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Five takeaways: Beveridge press conference

Press Conference | Luke Beveridge (Rd13) Luke Beveridge spoke to the media ahead of Round 13 against Port Adelaide.

Western Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge spoke to the media on Wednesday ahead of his side’s match against Port Adelaide on Thursday night. Here, take a look at some of the key takeaways.

1. What we learnt from last time

With thunder and rain again forecast for Adelaide tomorrow night ahead of the clash against the Power, Beveridge talked about what he learnt from the last time the Dogs were in the City of Churches.

“We learnt a bit from the Adelaide Crows experience in that we probably did a few things wrong.  One of the quite basic things that I think Richmond (did well) in their recent match, was that handling the ball cleanly and being able to possess it straight away and play the territory game, if you don't handle it cleanly, you don't spend enough time over it, and then whatever you want to do with the footy goes out the window.

“We'll learn off playing in the wet a few weeks ago, we'll have quite a different make-up going into this game again, because of injury once again, so it's a chance to perform with a different mix again.”


2. Confirmed change

Beveridge also confirmed that there will be at least one change, with Zaine Cordy returning after missing time with concussion.

“As far as personnel goes - there's some considerations there based on how they set up and how we went in last time.

“Naughts, we're going to give him another week.  He's just been a little bit sore in the quad, so young player, so we'll give him another week off.  And Zaine will come in.”


3. Update on Dale Morris

Dale Morris’ luckless run with injuries this season continued, with the veteran going in for surgery yesterday.  Beveridge provided an update on how long the 35-year-old is expected to be out.

“The good news is he had some surgery yesterday and the prognosis is pretty positive, they just had to trim up and repair a bit of that medial meniscus, that cartilage area.  The forecast is that he shouldn't be out for any longer than three weeks we wouldn't think, so that's great.

“Quite often if there's a lot of damage they do have to go in and do something a bit more long term but he’ll hopefully be available again soon.

“This is fresh, it had nothing to do with the partial ACL tear, it's something we didn't see coming.  He's had some bad luck, particularly over the last few weeks.”


4. Shaun Burgoyne

Beveridge offered a tribute to the Hawthorn/Port Adelaide great who lines up for his 350th this weekend.

“I was obviously fortunate enough to work with Shaun, he did play in the backline when I was coaching during the three-year period I was there.  That's the thing.  We'd have him there for half the game and then Clarko (Alastair Clarkson) would want him in the midfield or forward or somewhere else to fill a hole or win the game.

“He's been such an impact player and I think that's a legacy that'll be difficult to replace, where he's a player that influences the outcomes of games in a very short period of time. And he's still doing that at his age and with all that experience.

“He's going to be remembered as one of the greats.”


5. State of the game

The state of AFL football has been a hot topic in the last week, but Beveridge today argued for caution rather than dramatic change.

“It's a difficult one to debate dramatic change because our game is so pure and obviously there's some talking points around congestion and scoring at the moment. 

“There's some quite cosmetic changes we can make, like balling the ball up a bit quicker, which means you don't nominate ruckman, it's the team's obligation to make sure they've only got one up if we want to maintain the one-up rule.

“There's things currently in the game through the broadcast and the umpires not moving the game on quick enough that encourage and entice congestion.  There will always be times when there's a lot of numbers in certain areas but I think we make the cosmetic changes and see how it affects us, let's not be too dramatic.”