Autopsy RND 18: Done by the Demons

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Norm Smith Medallist
Apr 23, 2016
AFL Club
this is an assumption, but I get the feeling the players don’t take game day seriously enough or get too nervous and distracted by the game plan and messing up, rather than just playing their natural game hand in hand.
This has happened in the past with other teams, Collingwood a few years ago was notable for looking confused.

It can be an over-coaching thing; players with too much in their heads that they're constantly having to think about what they're supposed to do next, and not just doing it.

This can turn fairly quickly, from memory Collingwood turned it around in one off-season, and Richmond have been building year on year so that players instinctively know what they're supposed to do and where they're supposed to be. Hawthorn have had that too for a long time, but have simply run out of talent to execute it.

It's that thing where for years the Hawks looked like they were taking a dump kick to nowhere in the F50 and somehow there was always a Hawthorn player there to mark the ball. It was just coaching that they would always hit that spot (35m out, directly in front-ish) and their players would know that was where a ball was likely to be going.

Smart players pick this up quicker obviously, someone like Snelling looks solid because he's picked up what the coaches are wanting him to do for example, whereas some of our more talented players seem to struggle with this side. Langford is another one who has long looked a bit... slow. But now seems to have worked out what he's meant to be doing and is starting to see the benefits.

Tipungwuti trying to handball off to Mosquito was peak player confusion; coaches have told them to share the ball around to bring their teammates in to it (a good thing) but they're so confused about when and where to do it that we make it look a shambles (a bad thing).

We've also had quite a few moments where we've gone handball, handball, then instead of taking the kick that's there, or a long lateral handball, we handball again in tight and run ourselves in to trouble.

Watch the Hawthorn game first half to second half to see the night and day difference of players executing the handball game correctly; handball, handball, long lateral handball to a running McGrath or Shiel and we're out.


Brownlow Medallist
Jun 11, 2007
AFL Club
Other Teams
Tottenham, Bayern, Milan, Celtic
one thing that has been a common theme and we need to get it out of our game.
When a decision takes momentum away from us (see Tracc non-HTB call), we drop our heads and go into a bit of a sulk mode.

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