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Melbourne Football Club

VFL: Round 1 Recap


CASEY has begun season 2019 suffering a 62-point defeat against the Box Hill Hawks at Box Hill City Oval in round 1.

From the opening quarter, the reigning premiers were in complete control of the match-up leaving the Demons with a number of areas of improvement to see them return to the stellar form of 2018.

Casey showed glimpses of the game style, which was so successful in 2018, but it eluded them for most of the game, as the Hawks dominated every facet of the match.

The numbers

SCORE: Casey Demons 4.18 (42) defeated by Box Hill Hawks 15.14 (104).

DISPOSALS: C. Maynard 27, B. Stretch 20, K. Chandler 17

GOALS: K. Chandler 2, T. Smith, M. Gent

In the rooms pre-game

Head coach Jade Rawlings opted to field a young team on the park for the opening contest of the season, playing young guns Kade Chandler, James Jordon and Toby Bedford.

The young trio looked at home in the Casey blue and red, and each showed poise on the park, looking to have a solid first seasons for the Demons.


Lack of pressure, resulted in pain on the scoreboard

Box Hill opened with five goals in a blistering first quarter, and left the young Demons outfit reeling, trailing by 22 points heading into the first break.

A second quarter surge saw Casey begin to peg back the difference, but a late quarter blitz by the Hawks saw the home side break the game open, taking a five-goal lead into the main break.

Casey lacked the pressure around the ground to affect the prime movers for the Hawks. Paying for it on the scoreboard, as Box Hill added six goals to zero in a dominant third quarter.

Inaccurate kicking resulted in Casey failing to wipe away much of the massive margin, eventually losing by over 10 goals in a disappointing day.

Momentary fightback

Ramping up the intensity to begin the second quarter, the Demons showed their class, and started to cut into the Hawks lead.

Youngster Kade Chandler out duelled his opponent to boot his second goal of the match, sailing home a 40m bomb to reduce the deficit to 17 points.

But it was the lone highlight, as the Hawks quickly regained the ascendancy and put down Casey’s challenge.


Casey comes through match unscathed from injury

One positive was seeing the Casey come through the match with a clean bill of health from the playing group.

Jeff Garlett, coming back from a shoulder injury, had a few moments showing his class but was on a club-mandated restriction on his game time, finishing the game with seven disposals.

Inaccurate kicking is a concern

Despite having 22 scoring shots, Casey could only record four majors.

Rawlings credited the Hawks pressure influencing the poor shots from his team, but rued the missed chances in the opening quarter, which could have impacted the final result.

Another area to work on during the week, as Casey looks for the roadmap by to it’s scintillating form.

The standouts

Corey Maynard gave a complete four-quarter effort finishing with a game-high 28 possessions and thrusted his name into contention for selection for Melbourne’s game on Thursday night.

Billy Stretch was another to be considered for the game against Sydney at the SCG this week, sitting the opening quarter due to a minutes restriction. But made an immediate impact when he took the field in the second quarter.

Kade Chandler was the major threat infront of the goal posts, booting two goals, and showing some electrifying skills, one to watch. 

A word from the coach

“It wasn’t us out at our best … we were outplayed in every facet of the game,” Rawlings told Melbourne Media post-game.

“We spoke about our way of playing and we didn’t put that on show against one of the better teams today.”

Looking forward

Round 2 v North Melbourne @ Casey Fields – Saturday, 13 April, 2pm AEDT

Casey will have the opportunity to put the round 1 horror show behind them when the Demons face North Melbourne at Casey Fields on Saturday.

Last season Casey dominated the lone contest against North Melbourne holding the opponent goalless, the Demons will be hoping to get the win again this weekend.