‘He’s becoming the complete midfielder’: Longmuir has high praise for Brayshaw

Andrew Brayshaw is currently one of the best players in the competition. (Picture: fremantlefc.com.au)

Andy Brayshaw has continued to prove himself this season becoming one of the premium midfielders of the competition but this week he will have tough opposition in Geelong.

Fremantle currently sits second in the competition only behind defending premiers Melbourne but will have their toughest game of the season this week, facing Geelong away at GMHBA Stadium. Playing down in Geelong is always a difficult task but the Dockers will be without several key players.

The Dockers will be without key forward Matt Taberner and first choice ruckman Sean Darcy. Heath Chapman and Hayden Young may come back into the team depending on if they come out of health and safety protocols on time.

“After further investigation over the last couple of days, he’s [Matt Taberner] going to miss this week with a hamstring strain,” Longmuir said.

“We’ll have to see how they [Heath Chapman and Hayden Young] go later and then we’ll have to see how they go in a session we run with them.”

With Chapman and Young not a certainty to play, other players in the squad will have to stand up and deliver.

The Dockers had an impressive win last week against Carlton winning by 35 points. The midfield of Will Brodie and Andrew Brayshaw helped control the game with 27 disposals each and forward Rory Lobb had his best performance of the year, kicking three goals.

Against a good defensive team, Lobb dominated the forward line and helped create good opportunities for the smaller forwards.

“It was good to see him hit the scoreboard and get some reward for [his] effort. What we value is a good game from our forwards versus what the outside world values. They’re two different things,” Longmuir stated.

Lloyd Meek will come back into the team this week. Photo: fremantledockers.com.au

Unfortunately, Sean Darcy will miss this week’s clash with a concussion he sustained last week. His absence provides another ruckman with a great opportunity.

Selected in 2017, Lloyd Meek will be hoping to cement his spot in the team. The Ballarat native has played three games this season averaging 11 disposals and 20 hit outs, with five of those being to advantage.

“He [Lloyd Meek] was in good form when he played for us. He has proven that he can mix it with the best at AFL level and we’ve got full confidence in him coming in and executing his role,” Longmuir said.

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One of the main areas where the Dockers will be hoping to control this week is the midfield. Consisting of players who include Will Brodie, David Mundy, and Andrew Brayshaw. They will be up against an experienced opposing midfield of Joel Selwood, Mitch Duncan and a likely returning Patrick Dangerfield.

Andrew Brayshaw has continuously put on great displays for Fremantle this year and will be hoping to continue his form in this week’s clash. The 22-year-old is currently averaging 30 disposals and six tackles and has become one of the premium players in the midfield.

Having coached him in previous seasons, Longmuir has seen him grow since he was drafted in 2017.

“We’ve seen his game go to another level. He’s a great two-way runner, he invests in both sides of the ball in offence and defence,” Longmuir said.

“He’s becoming the complete midfielder but the thing that holds him in great stead is he’s never comfortable, he’s always looking for areas to improve on.”

Geelong has won 100 of its last 113 games at GMHBA Stadium and will be hot favourites to win, but Fremantle is in great form with only one loss. The Dockers will be hoping to continue their form this week and hold on to their spot in the top four.

“I think there is some negativity around the trip to Geelong and sometimes as a playing group you can get caught up in the stuff that doesn’t actually help you to win the game,” Longmuir said.

“We’re really looking forward to the challenge.”

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