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Melbourne Football Club

Petracca overcomes hurdle for PB

At the start of last week, it was pretty tough trying to get it going
Christian Petracca

DESPITE kicking a career-best four goals against Essendon at Etihad Stadium last round, Christian Petracca says it was tough to get up for the game, after he hurt his knee against Richmond on ANZAC Day Eve.

Petracca acknowledged he pulled up “a bit sore again” after the win over the Bombers, but said the seven-day break had helped him “to get it going again” against Hawthorn at the MCG on Sunday.

“At the start of last week, it was pretty tough trying to get it going,” he told Melbourne TV.

“There was a lot of fluid, a lot of swelling and a lot of pain at the start of the week. I got a scan, which was positive and all good.

“Towards the end of last week and once I got it going, and I strapped it up, it felt pretty good during the game. I still felt a little bit of a niggle, but once you get your mind off it, it was all good.”

Despite his injury, Petracca played a pivotal role in Melbourne’s third victory of the season.

“I got a few cheap ones, thanks to Clayton Oliver and a few others,” he said.

“My main role was to make a contest and I was playing a bit on Michael Hurley and he’s an absolute gun player and I just wanted to compete against him.

“He had 16 possies in the first half and a few marks, so my third quarter was about trying to shut him down a bit, especially the fourth as well, and just make a contest really. I felt like I did that.”

In assessing the season so far, Petracca said his team had been up and down, but he was confident of what the rest of the season could bring.

“It’s been a bit inconsistent. We’ve played some great footy, but then a couple of quarters have let us down,” he said.

“This is just the journey that we’re going on, as Goody (Simon Goodwin) has reiterated.

“It’s just about riding that roller-coaster, riding those speed humps and just preparing the exact same way that we do every game and we’ll come out on top.”

Petracca, who was rated the 50th best player entering the competition this year by media great Mike Sheahan, said it was humbling to be rated that high, although he didn’t agree.

“It’s a pretty good compliment, but I’ve only played 20 games and I don’t really care about individual accolades – it’s all about the team,” he said.

“I’m just happy to be playing footy. I’m enjoying it so much and having so much fun, especially down in the forward line.

“The team is bonding so well and I’m just happy to be playing.”