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  1. #1
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    Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

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    DROPPED Bulldog Tom Liberatore isn't as "physically prepared" as he was last year and might be suffering something of a premiership hangover, Dogs coach Luke Beveridge has revealed.

    Beveridge said Liberatore's demotion to the VFL was partly due to him becoming merely a stoppage player who didn't get involved enough in other aspects of the game.

    However, the Western Bulldogs coach hoped the omission would act as a "circuit-breaker" for the 25-year-old, and suggested that a strong showing in Footscray's VFL game against Geelong at Whitten Oval on Saturday could result in an immediate return to AFL level.

    With "hand on heart", Beveridge also rejected a rumour that Liberatore's omission was related to off-field matters.

    In the opening eight rounds, Liberatore averaged just 17.25 possessions, including only 4.5 kicks – significantly down on his past three completed seasons when he averaged 23.4 touches, including 10.8 kicks.

    "There's no doubt that Tom, I think, may not be as physically prepared as he was last year," Beveridge told SEN on Saturday.

    "I think it's got to do with … that legacy after winning a premiership.
    "He understands part of the reasoning. His challenge now is to get himself back to physical capability to play the game.

    "At the moment it's more of a stoppage-to-stoppage view from Tommy, (but) he's got so much more to offer. His very best footy can really influence games.

    "It may well be a circuit-breaker. Sometimes going back to the VFL allows a player to free themselves up a little bit as well. I've got no doubt today that he'll do that (and) his game will be a little bit different.

    "There's no penalties. You go down, you play well. If he's best player on the ground and we need to make a change, he might come straight back up.

    Beveridge said the psychological effect of the club's astonishing second premiership was "one of the great unknowns" at this stage.

    "Just achieving that in any given year is quite amazing, but to do it after a drought of 62 years, and the kudos and the attention they've had, how do they get themselves back to their very, very best?" he pondered.

    "I'm not sure the effect it's had on them yet. We just think that at some point they'll all come out of it. I don't think it's totally happened yet."


    Beveridge said he remained optimistic that the Dogs would become a better team than they were last year.
    Premierships: SENIORS - 1898,99,1900, 1908, 1913, 1919-20, 1923-24, 2014, 2016 . AFL 1954, 2016. RESERVES - 1938, 1945, 1962, 1988, 1994, 1998. UNDER 19S - 1954. Other Premierships - Championship of Victoria 1924. VFL Night Series 1963-64, 1967, 1970. Preseason Cup, 2010.

  2. #2
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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Libbas not alone. The majority of our players don't seem 'prepared' for this season whether its mentally or physically. Worrying times.
    The curse is dead.

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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Quote Originally Posted by chef View Post
    Libbas not alone. The majority of our players don't seem 'prepared' for this season whether its mentally or physically. Worrying times.

    Any others stand out in particular Chef?
    Great. I need one more thing. Soda. Yeah, I don't want my guys paying for soda. I want you to stock my machine for three years. I'm serious.

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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Quote Originally Posted by GVGjr View Post
    Any others stand out in particular Chef?
    It would be easier to name the ones that are or were ready.

    Bont and Macrae are the only two that i think can be proud of their whole effort so far this season. The others have a fair bit of work to do to get back to last seasons bench mark.
    The curse is dead.

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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Hunter started ok, but his last few weeks have been as bad as he's given for some time.
    Matty Boyd Career Highlights:

    Club Captain: 2011-2013 - Night Premiership Side: 2010 - Premiership side: 2016 - Charles Sutton Medal: 2009, 2011, 2012 - All Australian team: 2009, 2011, 2016 - Best Team Player: 2016 - Coaches Award: 2015 - Match Committee Award: 2007 - International Rules Series: 2008, 2010 - AFL Life Member - Western Bulldogs Life Member - Record Games Played by a Rookie - 8th Most Games Played for Footscray/Western Bulldogs - 66th Most Goals Kicked for Footscray Western Bulldogs - Most Finals Won by any Footscray/Western Bulldogs Player - Brownlow Votes: 108

    Bob Murphy Career Highlights:

    Club Captain: 2015-2017 - Night Premiership Side: 2010 - All Australian team: 2011 & 2015 as Captain - AFLPA Best Captain 2015 - Rising Star Nominee & Most Promising player: 2001 - Best Team Player: 2003 - Runner Up, Charles Sutton Medal: 2011 & 2015 - International Rules Series: 2002, 2003 - AFL Life Member - Western Bulldogs Life Member - 6th Most Games Played for Footscray/Western Bulldogs - 27th Most Goals Kicked for Footscray/Western Bulldogs - Club Captain of Western Bulldogs in Premiership Year: 2016 - Brownlow Votes: 51

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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Quote Originally Posted by bulldogtragic View Post
    Hunter started ok, but his last few weeks have been as bad as he's given for some time.
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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Quote Originally Posted by chef View Post
    Bont and Macrae are the only two that i think can be proud of their whole effort so far this season. The others have a fair bit of work to do to get back to last seasons bench mark.
    Jong has been an improver. Stringer started the year better than he finished last year

    Hunter has been down, Picken & Libba have dropped right off since their concussions
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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Libba certainly hasn't been the best this year. I hope he can soon recapture some form back.

    A few of our players look a bit down on form but there are others who have looked quite good. Jong I think has had a very good year. Woody has lifted again and Daniel is getting back into it.

    But boydogs is right Picko as well as Libba haven't been the greatest this year even Bont has been a bit out of form but still I think does a lot of important things in games even when his disposal count isn't the highest.

    Q: Could there be more going on with Libba?

