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Training report 11th December

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warburton lad 



Joined: 26 Aug 2003


PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 11:03 am
Post subject: Training report 11th DecemberReply with quote

A new day dawns and I'm excited to be heading down from the Yarra Valley to see the Collingwood boys strut their stuff. At least this week, the rains have eased and the trains from the nominal capital city of Melbourne's outer east ( Lilydale) are up and running once more. The sun shines gloriously as it formally announces its return to its rightful place in Melbourne's summer sky.

I never cease to be amazed at the loyalty and diversity of those who support our club and the lengths they go to express their love for the Black and White. As I arrive I come across two of the faithful who tell me they have followed the Pies since the 1950's. For this writer, men like these are the heart and soul of Collingwood fans. The older man, replete with a greying goatie , a light 3/4 coat and a face that belies his 72 years recounts with a pride that is patently obvious that he has been present at the MCG for each of Collingwood's last four Premierships.

A little further around near where the players emerge from the rooms, I find Lorraine. She has been here since 8-15 this morning awaiting the chance to meet and greet her heroes. Such dedication. All the players and staff seem to know and care for Lorraine who is as passionate a Pies fan as I have ever met. She seems to have a special relationship with Josh Thomas who exhibits his politeness and human decency by engaging her in a short conversation as he is the first player out of the rooms at 9-10am. Moments like these reinforce the critical importance of sporting clubs in society by allowing individuals the opportunity to make connections with others.

The smell of the freshly-clipped oval is only surpassed by the Raspberry and chocolate Oreo muffin and steaming hot chocolate that passes for breakfast this early December morn. There is only the barest of a zephyr wafting across the turf and a solitary Willy Wagtail is the only sign of movement on the pristine sward. At the first sign of human activity, it too takes flight, winging its way over the statue commemorating the fallen Ron Clarke being helped to his feet by John Landy adjacent Olympic Boulevard.

The players again are 'up' for a torrid session. It is a joy to relate that they are very eager to get down to work. Even the warm-ups, which one may expect to be fairly relaxed, see the players working very hard on their non-preferred foot or hand disposal. Langdon, whose dedication to his craft is extremely impressive, continues to elevate the quality of his disposals. His vocal support of others is always noteworthy and a credit to his 'team-first' mantra. This young man has 'future-leader' written over him in letters writ-large.

Absent from action today: Elliott ( ankle), Fasolo (shoulder) Pendlebury, Buckley, Tyler Brown, Mihocek, Sidebottom, Adams, Howe,

Today, I'm focussing on the new players, younger players and those on the periphery of our senior list. Sam McLarty continues to impress this writer- at 197cms and 91kgs, there is lots to like about him. He trains diligently and listens intently to advice from both peers and coaches. What appeals most is his willingness for body contact- there is no reluctance from McLarty when the match sim turns competitive and he uses his growing frame to impact balls in dispute.

Isaac Quaynor, Appleby and Murphy are the first 'new' players on the track and they engage in friendly banter with Reid and Crisp who look in very fine fettle. So wonderful to see Reid without a millimetre of strapping on any part of his imposing physique. For his part, the torso of Jack Crisp is looking more and more like a Salvador Dali work of art with each passing week.

There is much to like about Appleby. Although a right footer, he is very competent on the left shoe and the way he courageously attacks contests this morning has more than a hint of the Carlton great Kenny Hunter about him. Quaynor is very strong overhead and, like Appleby, displays no hesitancy off either flank in disposal by foot.

Also present today is Will Kelly, Craig Kelly's son. Wow. He is a big unit, quicker over the ground than his father and a penetrating kick. Later in the session, he will be pitted against Moore who beats him, comfortably, but there is much to like about 'Cement-head's' son. Can't wait till he is taken as a father-son!!

Brayden Sier is another stripling with hopefully a long career ahead of him. One can see even at this early stage of pre-season that his body is in far better condition for the AFL. This is a credit to Sier. He did not ask to be the youngest player in his draft year. He did not ask for the poor run of injuries that restricted his progress to date. He is, however, the heir to a number made famous by some wonderful Magpie players of years gone by: Rene Kink, Saverio Rocca and Swanny and this writer hopes he achieves the potential that our recruiters identified in him several years back!

