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Brayshaw's round one push

Callum Twomey  March 28, 2015 6:27 PM

Angus Brayshaw poses for a photograph during the Melbourne Demons portrait session at the MCG, Melbourne on January 29, 2015. (Photo: Adam Trafford/AFL Media)

Angus Brayshaw poses for a photograph during the Melbourne Demons portrait session at the MCG, Melbourne on January 29, 2015. (Photo: Adam Trafford/AFL Media)

MELBOURNE will consider blooding Angus Brayshaw in round one after the midfielder continued his push for a senior debut with another strong performance in the VFL.

A contingent of Demons officials, including senior assistant coach Simon Goodwin, development coach Brendan McCartney and football manager Josh Mahoney, watched on as Brayshaw gathered 26 disposals for the Casey Scorpions in their practice match loss to Williamstown.

The 19-year-old also booted the Scorpions' first goal in the opening term after smothering an opponent's kick and then running it into goal, before snapping his second major out of a clearance in the third term.

Brayshaw didn't feature in the club's NAB Challenge series after a couple of heavy head knocks during match practice, but with three VFL games under his belt, the Demons will consider him for their line-up to take on Gold Coast next Saturday at the MCG.

"We were happy Angus continued his form that he's had the last couple of weeks with Casey. He again played another strong game through the midfield and also kicked some goals in a good contribution," Mahoney said.

"The positive signs at the moment is there will be some interesting decisions at match committee this week with a number of guys who have been in good form and Angus will certainly be one of those guys in the squad and in the discussions."

Mahoney said the club was confident its No.3 pick at last year's NAB AFL Draft had enough match conditioning to contend for a round-one spot against the Suns.

"It was important that he played this weekend so that he made sure that he was [not] going to be not selected due to [a lack of] match practice," Mahoney said.

"He's now played three full games and it will be a decision for match committee to make based on our team balance and whether he plays round one or not."

Classy midfielder Bernie Vince will also be in contention after getting out on the field for the first time this pre-season. 

An ongoing hamstring concern has kept him sidelined but he was cool in possession and collected 12 disposals as well as six tackles for the Scorpions. Vince regularly worked in tandem with Brayshaw in the midfield and around the stoppages.

Mahoney said the 29-year-old, who finished third in last year's best and fairest count in his first season after crossing from Adelaide, had gotten through the contest without any hiccups.

"Bernie was able to play about 70 per cent of today's game, which again was important and he's had a really interrupted pre-season so we thought it was important for him to play a VFL game," he said.

"He got through it well today so he'll be another one considered for this week."

Jeremy Howe, whose pre-season was also interrupted by a hamstring complaint, did not play but participated in a long training session on Friday in preparation for next week.

The leaping forward's ability to complete the bulk of pre-season before the setback leaves him in a better position than Vince to be picked next week.

"In the end the decision we made with Jeremy was for him to get through a really hard training session yesterday which he did and he pulled up really well," Mahoney said.

"We have another training session on Monday where he'll work hard again and all things going well he will again be considered for this week.

"Prior to his injury in January he did every session leading up to that, so he's got a fair bit of work behind him."

Second-year player Jay Kennedy-Harris was the standout of the other Melbourne-listed players in the contest at Casey Fields, kicking two lively goals from 17 disposals and providing plenty of run through the wing.  

Viv Michie had 21 disposals and four marks, rookie Aaron vandenBerg gathered 15 disposals and Dean Kent had 17 disposals in a solid display.