Player Watch #20: Nick 'Souva' Larkey - 2018 Frosty Miller Medalist with 41 goals

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marklovesbeer

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I like your confidence. I'm just hoping he gets a crack every now and then.
I definitely ain’t backing him.
Just noticed the spelling. Slow week.

LDU May be a shot if he gets a run of games. He’s equal 3rd favourite at 11-1.
 

Kimbo

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http://www.nmfc.com.au/news/2019-02-07/norths-forward-thinking

North’s forward thinking

Mitchell Jones
Feb 7, 2019 4:53PM





While much of the attention this pre-season has been on the countless midfield combinations on offer for North Melbourne in 2019, perhaps it’s the forward setup that looms as even more intriguing.

The retirement of Jarrad Waite has created a vacancy in-front of goal, and as match simulations heat up and the JLT Community Series fastly approaches, there are a bevy of candidates putting their hands up to fill his shoes.

Coaches have been given the opportunity to test a variety of new look structures, such as seeing 2018 VFL leading goalkicker Nick Larkey in a more prominent role.

“Nick has continued to impress throughout the pre-season,” Brad Scott told North Media during match simulation.

“This is the first time that we’ve seen Nick alongside Ben Brown, so that could potentially be a pleasing combination for us.”

A defender by trade, Declan Watson is also on track to transition into a forward role, spending much of the summer learning the tricks of the trade inside forward 50.

Although his skill set is still relatively raw, the 20-year-old, returning from a ruptured ACL, is making good progress according to Scott.

“He (Watson) has really impressed so far this pre-season, playing a different role,” he said.

“Die hard North fans would know that he missed last season after a knee reconstruction, but we’ve tried him forward and he’s looked really lively.

“He gets on the end of the ball well, he leads up at the ball well and he has really strong hands.

“He’s showed some really good signs.”

After a horror run with injuries last season, Taylor Garner is slowly increasing his training loads, and has looked ominous in the match simulations this year.

Garner was a stand-out performer in 2017, playing 18 games and proving that he can have a significant impact as a dynamic forward.

“Taylor Garner has done what we’ve seen him do a lot in the past when he’s actually been out on the field,” Scott said.

“Our biggest challenge clearly is to get him out there on a regular basis.

“We’re well and truly aware what he’s capable of, and he showed a lot of really good signs in match simulation, but clearly our focus for him is on continuity.

“We’d love to have him for 22 plus games.”

The likes of Aaron Hall, Jy Simpkin, Kayne Turner are also likely to spend time inside forward 50 this year, potentially with midfielders Ben Cunnington and Shaun Higgins.

“It’s really important, particularly with how the game’s going to played this year, that we have really good connections between our midfielders and our mid-forwards,” Scott added.

“It’s important to have that flexibility for guys to chop and change roles.

“We think we’ve been able to improve our midfield depth throughout the pre-season and we’re going to have a variety of players playing a bit more forward potentially than they have in the past because of that depth, in order to get everyone into that team.

“We’re yet to work out what it’s going to look like, but the great thing for me and the rest of the coaching staff is that we have depth and choices through that part of the ground.”
 

Horizons_00

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http://www.nmfc.com.au/news/2019-02-07/norths-forward-thinking

North’s forward thinking

Mitchell Jones
Feb 7, 2019 4:53PM





While much of the attention this pre-season has been on the countless midfield combinations on offer for North Melbourne in 2019, perhaps it’s the forward setup that looms as even more intriguing.

The retirement of Jarrad Waite has created a vacancy in-front of goal, and as match simulations heat up and the JLT Community Series fastly approaches, there are a bevy of candidates putting their hands up to fill his shoes.

Coaches have been given the opportunity to test a variety of new look structures, such as seeing 2018 VFL leading goalkicker Nick Larkey in a more prominent role.

“Nick has continued to impress throughout the pre-season,” Brad Scott told North Media during match simulation.

“This is the first time that we’ve seen Nick alongside Ben Brown, so that could potentially be a pleasing combination for us.”

A defender by trade, Declan Watson is also on track to transition into a forward role, spending much of the summer learning the tricks of the trade inside forward 50.

Although his skill set is still relatively raw, the 20-year-old, returning from a ruptured ACL, is making good progress according to Scott.

“He (Watson) has really impressed so far this pre-season, playing a different role,” he said.

“Die hard North fans would know that he missed last season after a knee reconstruction, but we’ve tried him forward and he’s looked really lively.

“He gets on the end of the ball well, he leads up at the ball well and he has really strong hands.

“He’s showed some really good signs.”

After a horror run with injuries last season, Taylor Garner is slowly increasing his training loads, and has looked ominous in the match simulations this year.

Garner was a stand-out performer in 2017, playing 18 games and proving that he can have a significant impact as a dynamic forward.

“Taylor Garner has done what we’ve seen him do a lot in the past when he’s actually been out on the field,” Scott said.

“Our biggest challenge clearly is to get him out there on a regular basis.

