15/04/2024

Adam Kingsley at day one of GWS pre-season (Image: GWS Giants)

Monday was the return to training for the GWS Giants year 1-4 players, however, that didn’t stop experienced players such as Toby Greene, Josh Kelly and Brayden Preuss from getting in to impress the new coach.

It was Adam Kingsley’s first session in charge after a turbulent off-season that saw the departure of favourite sons and seems to have set the Giants up for a ground-up rebuild. With a complete overhaul of the coaching panel and four picks inside the top 20 of next week’s draft, 2023 will be a fresh look for GWS off the back of Leon Cameron’s tenure.

Kingsley has already identified the game plan that the Giants will take into next season, he wants to see an increased running capacity and high-energy style of play that attracts fans to the ground. Last season their average attendance was only 9219, their lowest ever aside from the COVID-affected 2020 and 2021.

“We want to play a faster brand of footy,” Kingsley said.

“We have a lot of guys who naturally have a lot of speed and can run, we just need to continue developing that.

“We want to play an exciting brand of footy that’s going to bring the supporters, make them enjoy watching the Giants play.

“That’s certainly my plan at this stage.”

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Kingsley is looking forward to molding a new midfield after the key departures of Tim Taranto and Jacob Hopper. He wouldn’t give away any names that might slip into the midfield but remained confident that he’s pleased with the available bodies.

“I feel like the demographic of our group is such that we have a lot of really experienced players still here,” he said.

“We have a lot of developing players who can potentially fill roles available, hopefully, they’ll be able to train their way into a spot over the summer.

“It’s not really about replacing names at the moment, we’ll just keep an eye on it over the pre-season.”

After making a major play at the number one pick during the AFL Trade Period, Kingsley didn’t give much away when asked about who they’d target with the coveted selection. But had a glowing review of Key Forward Aaron Cadman when prompted by the media.

“He’s [Aaron Cadman] certainly in the mix, he’s a very good player,” Kingsley said.

“We love the way he plays, but there’s a number of good players at the top end that we need to work our way through.”

Prompted by the draft conversation, Kingsley was happy to address the struggles that interstate clubs deal with when selecting Victorian talent at the drafts. The homesick factor was on full display in the latest trade period, the Giants themselves losing Tanner Bruhn and former number one pick Jason Horne-Francis departing the Kangaroos after just one season.

“There are challenges no question, but the reality is we can complain about it or we can just deal with it and move forward. And that’s what we’re choosing to do,” he said.

“We’ll continue to work on the culture and build the connections as we go.

“We have a great draft hand, we need to turn it into really good players who will be long term players for the Giants.”

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