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Melbourne Football Club

VFL player review: elimination final

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 6: Dean Kent of Casey handballs during the 2015 VFL 1st Elimination Final  match between Essendon and the Casey Scorpions at North Port Oval, Melbourne on September 6, 2015. (Photo by Darrian Traynor/AFL Media)
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 6: Dean Kent of Casey handballs during the 2015 VFL 1st Elimination Final match between Essendon and the Casey Scorpions at North Port Oval, Melbourne on September 6, 2015. (Photo by Darrian Traynor/AFL Media)

CASEY coach Justin Plapp reviews the Melbourne-listed players who played in the VFL

Sunday, September 6, North Port Oval, 11.40am
Essendon 10.11 (71) d Casey Scorpions 7.8 (50)

“Obviously it was a disappointing way to finish the season. We made some pretty significant improvements from last year and we thought we had a team that was good enough to win the game. We started really slowly and they (Essendon) got out of the blocks and kicked 6 goals to 1 in the first quarter so we were basically playing catch up for the rest of the game. We were probably under pressure a little bit, kicking with a 3 or 4 goal wind in the last quarter but to Essendon’s credit, they defended us in a really strong manner. We struggled to get any fluency with our ball movement and ended up stifling our opportunities to have shots on goal so we sort of panicked a bit under the pressure. But to the team’s credit, they fought back really well in the second and third quarter and then just weren’t able to get the job done in the last quarter. I think they cracked in for three quarters but in the first quarter, we were left a little bit flat-footed and we weren’t ready for the contest. It was disappointing but that’s footy and the better team won on the day.” – Justin Plapp

Rohan Bail: It was a really good game for Ro. He started in the middle and got pushed to half-back as a bloke that could give us a bit of stability and ball use off half-back. He had 26 possessions, 4 tackles and he ended up rebounding from defensive-50 nine times. Rohan, through the middle stages of the game, was one of those players that really put his hand up in the team when they really needed him. It was one of the better VFL games that I’ve seen Rohan play this year so full credit to him.

Jack Fitzpatrick: Jack had 12 possessions, 4 tackles and kicked 2 goals. He started back and made some basic fundamental errors with his possessions so I had to shift him forward and he created some opportunities through some contested situations. There was a really classy goal where he picked up the ball and snapped a goal for us to get us going in the second quarter. Jack had missed 2 or 3 weeks too. In the back of the game, he was showing some signs of fatigue- he obviously lost a bit of conditioning after having a few weeks off which wasn’t a surprise.

Jayden Hunt: Jayden is another one who missed a few weeks through injury and we brought him back into the team. He ended up having 7 possessions, 3 tackles and he kicked a really clever goal under pressure from the pocket early in the game. After that, he kept trying which is a positive but just fell away. He’s another kid who’s probably shown signs of a big year and he’s missed 2 or 3 weeks. It’s really hard sometimes to come into a team as a young fella when you’re missing training and missing a few games but there have been some positive signs with him this year.

Mark Jamar: Mark had 9 possessions, 4 tackles and 64 hit-outs. He clearly dominated the middle of the ground and the stoppages with first hands but Russian probably just can’t cover the ground as much as some of the younger ruckmen do. A couple of times, he got caught out where he couldn’t close his opponent down but he certainly made up for it in the stoppages and centre bounces. He ended up taking about 3 marks on the day so we’d probably have liked a little bit more output around the ground. He’s maintained a really strong attitude being back at Casey and he’s been a wonderful asset for us.

Matt Jones: Matt was also one of our other midfielders on the day. He had 27 possessions, 5 tackles and 9 clearances. He won a lot of the ball but there were a couple of situations where he just needed to be stronger over the footy. He got pushed off the ball a couple of times in critical situations but he certainly gave us some offensive work that created some offensive chains. He was another one who played his role on the day.

Dean Kent: Dean was another one who had plenty of the ball – 22 possessions, 7 tackles and he went inside-50 seven times. We probably didn’t get the value that we needed out of his possessions. He gives a lot of intensity around the contest but we just didn’t get much value from him. He’s missed a lot of football and I know he’s been building the past 3-4 weeks, so he got back and played a role but it was probably a disappointing performance for him to finish off the year.

Max King: Max had a really quiet first half. He had 15 disposals, 9 marks, 3 of which were contested, and 2 tackles. Throughout the middle stages of the game, he was super around the ground with some of his contested marking and really created a contest off the back of launching the footy. Max has made some terrific inroads this year and I think he finished the year off really well which should give him some real confidence. He is improving and he’s going to be a better player with another summer in him.

Jordie McKenzie: Jordie was one of our better players on the day. He had 32 possessions, 5 effective tackles and 4 clearances. He played a midfield role for us and it was a typical Jordie McKenzie day where he just creates opportunities through his contested work. His critical contest was good and he was one that could certainly walk away feeling good about his efforts on the weekend.

Aidan Riley: Aidan was probably one of our other better players. He played a midfield role again and had 31 possessions, 22 of which were contested. He also had 12 tackles and 16 clearances. On the day, Aidan was a real focal point in the middle of the ground with his contested work and with what he brings to the team in regards to the engine room and getting first opportunity on the ball. He was a real workhorse and was another player who played his role and played at the level and the effort that was required.

AFL Victoria Development League
Sunday, September 6, North Port Oval, 2.40pm
Casey Scorpions 10.8 (68) d Coburg 17.9 (111)

No Melbourne-listed players featured in the Development League