Our other Brayden, of the Maynard variety, continues to grow, develop and shine on the track. He seems to have latched on to Pendlebury as a role-model. The younger man can often be seen pushing himself through drills, working exceptionally hard to get the best out of himself. He completes every activity at pace and his tackling continues to improve. Teammates must dread lining up against Maynard as his uncompromising approach is applied to every aspect of his craft. There are no easy kicks on this lad. Importantly, he is also continuing to develop his skills of hand and foot. His kicks scythe through the central corridor and are now hitting a much higher percentage of leading targets. As reported in previous weeks, he, like others, is also working assiduously on his non-preferred. I am convinced that Maynard will be seen in an on ball role in 2018.

Hoskin-Elliott appears poised for a very big season. His work ethic at training has been outstanding and he has clearly been working hard on the endurance. His repeat efforts have been highly commendable. One can expect that he and Sidebottom will cover both wings; each man showing the running power required for this taxing position in twenty-first century football. With 74 games under his belt and coming off a season where he produced career-high figures in disposals, marks, tackles and inside 50's, expectations are high. Hopefully, where there's a Will, there's a way.

I've not reported much on Nick Daicos recently but today I can share that he is doing phenomenally well this pre-season. No second-year blues to see here. Because of the surname, many Collingwood fans were anxious to see the number 26 play more in 2017, but, in retrospect, I believe he was managed very well. The query over leg speed appears to have been addressed and he now has developed his endurance so that he can impact on contests back-to-back. Well done Daics. And man, his skills are absolutely sublime.

Watching the new players is like watching Year 10 Media students working on their first film project. They have a developing sense of what they want to achieve; they have a high level of enthusiasm but their results are somewhat hit-and-miss. They are capable of producing 'short-stories' of considerable quality in relation to their potential but still have much to do to reach their creative zenith.

In contrast, the master, Pendlebury, is the real deal. He is the Steven Spielberg of our current list. He is looking at the same people, obstacles and conditions as the other players but appears to see a multiplicity of potential outcomes and, seemingly, always chooses the optimum scenario to play out. Here's hoping that the 2018 season sees our skipper produce and direct his finest masterpiece yet.

Once again, I encounter two more 'true believers'. Brothers Sean and Brendan ( not their real names) are familiar faces from a few years back. We have an animated chat around what we are watching unfold before our eyes. The younger brother Sean is anxious as he watches a player fumble in front of him. I reassure him that this is not uncommon for new players to take a while to settle in to the tempo expected. Sean confides in me that he was shopping at Chadstone yesterday when he ran into Tommy Langdon at the shopping megalopolis. Strangely, at this point, he produces a premiership medallion from his pocket with the words 'Trollop Shield ' engraved on it. As a non-cricket fan, this means absolutely nothing to me, but Sean eagerly shares that he is an elite batsman who has "... climbed the mountain twice as a player and drunk nectar from the premiership cup!!".

In contrast, there is no sign of hubris from his older brother. Brendan proudly wears his Metropolitan Fire Brigade tee shirt but shares little of the life and property saving work that he regularly does in the community. At first glance, Brendan could be mistaken for 1990's Magpie, forever Norwood rover, Stephen Patterson. His observations reveal an acute knowledge of the game. He shares his belief that Mason Cox will be a regular fixture and, with what the big man shows on the track this morning, it's hard to disagree with my feisty, firey friend. Cox seems to be far more adept at body-contact than he was in 2017. In this respect, Rocca's work in showing how to position the body in a contest is invaluable.

Simple folk such as these two brothers show the broad church of individuals that share our unbridled passion for the Black and Whites. May God bless them always.

As per previous weeks, the variety of drills is just that- varied. These players are well-drilled in what is required and there is a pleasing mix of contested- ball, skills under pressure, match-sim and running against the clock and endurance work. Every coach is out there advising, cajoling, supervising and this is all done under the watchful eye of head coach ( for the day) Harvey. Occasionally, Banga will take a player aside for a chat ( today sees Wells, Mayne, Phillips and Kirby amongst others engage briefly and amicably with the dual Brownlow Medallist.

Aish has both shoulders strapped, but is moving without impediment; The Ox, Goldy and Sier are in a small rehab group as training begins bang on 9-30.

Today, Treloar practises pushing-off at ball up scenarios whilst roving to Mason Cox whose palmistry is a thing to behold. In this art, he is instructed by Buddha Hocking who urges him to be aggressive and use his pace to burst clear of the stoppages. Lynch relieves Cox and there is little diminution in the quality of service to the brilliant number seven. The quality of Treloar's capacity to work off an aggressive opponent, gather cleanly and dispose of the ball with precision has 'Chas. Brownlow Medal' written all over it.

