Schache aims to be a forward beast
At 199 cm, it’s hard to think Josh Schache would fit into any sort of medium-sized clothing.
But believe or not, the 21-yearold Seymour product played out the 2018 AFL season in a mediumsized Western Bulldogs jersey.
And sitting in the dug-out at Kings Park, admiring the spring weather and freshly cut grass, Schache said he is doing everything he can while at home with his family on break to change that.
He wants to transform himself into a forward beast, a frontline wrecking machine to be feared by opposition defenders — and now having just clicked above 100 kg, he’s in the same weight division as Ben Brown, Tom Lynch, Jesse Hogan and Tom Hawkins.
‘‘Hopefully I’ll be big enough soon to crash packs — that’s the aim,’’ he said.
‘‘I’ve spent three years in the system, so it’s getting to the stage where that’s expected of me.’’
With a gruelling training schedule that involves hitting the local pool four times a week, along with gym and running work (and the occasional kick in the park with his mates) the only difficulty for Schache, now eating six times a day, is finding enough food in the pantry.
‘‘I’m still only 21 and it takes a few years, but like everyone else I just want it now,’’ he said.
‘‘I want to speed up that process to play my role and influence games as soon as possible.’’
But while this arms race is happening, Schache is desperate to maintain his running ability.
With a 14.1 beep test recorded in his draft year, Schache’s athleticism helped him feast on 34 goals in seven games at TAC Cup level and get taken by Brisbane with the number two pick in 2015.
It’s a fine balance between size and mobility he needs to manage with the club’s conditioning team, especially since power forwards traditionally take longer than the average player to fully develop.
In the meantime, Schache said Bulldogs’ forward line coach, 2006 West Coast premiership player Ash Hansen has done wonders for his craft in terms of where he needs to be and when.
‘‘Some forwards nearly run the most on the ground and these days Luke Beveridge is really big on the fact it doesn’t matter where you’re playing, if they need me down at full back, I’ve got to slide down and help out the defence,’’ he said.
‘‘So you’re pretty much playing all over the field.’’
Schache booted 17 goals in 13 games this season, a clear improvement on his tally of nine goals from 10 games in 2017.
But his well-documented move from the sunshine state, which was only finalised with 30 seconds remaining in the 2017 trade period, has also improved his head space.
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