“We’re well and truly aware what he’s capable of, and he showed a lot of really good signs in match simulation, but clearly our focus for him is on continuity.

“We’d love to have him for 22 plus games.”

The likes of Aaron Hall, Jy Simpkin, Kayne Turner are also likely to spend time inside forward 50 this year, potentially with midfielders Ben Cunnington and Shaun Higgins.

“It’s really important, particularly with how the game’s going to played this year, that we have really good connections between our midfielders and our mid-forwards,” Scott added.

“It’s important to have that flexibility for guys to chop and change roles.

“We think we’ve been able to improve our midfield depth throughout the pre-season and we’re going to have a variety of players playing a bit more forward potentially than they have in the past because of that depth, in order to get everyone into that team.

“We’re yet to work out what it’s going to look like, but the great thing for me and the rest of the coaching staff is that we have depth and choices through that part of the ground.”
Larkey > Watson

Larkey has proven himself in the VFL and probably deserves a crack in the best 22
 

Tas

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There can be only one...
Watson is coverage for Wood.
Any medium tall really; Wood, Ziebell, Garner.

Even though he has been promising over the pre-season, you would imagine Larkey would get first crack. If Watson can start very strongly in the VFL he could come in if some people aren't delivering... well, in theory. For a while last year Brad was actually making timely changes when players weren't in form but it didn't last.
 

Kangaroos4eva

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Any medium tall really; Wood, Ziebell, Garner.

Even though he has been promising over the pre-season, you would imagine Larkey would get first crack. If Watson can start very strongly in the VFL he could come in if some people aren't delivering... well, in theory. For a while last year Brad was actually making timely changes when players weren't in form but it didn't last.
True, although I see Wood and Watson as different types to our other medium forwards as slightly taller stronger marking traditional KPF types. Ziebell plays as an undersized kpf and has the capacity to play midfield, Garner is a classical HF medium, Zurhaar is a power forward/less floggy Stringer type of HF, Atley is a fast not super strong HF and Walker is a winger rotating through HF.
 

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Tas

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True, although I see Wood and Watson as different types to our other medium forwards as slightly taller stronger marking traditional KPF types. Ziebell plays as an undersized kpf and has the capacity to play midfield, Garner is a classical HF medium, Zurhaar is a power forward/less floggy Stringer type of HF, Atley is a fast not super strong HF and Walker is a winger rotating through HF.
Wood and Watson are different types. The concern is about Wood's ability to stay on the park.

Wood averaged 1.7 goals per game and 0.4 assists, if he can play all 22 games that would equate to 37.4 goals and 8.8 assists, he can probably do better than that but I think we would be happy with that.

Ziebell last year kicked 35 goals and had 13 assists
Brown kicked 61 goals and had 15 assists
Atley kicked 16 goals and had 14 assists
Waite kicked 32 goals and had 8 assists from 13 games
Simpkin kicked 12 goals and had 15 assists
Turner kicked 8 goals and had 7 assists

We are primarily concerned about filling in Waite's role.

I still think we will field a strong forward line, Turner might find he gets pushed out of the side due to his lack of scoreboard impact.

At present my starting forward 50 looks like:

FF: Ziebell Brown Simpkin
HF: Atley Larkey Wood

However, the half forward line could easily be Atley/Wood/Garner instead. We also have Thomas and Scott who will play this year I would imagine.
 

Kangaroos4eva

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Wood and Watson are different types. The concern is about Wood's ability to stay on the park.

Wood averaged 1.7 goals per game and 0.4 assists, if he can play all 22 games that would equate to 37.4 goals and 8.8 assists, he can probably do better than that but I think we would be happy with that.

Ziebell last year kicked 35 goals and had 13 assists
Brown kicked 61 goals and had 15 assists
Atley kicked 16 goals and had 14 assists
Waite kicked 32 goals and had 8 assists from 13 games
Simpkin kicked 12 goals and had 15 assists
Turner kicked 8 goals and had 7 assists

We are primarily concerned about filling in Waite's role.

I still think we will field a strong forward line, Turner might find he gets pushed out of the side due to his lack of scoreboard impact.

At present my starting forward 50 looks like:

FF: Ziebell Brown Simpkin
HF: Atley Larkey Wood

However, the half forward line could easily be Atley/Wood/Garner instead. We also have Thomas and Scott who will play this year I would imagine.
A lot depends on pre-season form. By the sounds of it, Larkey is having the better of the duals with McKay at this stage.

Atley is next after Turner, he goes missing for too long for such an important role. If Garner remains fit, Atley may find himself in the twos mighty quick.
 

Kimbo

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A lot depends on pre-season form. By the sounds of it, Larkey is having the better of the duals with McKay at this stage.
That can't be right. Souva doesn't have the weight yet, and BMac (Mk 2) is a monster. ;)

If Garner remains fit, Atley may find himself in the twos mighty quick.
After stopping, propping, kicking sideways and running into himself or a team mate into trouble.

edit: Apologies, that was Atley the backman.
 