By just after ten, there are seven distinct groups in operation. Smith versus Dunn and Aish versus Broomhead makes for interesting watching. It takes all of Dunn's guile to prevent Smith from slicing him up but Smith seems to be relishing his opportunity to train as a forward and continually pushes Dunn to his defensive limits. Murphy is out bodied by Langdon but beats him on the lead several times.

In a leading drill where McLarty and Phillips must defend against Quaynor and Crocker, McLarty is given high praise and encouragement by coaches and peers for his intuitive defence of space and ability to close of leading patterns of his opponents.

Meanwhile, Callum Brown, Wells and De Goey are pushed through a punishing drill where they must move speedily through cones whilst gathering, and disposing, of the football. They show their class and resilience by completing this drill with barely a skill error. As reported a fortnight ago, Wells is a long way ahead of where he was at the same stage twelve months ago.

Goldy and Sier, now joined by Grundy, continue to do endurance work around the perimeter. This soulless task enables the players to run out games in the business end of the season and their application to task is admirable.

Moore is pitted against several opponents at the Rod Laver end of the oval and either in the air, or when the ball hits the ground, he is unstoppable. He has returned to this preseason in A Grade condition and seems determined to become the elite player we have craved for. At times like this, one wishes that Peter Moore had produced as many sons as he has Brownlows...!

After one of many breaks for hydration, the players must run from fifty metre line to the next fifty metre line to give and receive two handballs. This is truly gut-busting work and the ability to both cover the ground is crucial.

Around the outer perimeter of the oval, players must work from end to end, this time kicking. Sam Murray and Murphy each stand out for their running speed and endurance whilst Crocker, Callum Brown and Daicos hit targets at will. The groups interchange, and the more senior players are forced to kick on the non-preferred. Crisp,(considerable improvement) and Langdon are the standouts here.

Kirby appears somewhat trimmer than even a month ago; perhaps he has been on the Kale? His disposal is a treat and he can be seen pushing his body to the limit in drills.

By 10-45, Reid, Oxley, Maynard and Hoskin Elliott are walking a slow lap. They engage in friendly, good-natured banter with Hocking who appears to have introduced that vital component of any successful club or organisation, (humour), to the sessions. Rest assured our players are working very hard, but there is also an apparent joy in what they are doing. As St Thomas Aquinas once wrote, "Joy is the noblest human act". Never in all his immense body of work was the portly Italian theologian more correct.

The capacity of footballers to make space and lead to vacant areas of the ground has never been better. With no clear key power forward as such, it would appear that the 2018 Magpies will rely upon quick and incisive ball movement to creat scoring opportunities. In a drill under the shadow of the AAMI Park bubble, Kirby is imperious as he finds space with ease.

Having worked at a torrid pace, Josh Thomas is first off the track at 11-00 joined shortly thereafter by Kirby who has trained diligently.
Quaynor is a running beast with an unquenchable desire to be at the front of any, and all, running activities. In a similar vein, Treloar, Appleby and Crisp are never without a ball in hand. The latter man's skills by foot improving by the session.

Match-sim is brutal today. Players contest all over the reduced oval size, and when each scenario is played out, Hocking and the others urge those competing to 'change-gears' and get themselves back into the centre of the ground post-haste.

In the absence of Grundy, who is running lap after lap with Lynch in tow, Cox dominates the big man battles, but McLarty is not disgraced. De Goey leaves the track but there is no apparent discomfort in his gait.

By 11-35, the team have been at it for over two hours and whilst they have absconded to the other side of the oval, there is no let-up in the intensity. Scharenberg, Cox, Crocker, Smith and Daicos leave the track but Broomhead, Dunn, Mayne, Varcoe, Blair , Crisp, Hoskin- Elliott and others and continue to work hard on a drill that involves continuous running and shooting on goal. This is truly fatiguing, but the conversion rate is very high. This is followed by more kicking on the run- the remaining players on the track ( seven of them) being pushed to their collective and individual limits. By now, there are seventeen staff on the oval, two and a half per player!! The players are now teamed against each other in a game of competitive handball keepings off. The ball zips around like a pinball and whilst tackling is Luke warm, the speed of the drill is intense.

