Tigers add to Dockers’ miserable week

By Michael Ramsey, Michael Ramsey is a Roar Guru

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    Fremantle’s miserable week has continued with a 77-point thrashing from Richmond at the MCG despite a heroic effort from skipper Nat Fyfe.

    Held to just one goal during a dismal first half on Sunday, the Dockers dominated the third quarter but were steamrolled late on the way to a 15.20 (110) to 4.9 (33) defeat.

    A bullocking Fyfe had 33 disposals, 12 clearances and even contributed in the ruck with seven hitouts but had far too little support with Lachie Neale (35 disposals) the only other major contributor as Fremantle posted their lowest MCG score.

    The victory extended Richmond’s winning streak at the MCG to 13 games and secured the reigning premiers’ spot on top of the AFL ladder.

    Richmond lost skipper Trent Cotchin before the game to a lingering knee injury, while fellow onballer Dion Prestia succumbed to a calf issue during the third quarter.

    The Dockers trailed by 44 points at halftime but surged to life after the break, cutting the margin to 25 points and becoming the first team since Greater Western Sydney in round 18 last year to hold the Tigers goalless in a quarter.

    But the AFL’s best fourth-quarter team stayed true to form, closing out the game with eight unanswered goals to improve their record to six wins and one loss.

    Fremantle’s fourth defeat for the season capped off a week dominated by a sexual harassment scandal involving coach Ross Lyon.

    Lyon allegedly made an inappropriate comment to a junior staff member several years ago at the club’s Christmas function.

    It’s been reported the alleged victim had been paid a five-figure amount, as part of a settlement, and that a non-disclosure agreement had been signed.

    Regardless of whether the off-field issues affected the Dockers, their first half was woeful.

    The Dockers laid just four tackles during the first quarter – an equal-low for any team in a quarter this season and the lowest ever under a Lyon-coached side.

    In contrast, the Tigers had 23 tackles for the quarter shared among 14 players.

    Kane Lambert (25 disposals, two goals) and defender Dylan Grimes were among Richmond’s best, while Dustin Martin was prolific but booted 0.4.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (77)

    • May 6th 2018 @ 4:50pm
      13th Man said | May 6th 2018 @ 4:50pm | ! Report

      Well that was rubbish! Firstly Tigers are awesome and deserve to be premiership favourites but the reality is, and some on this site don’t realise, we are an average football side and always will be an average side under Ross Lyon! You cannot win a football game if you can’t score goals! It’s that simple. Our set up today was a disgrace, granted, Walters and Taberner were missing but still the forward line was completely toothless. McCarthy is a third forward at best, not the main man, Brennan Cox is a backman and Ballantyne is just simply a spud.
      Nat Fyfe was awesome today but got absolutely no support whatsoever, Sandi for all his dominance in the ruck was completely inneffective and poor Fyfe had to even ruck at some stage!
      We were lucky Richmond were innacurate and we didn’t lose by 150 because we had 21 passengers today and took a massive step backwards. Those who think we will make the 8, get real, we are still a bog average side and always will be until Lyon is sacked but sadly we are stuck with him for another two years. We’ve beaten Gold Coast, Essendon and the Bulldogs, hardly anything to write home about.
      Ballantyne needs to be dropped asap for next week as does Hughes. Give Strnadica and North a run, might as well play all our young kids like Carlton, at least the Blues and Lions realise they are in a rebuild and are going about it the right way. Lyon is still too deluded to realise that we need to be committing to a full scale rebuild.

      • May 6th 2018 @ 11:39pm
        Don Freo said | May 6th 2018 @ 11:39pm | ! Report

        Sandi ineffective? He set up a 42 to 22 clearance differential against the comp’s best side. Nankervis is no mug but he couldn’t compete against Sandi.

        We got the ball fine, just had no one to kick it to. Without Tabs and Walters and without Brad Hill to feed it in, we just broke down and the defense was overwhelmed by the flood of rebound.

        Ballas was definitely not our worst. Loved Cox going forward. The third quarter just shows what is possible as the kids get a greater sense of on field urgency…an awareness of immediacy.

        They have now played 3 of the top 5 so they have had some good lessons. They will turn at least 7-5 by the break.

