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Small Pies, big trouble for Swans


Michael Gleeson and Andrew Wu

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Footy Fix: Indigenous Round preview

Rohan Connolly previews the AFL's Indigenous Round, including the blockbuster Dreamtime at the 'G clash between Richmond and Essendon.

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Collingwood will again have to make do without defender Heath Shaw for the clash - suspended last week, Shaw now has a hamstring injury.

Shaw complained of soreness in his hamstring tendon after the Fremantle game, in which he incurred a one-match suspension for striking forward Hayden Ballantyne. The club has now opted to safeguard against further injury by leaving Shaw out of the clash with reigning premier Sydney.

The Magpies made only one change, with young midfielder Josh Thomas left out for Marty Clarke to return from illness. Thomas, too, had suffered soreness after last week's win over Geelong but then trained well on Thursday and is expected to play VFL this week.

Andrew Krakouer.

Andrew Krakouer. Photo: Getty Images

The Magpies have persisted with two ruckmen, with Jarrod Witts holding his place in the side alongside No. 1 ruck Darren Jolly in a move designed to stretch the short Swans defence with Lewis Roberts-Thomson out and reliable backman Marty Mattner again forced to miss through a hip injury.

Krakouer, who kicked three goals last week, said he was still recovering fitness after returning to the club for the pre-season unfit.

''I came back a bit underdone and I needed to get a bit of continuity in my training and there is still a bit of work to be done,'' he said.

''But I am back to full training now, I'm out there playing and getting my match fitness up so it's a long season so I've just got to keep ticking the boxes, I suppose.''

Krakouer said Collingwood has rediscovered team-wide intensity in the victory over the Cats.

''I think our attitude towards the game changed, our attitude to making sure we do the little things right. I think our pressure was really good, and I think that's what got us into the game, rather than the week before against Fremantle, our pressure was pretty much non-existent and we only played two quarters,'' Krakouer said.

''But we came out last week and surprised Geelong and didn't let them play their game. We really pressured them as much as we could, then turned it over and got them the other way.''

Krakouer and his fellow small forwards Jamie Elliott and Sam Dwyer can expect close attention.

Swans defender Ted Richards said they would be closed down. ''These guys aren't getting the respect they deserve because Collingwood have so many big names,'' Richards told the club's website.

''We've been doing a lot of homework on these guys, some of whom are averaging two to three goals per week so they are really important.''

The Pies' decision to play the two genuine rucks is also an acknowledgement that the Swans play to true rucks, with Shane Mumford and Mike Pyke handling the ruck duties and pressing forward.

The Swans are struggling with their efficiency, ranked 17th for percentage of scores from entries inside their forward 50. They are above only the Western Bulldogs. Last year they were ninth in this area.

The Swans dropped forward Tommy Walsh for youngster Jed Lamb in their only change at selection.

3 comments so far

  • I think the approach taken by Collingwood is far superior to Essendon's "Whatever it takes attitude". Oh how Robson must be regretting he signed on to mantra.

    Anyhow back to Collingwood. It is easy to see why they are being admired almost universally at the minute. Standing by some of their people who have fallen on hard times (Krakouer, Williams, Didak, spring to mind) rather than cast them aside like putrified meat.

    Not resorting to the evil temptations of the tank, but rather looking for gold nuggets in the low levels of the draft (read Maxwell, Toovey, O'Brien to name a few), replacing moderate performers with slight upgrades (eg Dawes by Q Stick, Wellingham by Young).

    Offering their hand in friendship to their on field adversaries (Western Welfare, the Demons & North Melbourne) spring to mind despite many at those clubs at various times paying scant respect to the Collingwood Football Club and its people.

    Tonight is the AFL lovechild in Sydney. Whilst Collingwood will be up against the $1M pay cheque disadvantage, you can rest assured that Collingwood supporters will be treated to nothing less than 100% from their players (although Darren Jolly might do some whingeing in Mondays paper if things don't go his way)

    Go Collingwood

    Date and time
    May 24, 2013, 3:31PM
    • i actually didn't mind reading your piece until you brought up the "$1M pay cheque disadvantage" which clearly shows you have no idea what you're talking about. it's also a bit rich when you barrack for the most financially secure club in the league. quit your whinging and up the bloods!

      Date and time
      May 24, 2013, 7:54PM
    • I was right - Darren Jolly is whingeing. Please send him to Geelong or North Melbourne. He would fit in perfectly with the Scott's

      Date and time
      May 29, 2013, 7:27AM

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