Tigers know level of threat rampant Crows pose
ADELAIDE coach Don Pyke and his Richmond counterpart Damien Hardwick agree.
Today’s clash between their unbeaten AFL clubs will hinge mostly on one thing: Richmond’s defence.
Can the Tigers, boasting the stingiest defence in the league, contain the Crows, the competition’s highest scorers?
“Defensively we have to be on our game,” Hardwick said.
“That is where it will be won or lost. And they’re probably thinking the same thing.”
Pyke is, noting how the Tigers defend differently than other AFL outfits.
“We have got to be ready to adapt ... depending on what gets presented,” he said.
“They have a very strong defensive mechanism in place.”
Many expect the fixture to provide a genuine measure as to Richmond’s improvement: are they the real deal?
“You only have to look at the way Adelaide are playing,” Hardwick said.
“They are incredibly impressive ... it’s going to be a significant task but our boys are up for it. We give ourselves every chance.”
Hardwick finds it hard to pinpoint any Crows weakness.
“You have got to have the ability to win the ball inside, because they’re very good at it,” he said.
“But you also have to spread that to an outside game, which they’re also very good at.
“We have to make sure we get enough numbers around the contest but then defensively have a good balance around the contest as well.
“If you allow them to play with speed, they’re going to hurt you, so we have to slow them down as much as we can.
“In theory it seems like a relatively simple concept.”