        • May 7th 2018 @ 12:43am
          13th Man said | May 7th 2018 @ 12:43am | ! Report

          Ballaz was barely sighted again, I don’t understand what you see in him to be honest. He doesn’t get involved much in the play and his pressure which once got him an All Australian Guernsey is now non-existent. Ok he occasionally bobs up and kicks a pretty goal but for a lot of the game when he’s out there its like we are playing with a man down.
          Cox can take a mark and I hope they stick with him, would like to see them give Strnadica a go as well, kicked another 3 in the WAFL and did well in the ruck, by all accounts a real natural footballer despite being a bit raw. Today highlighted the need for some targets up front. Tabs is proving to be a big loss as is Walters, however that cannot be an excuse for how poor we were today for 3 quarters.
          For next week i’d make 3 changes
          Ballaz to Strnadica (will never happen but should)
          Hughes (was very poor) to Nyhuis
          Crowden (needs a rest) to North
          Stephen Hill should also be put on notice after his absolutely insipid performance

          • May 7th 2018 @ 2:26am
            Don Freo said | May 7th 2018 @ 2:26am | ! Report

            Ballas had the ball 14times…marked it 4 times. Did you miss all that.

            • May 7th 2018 @ 10:14am
              Jonboy said | May 7th 2018 @ 10:14am | ! Report

              Did you miss all that ? Ballantyne had his most touches in a game 14 Big Deal and you would never admit it he absolutely butchered13 of them, one he kicked 50 metres the wrong way, actually nearly kicked them a point.Dayne Zorko plays the same role and as a experienced player like Ballantyne had 34 disposals and 4 goals and averages over 20 a game. For a senior player HB highest disposal rate for the year14 you think he is a good player even Cerra who plays a similar role had 18 and more efficient disposal. Needs to be replaced by young Stefan Gito who played well for Peel and also in the JLT series

              • May 7th 2018 @ 10:29am
                Don Freo said | May 7th 2018 @ 10:29am | ! Report

                Zorko plays nothing like that role…not one bit. Cerra plays nothing like that role.

                Gito doesn’t even exist. Freo has a player called Giro but he has been injured and has played only 2 games in the WAFL. As soon as Bennell is ready, he’ll replace Ballas but his experience is essential right now. The inexperience was the reason we couldn’t stand up on Sunday.

              • May 7th 2018 @ 11:07am
                jonboy said | May 7th 2018 @ 11:07am | ! Report

                Wrong again Don….Giro Is NOT injured played for Peel Saturday 25 disposals 19 year old small highly talented forward / Mid. who is ready to go .Get him in quick !

              • May 7th 2018 @ 1:49pm
                Don Freo said | May 7th 2018 @ 1:49pm | ! Report

                Why not read the comments before you challenge them. Just so thick!

              • May 7th 2018 @ 11:05am
                13th Man said | May 7th 2018 @ 11:05am | ! Report

                Zorko actually had been playing that role up until this week where he played more midfield time for Brissie, however, it’s hard to expect Ballantyne to do the same as Zorko as one is a 24 year old superstar of the comp and the other is a 30 year old has been.

              • Roar Rookie

                May 7th 2018 @ 11:37am
                Mattician6x6 said | May 7th 2018 @ 11:37am | ! Report

                I think zorko is 27 or higher, was quite s mature recruit when Brisbane got him

            • May 7th 2018 @ 11:03am
              13th Man said | May 7th 2018 @ 11:03am | ! Report

              Probably the most he’s had in a game this year, how many of those were effective Don?

          • May 7th 2018 @ 7:37am
            Ben said | May 7th 2018 @ 7:37am | ! Report

            What I got from today’s performance was no one individual was to blame, but more that Tigers have had 5-6 years to fine tune players, game style, bodies, trust and polish against a team who have had maybe two years of a rebuild.
            Richmond play with huge confidence especially after winning the GF last year, they were on their home track, and it will take a pretty special effort to beat them in the form they are in.
            Freo had no answers to the quick and daring ball movement Tigers put out. I don’t see many teams who would. There are holes in the Freo list that will take time and development to fill and they aren’t in the position of some other teams to cover these positions quickly.
            What I hope for this team is that the coaching and management have a solid idea of what they are doing. There are games where they have shown a clear willingness to move the ball quickly and effectively through the game. Skill levels in these games look good. At this stage they don’t have the depth to cover the loss of key players like Tabernar and Walters. A mid field that was feared 3 years ago, is now mid field. The back six has great potential to develop quickly, but when the ball comes in as quickly as Tigers brought it in Sunday, that’s pretty hard to counter.
            The cover for the forwards, Strnadica, Apeness, Dixon, North, Nyhuis are are mostly coming back from injury. Strnadica is in his first season of playing in the WAFL team. I would think that the coaching team would be keen to try them out at stages this year, but to think that any of these guys would have stopped the Tigers is somewhat wishful.
            Richmond weren’t playing this style of football 3 years ago and actually missed the finals 2 years ago. Then all of a sudden the Bulldogs won it with a fast, dashing small team playing with manic pressure across the field and it clicked for the Tigers. Not so long ago the Dockers were lauded for their across the ground pressure but they didn’t have the same run when they attacked. They won plenty of games off the back of that pressure. I don’t think it’s the individual players, as much as the belief in the system and each other, to play the role they have been assigned. Every player in the AFL system has shown the talent and potential to be there. What happens after they have been selected will determine whether they will be a success. The Eagles, Hawks and Swans are a great example.
            Just to finish, the game of Nat Fyfe yesterday was one of rare talent. One ruck tap to Lachie Neale running through Polly Farmer would have been proud of. Sensational.
            Just my thoughts

