Pracky Match – Carl vs Haw FEB2019

Written by Schwarzwalder on February 22 2019

(Written & Created By Ben)


Seven Things I Learnt From The Carlton vs Hawthorn Practice Match

Yesterday, I rocked up at Ikon park to watch my beloved Blues take on the Hawks in a practice match. Although we got smashed,and we were missing half of our team, I feel there is still a lot we can takeaway from the match. However, before we all go reading too much into this, just remember it’s one practice match, so take most of this with a grain of salt.

So without further ado, here’s 7 things I learned by attending the Carlton v Hawthorn practice match.

1. When sitting on the wing of a ground, make sure you pick the correct wing:

I’ll start with this one as a bit of a preface for the rest ofthe write-up, but for the first time in forever I had the opportunity to sit on a wing while watching AFL level footy, and boy was that a mistake. Although I was able to see what was happening in both forward 50’s fairly well, most of the action happened on the opposite wing to me, meaning it was incredibly hard to tell who had the ball most of the time, so unfortunately I can’t really report on possession numbers, time spent on ball etc.

2. James Worpel is a genuine breakout contender:

James Worpel ($395,700)really blew me away, his attack on the ball and poise when in traffic were outstanding, and it seems as if he is going to be Jaeger’s partner in crime inthe middle. He got a lot of the ball, most of it contested, and disposed of it well. Continue to watch how he goes in JLT though, as Carlton’s midfield lacked real size without Cripps, and apart from Murph and occasionally Gibbons, there would not have been a midfielder playing for Carlton older than 21, so watch how he does against more mature and experienced midfield units.

3. Sam Walsh is the real deal:

Wow. I was so impressed by Sam Walsh ($207,300) yesterday, he was best on for Carlton by a mile. He is all class, with only one mistake which was made late in the 4th when he made a poor kick to the opposition. He got a lot of the ball and made the most of it when he used it, disposing very cleanly, and he was patient and made the right decision every time. Is he worth the price tag? The Carlton fan in me says “Yes, oh my god yes, lock him in, 10-time Brownlow winner in the making!” yet the Supercoach player in me says, “Maybe? Possibly? Wait for JLT?”

4. I picked the wrong breakout player in my Carlton season preview:

I stuffed up guys. I said in my Carlton preview that the two breakout candidates for Carlton this season are Paddy Dow ($323,500), and Zac Fisher ($392,800). Now Fisher didn’t play, so I might not be wrong with himyet, but I think I went a year or two early with Dow. He was good, but didn’t scream “pick me”. However, there was a young player who did put his hand upyesterday and say, “Hey mate, I’m gonna be really, really good this year,” and that man is Sam Petrevski-Seton($364,900). He played mostly mid and a little forward, but like Walsh, he got alot of the ball, and when he did, he used it very, very clearly, highlighted by a beautiful delivery to McKay on the lead with his opposite boot. He is someoneI can see getting quite a lot of mid time this year and should improve to be a fantasticoutside runner. Does this translate to Supercoach scoring though? Again, watch for him in JLT.

6. Hawthorn have some good rookies that are firming for a Rd 1 start:

Hawthorn showed off their famous next man up mentality yesterday, as two of their VFL stars played vital roles in their game plan. James Cousins ($219,900) played pureinside mid yesterday and played well enough to push for a round 1 selection. Heaveraged 25 disposals, 6 clearances and 5 tackles in the VFL last year, and hisform should translate to AFL level. DylanMoore ($123,000) impressed me quite a lot yesterday. He played purely forward and attacked the ball hard and disposed clean. He also can sniff out asnag or two, kicking a few goals in the match. Also pushing hard for Rd 1.

5. 6x6x6 is useless:

6x6x6 is inconsequential. Within seconds of the ball being bounced, Sicily got loose, players rushed the ball, and it was instantly congested. We were still seeing the full-back in the centre circle when the ball was in the forward 50. Don’t pick or write off players based on the new6x6x6 rules, it won’t matter at all.

6. The new kick-in rules are not useless:

This practice match was eye-opening to me as it showcased the two philosophies that teams could take with the new kick-in rules. Hawthorn had a dedicated player in Sicily to kick it in, and he played on every time, with the ball landing mostly on one of the wings. Meanwhile, Carlton had 4 dedicated kick-in players (Simpson, Plowman, Newman, Thomas) and just had whoever was closest take the kick-in. This tells me that if you’re picking a player based on the new kick-in rules (Lloyd, Hurn, Ryan etc.) watch closely in JLT to see if theirteam adapts the former playstyle, rather than the latter.

So there you go, 7 things I learned from attending the practicematch. If there’s any other questions you want me to answer about the match,ask away!

** Ben on Twitter:@BenSCT1 **


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11 thoughts on “Pracky Match – Carl vs Haw FEB2019”

  1. Great work, Ben.

    Regarding no. 1, did you sit at ground level or higher up? I always sit in an upper level, which gives me a top-down view that is perfect for analysis, although the extra distance can make it harder to identify players (a commentary radio or printed teamsheet are lifesavers here).

    Just on no. 6, it’s not quite the case that Carlton is letting whoever is closest take the kick-ins – several times I saw them wait for their preferred kicker to take it, when there were closer players who could have done it. It looks like it’s more the case that there is a larger group of designated kickers who are allowed to take it, rather than just the one.


  2. Sicily has said himself in an article that he will be swapping with gunston and will play both forward and defence this season. He was my D1 and locked since day 1 but am now reconsidering after reading what i did!
    Tread carefully my friends


    1. Indeed. I don’t have the stats handy right now, but his average was A LOT lower back when he used to play as a forward.

      Gunston, on the other hand, seems to be able to post a respectable average no matter where he plays. He almost never misses games, too (unlike a certain other Hawk!).


    1. As a late-ish pick in Draft, definitely. In classic, I’m treating him as a watch-and-act: if he explodes over the first few rounds, I’ll look to bring him in.


  3. TLDR: on a windy day the kick’in rule doesn’t have much effect.

    In regards to the new kick in rule, I went to Pies V Giants AFLW game and there was a strong wind to one end of the ground.

    There was very few kick ins with the wind because so few points got scored that end.

    And when the fullback kicked in from the scoring end they’d short pass out of the square because they were kicking into the wind.



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