Kangaroos4eva

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That can't be right. Souva doesn't have the weight yet, and BMac (Mk 2) is a monster. ;)


After stopping, propping, kicking sideways and running into himself or a team mate into trouble.

edit: Apologies, that was Atley the backman.
True, but Larkey has excellent forward smarts and guile to not get into direct contested one on one situations.
 

Snake_Baker

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True, but Larkey has excellent forward smarts and guile to not get into direct contested one on one situations.
We realistically have to see the quality of our inside 50's before we can analyse Nicks present usefulness at AFL level this season.

He's still light and suspect to pressuring from maturer bodied defenders if the ball isn't coming in well.

The quality of the mids will determine his 2019 AFL season.
 

Kimbo

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True, but Larkey has excellent forward smarts and guile to not get into direct contested one on one situations.
That was kind of my point K4e. Having the bulk isn't the only way he makes a mark. Let's face it, BBB's strength isn't body-on-body work, it's when he gets on a lead (and yes, the reach matters too.)
 

Kangaroos4eva

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That was kind of my point K4e. Having the bulk isn't the only way he makes a mark. Let's face it, BBB's strength isn't body-on-body work, it's when he gets on a lead (and yes, the reach matters too.)
I knew it was, I just thought I'll just indulge you a bit more and go a bit further with your original point.

We realistically have to see the quality of our inside 50's before we can analyse Nicks present usefulness at AFL level this season.

He's still light and suspect to pressuring from maturer bodied defenders if the ball isn't coming in well.

The quality of the mids will determine his 2019 AFL season.
Spot on and guessing by how much Browny has had to improve his contested marking in the last few years, I would say that Souva has a way to go yet.
 

Snake_Baker

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Spot on and guessing by how much Browny has had to improve his contested marking in the last few years, I would say that Souva has a way to go yet.
I'm still very bullish about the kid, I just want to see another 5kgs of muscle on him. No hurry with this one.
 

Tas

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I'm still very bullish about the kid, I just want to see another 5kgs of muscle on him. No hurry with this one.
A lot will depend on his speed/mobility for the short-term. He is a bit light but has a similar height to weight ratio of players like Gunston and Wood who don't really rely on contested marking. Last year, Gunston took 125 marks, only 17 were contested. Wood took 51 marks, 11 contested. He wont give us what Waite did, but if we play Larkey and teams double/triple team Brown and Nick goes on hard leads then he has the potential to do as much damage as Waite did. I think he has the capability to pick up the odd goal here and there and will have the odd day out when matchup/tactics favour him as a target.

He probably doesn't have that kind of speed/agility but I think his main role would be to keep his man off Brown, if defenders are sagging off to get in Brown's way it is when you want to see the other forwards become more dangerous, I think they wont want to be leaving Larkey on his own. It is going to come down to if we make good decisions in the middle to hit targets in the clear or if we just launch to Brown at every opportunity. Our midfield for 2019 is a bit of an unknown to some degree.
 
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spurs

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A lot depends on pre-season form. By the sounds of it, Larkey is having the better of the duals with McKay at this stage.

Atley is next after Turner, he goes missing for too long for such an important role. If Garner remains fit, Atley may find himself in the twos mighty quick.
Atley- Turner
 

roos_fanatic08

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I get the feeling that Larkey is going to get every opportunity in the JLT to make CHF/FF his own.

I think the coaching stuff really want another genuine tall to support Larkey.

They recognise that Wood is going to struggle when playing on keyposition defenders much like Ziebell (although much less so).

If Larkey plays and commands the 2nd key position defender then it really frees up Wood & Ziebell. Those guys will dominate a 3rd/4th tall.
 

DesertRoo

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I get the feeling that Larkey is going to get every opportunity in the JLT to make CHF/FF his own.

I think the coaching stuff really want another genuine tall to support Larkey.

They recognise that Wood is going to struggle when playing on keyposition defenders much like Ziebell (although much less so).

If Larkey plays and commands the 2nd key position defender then it really frees up Wood & Ziebell. Those guys will dominate a 3rd/4th tall.
I like this move, even if he plays the decoy drew role and hopefully bobs up and kicks a few goals. the fact, he draw another tall away from the forward line could prove invaluable.
 

roos_fanatic08

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I like this move, even if he plays the decoy drew role and hopefully bobs up and kicks a few goals. the fact, he draw another tall away from the forward line could prove invaluable.
The forward line was so much more potent last year when we had that 2nd key forward in Waite. Allowed Wood & Ziebell a bit more free reign.

Larkey is obviously not going to replace Waite’s output, but the benefits of having him (as the extra tall) in the side could be 3-fold. These benefits are assuming he can have a bit of scoreboard and aerial impact:

- Makes it less likely that Brown gets double & triple teamed

- Frees up Ziebell & Wood to play on lesser opponents making them more dangerous.

- Gives us another tall, marking option.

If Larkey could contribute 20 goals and take the focus a wee bit off Brown while freeing up Ziebell/Wood it would go a long way to us pushing the top end of the 8.
 
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