            • Roar Guru

              May 7th 2018 @ 7:56am
              AdelaideDocker said | May 7th 2018 @ 7:56am | ! Report

              Very good post. Don’t have time to comment too much, but I really agree with the way you’ve articulated Freo’s contrast to a team like the Tigers.

              I feel like the losses of Tabener and Walters (and to a lesser extent B. Hill) are out-sizely (not a word, but meh) detrimental to the team, probably more so than most of us acknowledged.

              I’m not happy with the loss, but hey any team can have their moments against Richmond – Brisbane were thrashed by them a few rounds back and played sensationally yesterday.

              It ain’t the end of the world, and we’ll bounce back. The Saints next weekend at home are perfect grounds for some redemption. A big win, perhaps??

              • Roar Guru

                May 7th 2018 @ 8:21am
                Dalgety Carrington said | May 7th 2018 @ 8:21am | ! Report

                Yeah I liked that post too, uses a lot of perspective and some solid logic.

                Brisbane is an interesting case in point too. They fielded a near identical average age side against Richmond when they got belted to Freo’s yesterday (and scored even less). Carlton, meanwhile, took an older side into round 4 against North and scored less and got belted by more.

            • May 7th 2018 @ 12:13pm
              dontknowmuchaboutfootball said | May 7th 2018 @ 12:13pm | ! Report

              Excellent comment.

              Freo had no answers to the quick and daring ball movement Tigers put out.

              This statement is on the money but also hides a lot of dimensions.

              1. Freo fielded a side with five 2018 debutants, with 6 or fewer games experience, plus a 2017 debutant with less than 20 games. The one thing that ALF debutants seem consistently to comment on is that they are surprised by the pace of the game, that it is always much faster than what they’re used to from lower level competitions (even those with WAFL, SANFL and VFL experience). When you consider that Richmond play it faster than just about any other team at the moment, and add that to Freo’s youth, they were pretty much doomed.

              The pace was a big reason for Freo’s low tackle count (which the commentators couldn’t stop talking about). It’s interesting to note, for instance, that the other game this season in which Freo had a tackle count in the 40s was against Port — another team notable for its lightning fast run and transition through the corridor.

              Lyon’s line was that “we couldn’t find them”. This was a case of youth being caught out by the pace.

              2. Richmond’s contested possession strategy is also a little unconventional, and will have caught the inexperienced off-guard. Their approach seems to be to based on not taking possession, unless they’re in the clear. In contested situations, they always opt for a tap or a hit on, rather than take possession and risk a tackle and subsequent stoppage (another reason for Freo’s low tackle numbers). They do anything they can to avoid a stoppage, to keep the ball live, and they won’t like to take possession until they can see a player in the clear.

              The tap ons also have the advantage of getting the ball to their teammate quicker than taking possession and then handballing. The ball is moved on while the opposition is still trying to wrap up the player who’s moved it on. The number of times yesterday I saw Freo’s youth ball-watching in contested situations, going for the player going for the ball, rather than going for the players on the outside… And, given, Richmond’s 360 degree pressure, this was not isolated to the midfield, but all over the ground.

              Freo’s only chance yesterday was not just to control the stoppages, which they did, but also — crucially — to maintain possession going inside 50 through effective disposal to players in space. Richmond’s 360 degree pressure put paid to that. Again youth and inexperience was a factor here. Seems odd to be scapegoating Ballantyne, when he was in Freo’s top 10 for possessions, tackles, marks, kicks (and DT points) and the side’s highest scorer — and even odder to be thinking that him being replaced by an inexperienced player would have done anything but made the result far, far worse.