I recently had the good fortune to meet the sister of former 1970's Collingwood player John Dellamarta. She is a nun in a Catholic religious order in Melbourne's inner-north. Watching Sam Murray burst of half back flank at high speed during a drill reminds me of her brother, the flaxen-haired number 33 of four decades ago. Murray exudes great enthusiasm and he, Murphy and Tyler Brown train with an energy that is infectious within the group.

Training concludes around midday.An outstanding session of AFL preseason to be sure. We have much to look forward to in 2018.

And so I begin the journey back home. Once again I encounter the septuagenarian Magpie fans I had met earlier. Although they resemble Stadler and Waldorf from The Muppets, they are far from grumpy old men. We chat and compare notes before the younger of the two declares to his older friend, "C'mon mate. It's past time that we were off to The Royal. It's your hook ( shout), bud". A smile covers my face as I make my way to the Richmond Station; my morning's experiences reinforcing a long-held view that the diversity of our supporters is one of the most enchanting and attractive features of barracking for Collingwood.

Floreat Pica, my friends.

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MightyMagpie 



Joined: 04 Jun 2013
Location: WA

PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 11:30 am
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Thanks for the report WL. Hanging out for the first games ... even if only of the pre-season variety.
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BazBoy 



Joined: 11 Sep 2014


PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 11:33 am
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As a supporter who at tender age of 12 years and 10 months saw Louy the Lip captain us to the 1953 flag am enthralled with the finess of your report

Ohhhh those years tho almost in tears when Red Legs carved us up but the 58 lads fixed them

But to present I smell dynasty in the air folks

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K 



Joined: 09 Sep 2011


PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:11 pm
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Thanks, WLad.

There were question marks over Murphy's pace. Was anything noticeable regarding this? e.g. in one-on-one contests, did his opponent ever burst away from him, or vice versa?
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warburton lad 



Joined: 26 Aug 2003


PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:14 pm
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K wrote:
Thanks, WLad.

There were question marks over Murphy's pace. Was anything noticeable regarding this? e.g. in one-on-one contests, did his opponent ever burst away from him, or vice versa?


Take this to the bank, K- Murphy is not slow. He has quite a turn of speed and he has excellent endurance- needs a crash course on protein shakes though.

A very good pick up.

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think positive Libra

Side By Side


Joined: 30 Jun 2005
Location: somewhere

PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:15 pm
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You truly are a wordsmith, thankyou, fabulous read, cheers
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Cleomenes 



Joined: 14 Dec 2014


PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:18 pm
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Another great report. Thanks.
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RudeBoy 



Joined: 28 Nov 2005


PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:27 pm
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Thanks again Laddy.

Reading your eloquent and informative reports, fills me with confidence for what lies ahead in the coming season. Go Pies!
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BHPIE 



Joined: 02 Oct 2004
Location: Broken Hill

PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:32 pm
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Thanks for your time n effort Lad
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5 from the wing on debut 



Joined: 27 May 2016


PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:58 pm
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You didn't mention Buckley's performance.

Has there been a noticeable improvement in the way that he sets out the witches hats?
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Dave The Man Scorpio



Joined: 01 Apr 2005
Location: Someville, Victoria, Australia

PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 2:26 pm
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Quote:
I find Lorraine.


Is that the old Lady who is at Every Single Collingwood Training?

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Jezza Taurus



Joined: 05 Sep 2010
Location: Ponsford End

PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 2:49 pm
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Thank you for posting, Lad. Love reading your training reports.
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warburton lad 



Joined: 26 Aug 2003


PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 3:00 pm
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Dave The Man wrote:
Quote:
I find Lorraine.


Is that the old Lady who is at Every Single Collingwood Training?


Good afternoon Mr Dave.

Yes, Lorraine is there every session. Never misses unless sick.

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stui magpie 

suge min pikk


Joined: 03 May 2005
Location: Where ever i go, there I am

PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 3:45 pm
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Cheers for the report lad, compulsory reading.

looking ahead a little, you commented favourably on the 2 potential 2018 draftees, Kelly and Quaynor.

Kelly I believe is a key back, Quaynor more of a mid sized utility (?)

Did they participate in the match Sim? If so, where did they play and how did they go?

From what you saw, what would you describe as their strengths and areas for improvement?

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CoastPie Sagittarius



Joined: 26 Oct 2010
Location: Gold Coast

PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 3:59 pm
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Another great report, warburton lad a joy to read
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