    I'm hoping Crameri comes back but it seems his 2017 hasn't gone as planned.
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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    The head line is ridiculous, Libba missed twelves months of footy before last year. So what do you know he has the longest preseason ever, meaning he is cherry ripe for round 1 2016. Fast forward 9-10months later and he has surgery to clean up and stabilise an ankle after a brutal month of footy, after working his arse off to get back from injury that usually takes 10 weeks.

    He didn't run until January and played 5 weeks later, in the preseason. He hasn't been great by any stretch but talk about the stating the *!*!*!*!en obvious when it comes to this article.
    Last edited by SlimPickens; 21-05-2017 at 08:13 PM.
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  12. #10
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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Quote Originally Posted by boydogs View Post
    Jong has been an improver. Stringer started the year better than he finished last year

    Hunter has been down, Picken & Libba have dropped right off since their concussions
    True. Add Jong to Bont and Macrae.
    The curse is dead.

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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Quote Originally Posted by SlimPickens View Post
    The head line is ridiculous, Libba missed twelves months of footy before last year. So what do you know he has the longest preseason ever, meaning he is cherry ripe for round 1 2016. Fast forward 9-10months later and he has surgery to clean up and stabilise an ankle after a brutal month of footy, after working his arse off to get back from injury that usually takes 10 weeks.

    He didn't run until January and played 5 weeks later, in the preseason. He hasn't been great by any stretch but talk about the staying the *!*!*!*!en obvious when it comes to this article.
    Good point, but he's not the only one who had post-season surgery or had running restrictions yet he's being overly impacted.
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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Quote Originally Posted by SlimPickens View Post
    The head line is ridiculous, Libba missed twelves months of footy before last year. So what do you know he has the longest preseason ever, meaning he is cherry ripe for round 1 2016. Fast forward 9-10months later and he has surgery to clean up and stabilise an ankle after a brutal month of footy, after working his arse off to get back from injury that usually takes 10 weeks.

    He didn't run until January and played 5 weeks later, in the preseason. He hasn't been great by any stretch but talk about the staying the *!*!*!*!en obvious when it comes to this article.
    Unfortunately for Tom he's publicly and less publicly forged a reputation that precedes itself. He's made conscious decisions to behave a certain way, so the perception of pretty much all and sundry on the outside who've witnessed it to varying degrees is that he's likely partied too hard. Nobody's going to take the time to go into the detail you've highlighted that probably accounts for the majority of his present form issues.

    I said a few weeks ago that his kicking which is elite, wasn't being used enough. Now I know why.

    What I'd really like to know is how he approached his rehab, and how he presented condition wise post the GF knowing that he was having surgery post season.
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  16. #13
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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Quote Originally Posted by SlimPickens View Post
    The head line is ridiculous, Libba missed twelves months of footy before last year. So what do you know he has the longest preseason ever, meaning he is cherry ripe for round 1 2016. Fast forward 9-10months later and he has surgery to clean up and stabilise an ankle after a brutal month of footy, after working his arse off to get back from injury that usually takes 10 weeks.

    He didn't run until January and played 5 weeks later, in the preseason. He hasn't been great by any stretch but talk about the staying the *!*!*!*!en obvious when it comes to this article.
    I get what you are saying but I believe Tom Boyd had his surgery straight after the season so that he would be ready for the 2017 season.
    I wonder if we underestimated the extent of time Liberatore would need to recover from surgery or did we delay it so that he could have his end of season holiday meaning he was always going to be well behind?

    I doubt Bevo would say he hasn't done the work as per the previous year if it was actually more about the impact of the surgery. Over a few years Tom has a earned a reputation for really getting stuck into his training and it appears Bevo hasn't quite seen that in him.
    Great. I need one more thing. Soda. Yeah, I don't want my guys paying for soda. I want you to stock my machine for three years. I'm serious.

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  17. #14
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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Quote Originally Posted by SlimPickens View Post
    The head line is ridiculous, Libba missed twelves months of footy before last year. So what do you know he has the longest preseason ever, meaning he is cherry ripe for round 1 2016. Fast forward 9-10months later and he has surgery to clean up and stabilise an ankle after a brutal month of footy, after working his arse off to get back from injury that usually takes 10 weeks.

    He didn't run until January and played 5 weeks later, in the preseason. He hasn't been great by any stretch but talk about the staying the *!*!*!*!en obvious when it comes to this article.
    In fairness Bevo has come out and said he isn't as physically prepared as he was 12 months ago .
    If it was a case of Beeing underdone I'm sure Beveridge would have said as such .

  18. #15
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    Re: Axed Dog not as 'physically prepared' as last year

    Hopefully this season has a bit of "Rocky 2" about it! A bit of hunger lost, some distractions kicking in and a loss of focus. Libba's lost a bit of the "eye of the tiger" as silly and dramatic as that sounds..

    Last year the whole squad had a chip on their shoulder. A hunger to win respect. With any luck, our underwhelming start to the season has taken a bit of the "millionaires" sheen off us and given some of our players a bit of that hunger back.

    Guys like Libba and Biggs - who were maniacally hungry with their pressure and desperation in last year's finals have noticeably dropped off this year. Libba's one of our best three players and Biggs wasn't far off the Norm Smith Medal last year - yet they're both in the magoos...

    I think their celebrations in the off season may have been equally maniacal!

    In contrast, Mitch Wallis looked hungrier than ever on Friday night. Meanwhile, Bob Murphy and Jack Redpath would be desperate after the work they've put in to get back on the park for a shot at it.

    I hope a few of our guys can reset the focus and recapture the single minded work ethic (on the track as well as in matches) to get the job done in the coming months. I'm hoping they do the right thing for Bob Murphy and don't piss a season away by feeling satisfied by what they achieved last year.

    There's plenty of time to celebrate when you're retired. Libba needs to set himself some intensive catch up sessions and train as hard over the next month as he partied at the end of last year. If he can do that, we're a shot.

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