              • May 7th 2018 @ 12:43pm
                jonboy said | May 7th 2018 @ 12:43pm | ! Report

                Tackles
                Old Guys -S.Hill Zero
                Sandi Zero
                Mundy One
                ballantyne Two
                New Guys
                Cerra Six
                Brayshaw Six – Banfield Two- Crowden Two
                Gives you a indication who is Slow and who is more committed .The young ones were not ”Doomed” at all

              • Roar Guru

                May 7th 2018 @ 12:57pm
                AdelaideDocker said | May 7th 2018 @ 12:57pm | ! Report

                @dkmaf

                Great comment, thanks for that. Thoroughly enjoyed hearing the more technical side of yesterday’s game. Not something I have a good grasp on, so cheers.

                @jonboy

                What you’re doing there is nitpicking facts to suit your argument. Ballantyne had two tackles, sure, but he also was our highest scorer. That’s always good. Sandilands had no tackles, but comfortably won hit-outs. That assisted Freo to get on top of the clearances. Tackles aren’t an indication of a bad performance, because there’s many other factors.

                Of course, seeing the younger players pick up the slack (so to speak) is encouraging, and it would be wrong to completely dismiss you. But on them being ‘doomed’, I feel as if the writing was on the wall headed into the game (especially given the major outs Freo had) and as dkmaf explains, Richmond’s game plan and their form was always going to it difficult for our boys.

              • Roar Pro

                May 7th 2018 @ 2:01pm
                anon said | May 7th 2018 @ 2:01pm | ! Report

                Sydney debuted 7 players in 2016 and made the Grand Final.

                Fremantle have a very experienced core with the best player in the league heading it up.

              • May 7th 2018 @ 5:40pm
                dontknowmuchaboutfootball said | May 7th 2018 @ 5:40pm | ! Report

                If they managed to find a way to play 2018 Richmond, that 2016 Sydney was very impressive indeed.

      • Roar Guru

        May 7th 2018 @ 12:30am
        Dalgety Carrington said | May 7th 2018 @ 12:30am | ! Report

        It’s deluded to think if you’re on a rebuild you’re not going to have days like that.

        A real headscratcher post really. Freo fielded a team that was one of the youngest out there this weekend (only the Bulldogs and Suns had younger and guess who they played) and, given how much we rely on our forward line this year to reward the effort of a young team, without two of the most important players in Walters and Taberner.

        The average age of the team was much younger than the one Carlton put out (with more u20’s and u23’s too) and younger than the Lions team as well. Add to that and they’ve turned the list over by nearly 50% since 2016 (!) and there was nearly a third of the side who wasn’t on the list last year out there today, which included 5 first-year players (just shy of a 1/4 of the team, but goes past that if you inlcude Duman as a debutant this year).

        If that’s not a full-blown rebuild…

    • Roar Rookie

      May 6th 2018 @ 5:04pm
      Mattician6x6 said | May 6th 2018 @ 5:04pm | ! Report

      When there is negative pressure on a coach it will reflect through the team.
      That said freo were going to lose today but the insipid display after last weeks energetic effort has to be scrutinized especially as Richmond were very good but far from top line today.

    • May 6th 2018 @ 5:46pm
      Jonboy said | May 6th 2018 @ 5:46pm | ! Report

      Nat Fyfe was absolutely brilliant in a a side that was flogged, how often do you see a BOG in a losing side dominate like he did. Currently way best in the competition.

    • May 6th 2018 @ 5:51pm
      Jonboy said | May 6th 2018 @ 5:51pm | ! Report

      Ross Lyon was in a big hole after round 2 last year and has been slowly trying to climb his way out…… but after this week he has fallen right back to the bottom.

      • Roar Rookie

        May 6th 2018 @ 5:54pm
        Mattician6x6 said | May 6th 2018 @ 5:54pm | ! Report

        I know some will argue, but I can’t see Ross Lyon seeing out His contract if what has come out is true jonboy.

        • May 6th 2018 @ 6:12pm
          Jonboy said | May 6th 2018 @ 6:12pm | ! Report

          Why did Ross not play Pearce up front, try something different we all know he has been playing well on tall players but he was lost playing on the small’s today. Like big Harry said about Pyke ….sat on his hands.

          • Roar Rookie

            May 6th 2018 @ 6:16pm
            Mattician6x6 said | May 6th 2018 @ 6:16pm | ! Report

            Even last week I didn’t understand isolating fyfe fwd when most fans know his set shot goal kicking is suspect

          • May 6th 2018 @ 11:41pm
            Don Freo said | May 6th 2018 @ 11:41pm | ! Report

            I said, last week, that Pearce should play forward and you ridiculed me. You keep forgetting what you say.

