Great postI headed down to training this morning. This will probably be my only opportunity for me to attend training this year due to work commitments, but thankfully I seem to have picked a great day to go. With temperatures pleasantly sitting between 18-20 degrees, conditions were perfect for training and the boys had a spring in their step.
The session was predominantly match simulation. There were good numbers on the track. The only players I did not spot were Beams, Varcoe and Langdon. Broomhead was there but was not training apart from the odd kick to kick on the sidelines with trainers.
I arrived at 9:20am and the boys were already well into their warm ups. Phillips and Noble were not present at this stage, but appeared a bit later and were in the rehab group with Appleby, Tohill, Dunn and Greenwood. Appleby ran most laps with young Reef McGinnes. Dunn and Greenwood pushed hard with their running and both look a million dollars to be honest.
Stephenson did about an hour of really solid running as he builds himself back up but didn’t participate in any other training. He looked pretty fit though and was running at full pace.
There did not seem to be any concerns either with Phillips or Noble. Both did a lot of running, and then both even participated in the final quarter of match simulation, and were both prominent in it as well.
I was also pleased to see all of De Goey, Moore, Elliott and Reid all participating in full training and looking really fit.
After initial warm ups, the boys broke up into 2 teams, a white and black team. The first half of the session is what I would call tailored match simulation. Buckley would basically dictate a scenario and let it play out. Once he’d seen enough, he’d put a stop to that passage and the players would be made to run the entire length of the ground to the other end to change the situation up.
One thing that stood out was that WHE was playing across half back and absolutely dominated. There was barely a passage of play that didn’t involve him. Sier and Wills were also very strong throughout, while De Goey looked really powerful playing at full forward. Darcy Moore looked sharp across half back.
At regular intervals, the boys were also made to line up in the centre, sprint to the goal square and then run half a lap around the boundary to the wing. They would then be given a 1 minute break before more match play.
After about 30-45 minutes of this tailored match simulation, a more proper match commenced. Both the tailored match sim and full match sim were adjudicated by what I believe were AFL umpires.
WHE went back to a more familiar half forward role and continued to impress.
It was interesting to note that the White team had what I believe to be the fringe key forwards but the first choice key defenders. The white team forward line consisted of Kelly, Reid and Cameron, but had Darcy Moore and Roughead down back. De Goey played forward for the white team, with regular intervals in the guts as well.
The black team on the other hand had Mason Cox and Mihocek up forward matched up against Moore and Roughead. The defence however was the 2nd choice defence with Scharenberg, Murphy and Keane. Crisp, Maynard and Howe were also on the black team. Both Scharenberg and Murphy struggled with Reid, who was the dominant forward of the game. Up the other end, Roughead had a nightmare containing Cox and Mihocek, both who kicked a number of goals and took some good grabs. At one point, Cox actually held his weight against Roughead and protected the drop of the ball to take a one handed grab. Cox also did some amazing things at ground level, and at one stage crumbed a ball and snapped from 35 metres out to kick a goal.
In the middle, the black team had Pendlebury, Sidebottom and Sier largely matched up against Wills, Adams and De Goey. The Wills and De Goey combination was the dominant force in my opinion. Sier continued to be really prominent, while Pendlebury and Sidebottom were everywhere around the ground. Jack Crisp from my eye was the highest possession getter. He is a lot fitter than this time last year where he was barely training. At the end of each quarter, the boys were again made to line up in the middle, run to the goal square and the run a half lap all at pace.
I noticed Buckley spent a bit of time talking to Will Kelly. I was keen to take a look at him today and I can see some of the hype. He is a good height and is really fit. He covers the ground well. He is still lean, but toned. He spent a lot of time rotating with Ben Reid in match sim, but at one stage Bucks yelled out to him asking why he had come off and said “You don’t need a break.” This meant that he, Reid and Cameron all occupied the forward line at the one time, with the latter 2 also doing ruck work at times. Again, I re-iterate that Reid was dominant.
