Assistant coach Adam Kingsley speaks to Matthew Richardson about the Round 18 win over Brisbane in the latest edition of Coaches' Corner.
Current vibe at the footy club
"(Everyone's) pretty good. We know when we're playing this week so it's easier this week, but it's just moving forward (not knowing) what the plan is...But the boys are just getting on with what they can control and that is training well and preparing themselves to play."
Round 18 win over Brisbane
"It was a great win. The way we've performed over the last month, we've been building, we've been training well, but it's one thing training well, you've then got to take it out onto the playing field. We hadn't been able to do that prior to the Brisbane game, but to get back to the Richmond way in terms of the way we played, the way we moved the ball, the surge forward, the work rate, the run. Having 'Nank' back in was really important around those contested ball-type situations. Lambert on the outside proved to be really valuable also, and we had some players who really got to work on the outside which was nice."
Setting the tone with 22 tackles in the first quarter
"It's been something that we've valued for a long time now, our ability to apply pressure onto the opposition. And unfortunately in some key moments towards the end of the games over the last month, we haven't been able to maintain that...Brisbane in Round 10 (v Richmond) really dominated the game in that area, the contest, the pressure, the tackle...So, it was important for us to really set the scene and get it on our terms, and we felt like we were able to sustain that for the whole game which was really pleasing."
Adjustments made in the second quarter to regain ascendancy
"We were getting a little bit dominated through that second quarter with not only the clearances, but (Brisbane's) ability to get some good territory and some distance off those clearances. So, we restructured our stoppages and our centre bounce to change it up on the inside, (and) around the contest to get a bit more balance and block their avenues of exit...Once we got onto the outside we were able to play our way. The midfielders did a really good job after half-time at being able to minimise Brisbane's clearances and win the ball ourselves and get it going forward. We know how important that initial possession to get the ball forward, to then try and set up a front-half game, is for us, and we were able to do that really well in the second half."
Daniel Rioli's success in his new role down back
"That's the by-product and the opportunity you have when you do have some injuries to that back six group. They've been a really stable group for a long time now, but you take out Vlastuin, Broad, Balta and Houli and you've got to bring four new guys in. Stack, Garthwaite, Mansell and Rioli all replaced those guys and they're taking their opportunities. I think Daniel's performances over the last fortnight have been encouraging. He's got a great blend of being able to attack and try and use the ball and get the ball, but also to defend. To be able to defend (Brisbane's) Charlie Cameron deep in the goal square one-on-one is a really good effort for a guy who's never really done it before. He had a few of those occasions and did really well, we're really proud...He often sits down during the week with Bachar Houli to either preview the game or review his game and Bachar's been really good for both Daniel and Sydney Stack."
Ryan Garthwaite's return to AFL level
"We've been really proud of his last fortnight. He's played a lot of the VFL season as a key forward, so we were trying to change up his position, a little bit like what we did with Daniel, to find an avenue for him into the team. (After) a few key injuries to backs both in the AFL and the VFL, with Ben Miller going down, 'Garthy' gets his chance again. He just competes. He's great to watch and is always fighting and trying to nullify his opponent but also help out his teammates...His off-field stuff is really important too."
Rhyan Mansell's defensive efforts
"He does have a crack defensively...He's got a really nice blend at the moment of being able to attack but also defend. He's got a little bit of 'Shorty' (Jayden Short) about him in that he can run and carry and really penetrate with his kick. He has a nice kick and he's starting to find a bit more of the ball. We're quite pleased with how our backs are going and how they've slotted in...There are going to be some difficult decisions towards the end of the season...They're really working hard and trying to cement their spots which is great."
Jayden Short back at his best
"His ability to run and break the lines with both running and bouncing, but also the length of his kick, is really important to our back six. He's been in reasonable form, probably not at the same level as last year when he won our Best and Fairest, but he's still been really serviceable for us and he was really good against Brisbane last Friday night."
This Sunday's challenge against Geelong
"It's a massive challenge and a challenge all over the ground. They've got a lot of good players, a really strong system, and they all understand the system and execute their roles within it really well...They play a particular brand that at times, if you're not switched on, it's really difficult to stop. They're really strong in the contest and they've got a lot of big-bodied midfielders who fight through tackles. If our pressure is slightly below what it normally is, which it was in Round 8, we get found out on the outside a little bit with their ball use...A big responsibility this week (for) all of our players to put enormous pressure on any Geelong player with the ball and being able to defend really strongly and take away their uncontested marks are going to be the keys to the game."