        • May 6th 2018 @ 7:37pm
          13th Man said | May 6th 2018 @ 7:37pm | ! Report

          If it was up to me he’d already be gone. He can’t adapt to modern football. I’d be giving Brett Kirk a call ASAP.

          • Roar Rookie

            May 6th 2018 @ 7:53pm
            Mattician6x6 said | May 6th 2018 @ 7:53pm | ! Report

            Depending how everything plays out that call could come soon.

            • Roar Guru

              May 6th 2018 @ 11:39pm
              Dalgety Carrington said | May 6th 2018 @ 11:39pm | ! Report

              Well that sounds credible. Got a podcast to reference that to? lol

              • Roar Rookie

                May 7th 2018 @ 12:39am
                Mattician6x6 said | May 7th 2018 @ 12:39am | ! Report

                We’ll see what transpires shall we. When you emerge from the gutter we might continue this further.

              • Roar Guru

                May 7th 2018 @ 7:52am
                Dalgety Carrington said | May 7th 2018 @ 7:52am | ! Report

                Haha “when [I] emerge from the gutter”? hahaha.

                Look whose feelings are stung.

              • Roar Rookie

                May 7th 2018 @ 9:48am
                Mattician6x6 said | May 7th 2018 @ 9:48am | ! Report

                Not at all, takes a lot more than that, shall I give you honours for effort?

          • Roar Guru

            May 6th 2018 @ 11:38pm
            Dalgety Carrington said | May 6th 2018 @ 11:38pm | ! Report

            Brett Kirk? You’re kidding.

            • May 7th 2018 @ 12:24am
              13th Man said | May 7th 2018 @ 12:24am | ! Report

              When Kirk was at Freo we were at our best, the year he left was the year we fell in a big heap. Would love to see him take over. Jarrad Schofield would be another good candidate. Even Suma would be better than Ross!

              • Roar Guru

                May 7th 2018 @ 7:53am
                Dalgety Carrington said | May 7th 2018 @ 7:53am | ! Report

                C’mon, that’s a pretty simplistic reading of things if ever there was one.

    • May 6th 2018 @ 5:57pm
      Jonboy said | May 6th 2018 @ 5:57pm | ! Report

      Neale 35 disposals,Langdon 22,Banfield 20and Cerra18 all gave it there best shot but the senior players were poor.

      • Roar Rookie

        May 6th 2018 @ 6:00pm
        Mattician6x6 said | May 6th 2018 @ 6:00pm | ! Report

        Problem for me is Richmond aren’t playing that amazing in this game but are running rings around freo.

      • May 6th 2018 @ 11:43pm
        Don Freo said | May 6th 2018 @ 11:43pm | ! Report

        3 senior players, Neale, Fyfe and Sandilands were our best 3. So much for that.

    • Roar Guru

      May 6th 2018 @ 6:16pm
      AdelaideDocker said | May 6th 2018 @ 6:16pm | ! Report

      Ugh.

      • May 6th 2018 @ 6:24pm
        Jonboy said | May 6th 2018 @ 6:24pm | ! Report

        Surely AD you can come up with something better?

        • Roar Guru

          May 6th 2018 @ 6:25pm
          AdelaideDocker said | May 6th 2018 @ 6:25pm | ! Report

          Nah.

        • May 6th 2018 @ 6:27pm
          Jonboy said | May 6th 2018 @ 6:27pm | ! Report

          Something please .

          • Roar Guru

            May 6th 2018 @ 6:35pm
            AdelaideDocker said | May 6th 2018 @ 6:35pm | ! Report

            Why? There’s nothing I can say that could articulate my frustration.

            Well, there is, but it wouldn’t make it past moderation.

            • May 6th 2018 @ 6:39pm
              Jonboy said | May 6th 2018 @ 6:39pm | ! Report

              Yeah 23 years of it but it is not time to give up.

              • Roar Guru

                May 6th 2018 @ 9:21pm
                AdelaideDocker said | May 6th 2018 @ 9:21pm | ! Report

                Oh shutup, I never said I’m giving up. I prefer to have plenty of optimism around Freo, but there’s nothing to say about games like this. Live and let go, I suppose.

              • May 6th 2018 @ 9:46pm
                Jonboy said | May 6th 2018 @ 9:46pm | ! Report

                AD you read it wrong, i said i am not giving up, did not mean you .

              • Roar Guru

                May 6th 2018 @ 10:07pm
                AdelaideDocker said | May 6th 2018 @ 10:07pm | ! Report

                Ha, you did too. Sorry ’bout that, just having a frustrating night.

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