New recruit Josh Bruce says the Western Bulldogs’ pre-season intensity hit a new level, in Wednesday’s match simulation session at VU Whitten Oval. 

Team White evened the ledger after their loss in Mooloolaba a fortnight ago, scoring a seven-point win over Team Blue in the four-quarter hit-out.

“It’s starting to get to the pointy end now with the games coming up next week, so it’s a pretty exciting time around the club,” Bruce told SEN1116.

“It was a big hit-out today so the boys did pretty well, four quarters.

“It definitely ramped up a little bit today.”

01:20 Mins
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Training Highlights | Match Simulation

Take a look as the boys tested themselves today in this match simulation training session.

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The key forward spent time inside 50 alongside fellow talls Josh Schache and Aaron Naughton, as the trio continue to build their chemistry after Naughton’s return from a knee injury.

“We played with the three talls today, with Schache and Naughts,” Bruce said.

“We chop and change, play a little bit higher, a little bit deeper… it’s pretty flexible these days with the key forward position.

“I think I’ll be playing a pretty similar role to the last couple of years, that strong contest player, whether that’s up the ground or deep doesn’t faze me too much.”

How the Bulldogs stack-up for their first proper hit-out of 2020 – next week Friday against North Melbourne at Marvel Stadium in their first 2020 Marsh Community Series match – remains to be seen.

But with almost 40 AFL-listed players on the track today, there’s plenty of competition for spots.

Bruce says the Marsh Series hit-outs will carry plenty of weight looking ahead to round one.

“First and foremost, you want your best team playing, you want to be playing some good footy and you don’t want anyone to get injured,” he said.

“These days they’re pretty much a full dress rehearsal.

“It’s really important that you start to find the right mix with your side and you go from there to round one.”