De Goey, WHE, Daicos and IQ sat out the last quarter of the match sim. At the end of the last quarter, I had to head off for work. Training had already gone for over 2 hours by this stage. The boys were just breaking up into smaller groups for some keepings off drills. De Goey re-joined the boys for this so obviously no issues there. Not sure how much longer they trained after that…but it couldn’t have been long as it was a super intense session.
Individual Player Notes:
Stephenson – Slowly building up. A lot of running done today at a good pace. Hasn’t put on any weight, which is understandable given the Glandular Fever. He’ll be close come round 1.
De Goey – Sat out the last quarter of match sim, but did everything else. I left at the end of the match sim but the boys went into a keepings off game, which De Goey came back to participate in. He is in good spirits and worked hard today. Rotated between midfield and on the ball. Just about got his hands to it every time there was a stoppage he was involved in.
Quaynor – Did the full session. Not super prominent in match sim, but when involved he didn’t waste it. Good to see him back in full training.
Grundy – Looks good. Clearly the dominant player in the ruck, but also spent a lot of time forward which let Cameron go up against Cox. Not overly prominent around the ground, but shaping up nicely for the new season. Big day for him today!
Elliott – One of the highlights. Really prominent in match play for the black team, and also started a few centre bounces on the ball where he got involved.
Tyler Brown – Played a fair bit of the wing and drifted in and out of match play. Still really lean, but I thought he ran out the session well and got more involved as the game wore on. Covers the ground well, and when he has it he just has an aura about him because he is such a smooth mover.
Treloar – Really prominent in match sim and looking ready for a big season
Langdon – Not sighted
Cameron – Did a full session, but didn’t do the run throughs at the end of each quarter. Spent his time between ruck and forward. Looked good in the ruck but didn’t get much of it as a forward. Dropped a sitter as well at one point. But I am impressed with his athleticism and how he moves. I’ll be watching with interest. Had a fair bit of strapping on his calf, which might explain why he didn’t do all the running.
Pendlebury – Was really good in match sim and looking as fit as ever
Beams – Unsighted
Scharenberg – Copped an accidental bump to the nose in warm up which had him a bit dazed but recovered. Had his work cut out on him against Reid at times and also Kelly. Looking fit but needs to do more to reclaim his spot.
Adams – Took part in everything early, but sat out the start of match sim and got some work done on him by a trainer. Then did some run throughs, and eventually re-joined for the full match sim. Not sure if there was an issue, but moved well during match sim.
Noble – Rehab group for most of the session but participated in the last quarter of match sim and was prominent. No apparent injury I could tell.
Dunn – Worked his butt off all session and looked to be having a lot of fun. Didn’t stop running all session. I wouldn’t say he is doing anything overly testing in terms of lateral movement, but he is doing much more than just running in straight lines and moving completely freely.
Mayne – Typically prominent on a wing without doing anything spectacular.
Cal Brown – Sat out a lot of the match sim but played the last quarter. Probably just some management.
Greenwood – Similar to Dunn, he worked his backside off all session. Really pushed hard with his running. Not doing any sharp lateral movement, but is running around kicking the footy freely and turning with no difficulty. Has no strapping, and has clearly put in a lot of work in the off-season physically. You wouldn’t think he is too far off to be honest.
Reid – Looking super fit and was dominant during match sim. Kicked a few goals, outpointed both Scharenberg and Murphy a number of times, and also went into the ruck where he won a bit of the ball around the ground. Led strongly. Did a full session with little break.
Phillips – As per Noble, did most of the session in rehab but played the last quarter of match sim and was prominent.
Sidebottom – Everywhere in match sim.
Roughead – Had a tough session with Mihocek and Cox getting a lot of the ball and kicking goals on him. Came back a bit in the last quarter where he took some nice marks.
JT – Got involved in match sim and looking in good nick.
Crisp – BOG for match sim and looking in great form.
