did this at times, to good effect last year.
He also demands a big defender, else he will open a game up with his marking. He can also be swung back at critical times to take a forward who is getting out of control, if things get desperate.
He is a good swing man.
When talking about our defence, dont forget BJ. He is not totally geriatric, but he might as well be invisible to Blitz. Ranked our second best player against Geelong. 25 disposals at 84% 11 contested, 9 intercepts, team high score involvements, 4 stoppage clearances.
Yeah, I saw that too. There was just something about the balance of those three… It just worked.
It may not be the go-to option right now, but give it a season. McGrath and Parish are tracking exceptionally well imo.
And McGrath weaves through traffic like GAJ. Holy sh*t he’s good.
In a very short space of time we are going to have a fapping worthy elite midfield with Zerret, DP3 and McG
People always forget Heppell in these discussions. I’m not sure why
I still see lots of posts of him retiring at the end of this year.