Western Bulldogs duo Lachie Bramble and Jason Johanissen have said while their round one result was far from ideal, the group will learn lots heading into this weekend against Gold Coast.

The Bulldogs started strong against Melbourne but couldn’t arrest momentum late in the match, eventually going down by 45 points at the MCG.

“We did start well and obviously it was a bit disappointing the way we finished the game, but I thought we just didn’t defend the ground (well enough) - they were able to pick us apart with their ball movement,” Johannisen told 3AW post-game.


“Fundamentally, we weren’t as clean as we would like. There were a couple of skill execution (errors) as well.

“It’s a bit disappointing but it’s a long season - we just have to get better next week.”

Bramble echoed Johannisen’s post-match assessment.

“The boys sort of hung in there for those three quarters but we let it slip in the end which is a bit unfortunate,” Bramble told westernbulldogs.com.au.


“Credit to Melbourne – they’re a good side. We need to match it.

“We just need to be a little bit more diligent – we let them come out of the front too easy.

“There’s a lot to learn - it’s only early in the season but there’s a lot of positives to take out too.”

One of those positives was Bramble’s first performance in his new colours – managing 22 disposals, six marks, 407 metres gained and even a goal.

He was also recognised with one coaches’ vote for his efforts.

“I was quite nervous coming in – obviously you want to impress and try to hold your spot. I just loved my time out there,” he said.

“It was good fun and a good experience so I’m just trying to get in (the team) every week, gel with the guys and build that connection a little bit more.

“I really enjoyed it out there – it was nice to get on the end of one too.”