Young cubs start to shine

Credit- richmondfc.com.au

It wasn’t the result Richmond was looking for on Sunday as it took on a red-hot Collingwood side at Punt Road.

In the end, the score was 48-32 in Collingwood’s favour but Richmond played one of its best games since it entered the competition.  

There were a few standouts for the Tigers with number one draft pick Ellie McKenzie finishing the game with 12 disposals and two goals.

McKenzie was moved up forward and after kicking her first goal the momentum started to shift Richmond’s way.

Richmond coach Ryan Ferguson praised McKenzie’s efforts post-game.

“Ellie gave us a real hot crack early, she’s such a workhorse she could almost be a little more efficient with her work,” he said.

“She ran herself in the ground a little bit and that s why tried to get her some forward time we know she can impact as a forward, obviously she is really good in the midfield too.

“We are trying to find that balance between what is good for the team and what’s good for her. “

Cross-coder Tessa Lavey starred in her debut game, finishing the game with 15 disposals.

Not only was this Lavey’s first game at AFLW level but one of her first games of Aussie Rules altogether.

“Tessa gave us exactly what we hoped for, still quite raw in football but we knew she was going to give us run, good work rate, energy,” Ferguson said.

“She’s a high-level athlete and she’s learnt a lot over her basketball career obviously.

“I though she played off instinct and what she knows so far and will continue to build her game.

“She gave us a bit of class there to set up our first goal, her work rate and energy was infectious across the team, I thought she gave us a lot.”

It was a great game to watch, from a Richmond perspective one of the best four-quarter performances to date, a massive improvement from its first game in round one last season.

“I think our consistency has definitely improved,” Ferguson said.

“I know we are playing really good teams and we are taking it up to them in patches we’re not taking moments they are.

“We’re learning a lot. We aren’t riding the emotions, the highs, and the lows but just focusing on what we need to do and focusing on our game and growing our game.

“I thought we overdid it at times early with our shape handball and trying to be a little bit creative with the ball and obviously wanted to score more.

“As the game wore on, I felt like we got that balance a bit better and we were able to create some nice attacking plays and disrupt Collingwood’s defence and get through.

“That’s a big step forward actually having the penetration and excitement to get through a team and generate chances and making sure we are taking them.

“Lots of improvement today wasn’t a celebration it wasn’t a win, we got beaten but it was another step in the right direction and we take a hell lot out of it.”

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