Date: May 03 2012
Former No.1 draft pick Jack Watts has paid for his mediocre start to the AFL season, with Melbourne dropping him for Saturday's trip to Geelong.
Demons football manager Josh Mahoney was quoted on the club website as saying Watts would have an "opportunity with the Casey Scorpions on Saturday (in the VFL) to work hard and regain his spot in the side."
Watts, the top pick in the 2008 draft, was the only Melbourne player not to lay a tackle in last Saturday night's narrow loss to St Kilda.
The Demons are 0-5 under new coach Mark Neeld but have shown definite improvement in the last fortnight.
Watts has been under constant scrutiny since his 2009 senior debut and AFL commentators Mick Malthouse and Wayne Carey were critical of his intensity during a pre-season match earlier this year.
The demotion breaks his consecutive games streak of 42 and the tall utility has played a total of 45 AFL matches.
Saturday's clash at Simonds Stadium has plenty of meaning for Melbourne.
In the corresponding match at round 19 last year, Geelong slaughtered the Demons by 186 points and it cost coach Dean Bailey his job.
The Demons regained key players Mitch Clark and James Frawley from injury, while out-of-form defender Joel Macdonald was also dropped.
All Australian midfielder James Kelly is back for Geelong along with Mitch Brown, while Mathew Stokes (ankle) and Taylor Hunt (soreness) are out.
Essendon's injury woes continue, with key defender Tayte Pears ruled out with soreness for Saturday's Etihad Stadium match against Brisbane.
But they regained Courtenay Dempsey and Nathan Lovett-Murray from their soft-tissue injuries and also recalled Travis Colyer.
Michael Hibberd tore his hamstring on Anzac Day and newcomer Cory Dell'Olio was dropped.
Collingwood regained star defenders Ben Reid and Heath Shaw for Friday night's match at Etihad Stadium against the Western Bulldogs.
Jarryd Blair has leg soreness and Paul Seedsman was left out.
Bulldogs lost key position players Jarrad Grant (hip) and Ayce Cordy (back) but regained Daniel Giansiracusa and Ryan Hargrave.
As expected, Carlton captain Chris Judd will miss Sunday's match against expansion team Greater Western Sydney.
The Blues listed him as suffering from soreness and fellow key players Jarrad Waite (hip) and Matthew Kreuzer (knee) are also out of the side.
Out-of-form Hawthorn made three changes for Saturday night's must-win clash against St Kilda at the MCG.
Premiership player Grant Birchall, Isaac Smith and Jarrad Boumann are back, while top defender Josh Gibson has an ankle injury and Kyle Cheney and Broc McCauley were dropped.
Saints key forward Justin Koschitzke is available after suspension, but he was named as an emergency after Beau Wilkes' three goals last weekend and the forecast for continued wet weather in Melbourne.
St Kilda recalled Arryn Siposs for Dean Polo.
Fremantle named mature-age rookie Lee Spurr for Saturday's match on the Gold Coast against the Suns and recalled Dylan Roberton, while forward Jack Anthony was dropped and Nathan Fyfe is out after shoulder surgery.
Star Adelaide forward Jason Porplyzia was recalled for Saturday night's big clash against Sydney at the expense of Andy Otten and the unbeaten Swans are unchanged.
This material is subject to copyright and any unauthorised use, copying or mirroring is prohibited.
[ Canberra Times | Text-only index]