Daicos – Sat out the last quarter of match sim but did everything else. Not overly prominent, but did one or two really nice things that made you take notice. Will need to get more involved to push into the side though.
Kelly – Didn’t dominate, but did kick a nice goal in general play and lead well. Looks a prospect.
Murphy – Beaten one on one against Reid on numerous occasions, but was handy offensively. Did the full session.
Broomhead – Mostly watched on. Didn’t participate in any training.
Moore – Most prominent in the tailored match sim, where he was everywhere. But a bit rusty by foot. Got through the full session and looking fit.
Appleby – Just did some run throughs but not much else.
WHE – Really good session playing firstly back and then forward. Seemed to be where the ball was most of the time and used it well. Looks in better nick than this time last year.
Wills – Probably the most influential midfielder from stoppages and looks to me to have improved from last year. Seems to really be throwing his weight around in stoppages where he wins nearly every one and seems more involved offensively. Going to be hard to dislodge from this side. He has no hesitation taking on a tackler and getting his hands free. He can be getting tackled but he just stands up in the tackle, takes his time and finds an option.
Bianco – Probably the most prominent of the newbies in match sim. Definitely classy with ball in hand, playing off half back.
Rantall – Didn’t get a lot of it, but made a few good tackles. You can definitely tell he is a class above when it comes to work rate and aerobic capacity. Really pushes hard. Had one prominent piece of play where he started on the ball with De Goey and Wills. Cameron won the hitout, De Goey got it at ground level flushed it out to Wills, who passed it to Rantall, who burst out of the centre and hit his target on the chest. A bit to be excited about there.
Sier – Along with Wills, the dominant force around stoppages. Fitter than he has ever been, and ran the session out strongly. A good solid full session from Sier.
Maynard – Played well during match sim and looks to be in good shape again.
Howe – Looks to be in really good shape and was strong during match sim. He is another who is in much better shape than this time last year where he was barely training from his corkie.
Ruscoe – Quiet in match sim but participated in the full session.
Atu – Actually played pretty well in match sim and kicked a nice goal. Did the full session.
Mihocek – Started both the tailored match sim and full match sim really well. Kicking for goal let him down a bit as he could have snared 4 or 5. On one occasion he took a nice mark on the boundary, went to wheel around and snap and kicked it into the man on the mark. But later he kicked a nice goal on the boundary so round off a good session from him. Looks to be a much more dangerous player when Cox is there as well.
Keane – Gets a fair bit of it at half back and looks a prospect.
Magden – Played full back with the white team and was really good. He was reading the play really well and chopping off most leads, as well as taking intercept marks and then using it well.
Lynch – Rucked against Grundy for large parts and was beaten for most hitouts. Getting to learn from the best though so this should hold him in good stead.
Cox – Another highlight for me. He was terrific and was a presence all over the field. Looks to be ready to prove some doubters wrong this year.
Tohill – Only did some running. Did not look in any discomfort so maybe just on a modified program. I was surprised how tall and athletic he is.
Wilson – Played the entire match sim on the wing. Couldn’t get himself involved though and perhaps looked a bit off the pace at times. He has all the attributes though, and this is his first pre-season. Plenty to work with. Participated in the full session.
Awesome Jen love all the updates/pics, do you know this coming weeks training times as I’ve got the week off and would love to take my kids along to a session. Thanks in advance!View attachment 807755View attachment 807757View attachment 807758View attachment 807761View attachment 807762View attachment 807765View attachment 807766View attachment 807767
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The bottom picture are of the new VFL boys. Onlookers call the one on the far right as the Beams lookalike but without tatts.
I posted a picture of Shaz, to show how thin he now looks. I barely recognized him originally.
Mon, wed and Friday. Start time between 9:30-9:45Awesome Jen love all the updates/pics, do you know this coming weeks training times as I’ve got the week off and would love to take my kids along to a session. Thanks in advance!