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Pyke has lost Crows player group: Cornes

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28th July, 2019
5

The pressure is rising on Adelaide coach Don Pyke following four losses from his past five AFL games.

Adelaide coach Don Pyke has lost the support of his players and there are numerous other problems at the AFL club, according to Port Adelaide legend Kane Cornes.

Pyke is contracted until the end of 2021, but his position is by no means secure following another underwhelming season.

The Crows have lost four of their past five games, and will finish round 19 clinging to eighth spot with a 9-9 record.

Saturday’s 27-point loss to Carlton has heaped further pressure on Pyke.

The nature of some of Adelaide’s fadeouts this season has raised major alarm bells, and Cornes thinks Pyke has lost the support of his players.

“I don’t think they’re a happy group at Adelaide now, and you have to question whether Don Pyke has lost the player group,” Cornes told the Sunday Footy Show on Channel 9.

“He’s got until 2021 … but I don’t think that will matter in this instance (if the Crows want to axe him).

“You’ve got their player retention (issues) at Adelaide for the last five years – Charlie Cameron breaks a contract to go, Mitch McGovern breaks a contract to go. You’ve got assistant coaches breaking contracts to leave that club.

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“Josh Francou came from Sydney, back to his home state of South Australia, and a year into his contract (at Adelaide) he walks out and he’s joined Stuart Dew at Gold Coast.”

Adelaide’s cult-like pre-season camp in 2018 caused major problems at the Crows, but Cornes believes the issues run deeper than just that.

When asked where the problems have stemmed from, Cornes replied: “I don’t know. It can only be because he (Pyke) has lost the playing group.

“When you capitulate in the Showdown a few weeks ago, you capitulate against Essendon last week – there was no effort against Essendon in the second half. And then you lose against Carlton … I just think there’s a number of issues. I don’t think it’s just the camp.

“It’s not just at coaching level, it’s above coaching level at Adelaide.”

Pyke pulled a selection shock by dumping Eddie Betts for the loss to Carlton on Saturday.

Cornes also criticised Pyke’s decision to rest key defender Alex Keath.

Adelaide face St Kilda (home), West Coast (away), Collingwood (home), and the Bulldogs (away) in a tricky run home.

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