Hayden Young adamant Dockers’ game plan can withstand any conditions despite rain suiting Suns
Fremantle defender Hayden Young believes his club’s game plan can withstand any conditions despite fumbling and stumbling their way to a 36-point loss to Gold Coast.
The Suns handled the slippery conditions far better than the Dockers at Metricon Stadium on Sunday and easily accounted for the visitors around the contest.
That was despite Fremantle training in the rain on Thursday and in the wet again during a captain’s run on the Gold Coast the day before the clash.
Young said the Dockers tweaked their game plan to account for the conditions as the rain slowed their blistering speed, but conceded his team’s inability to execute basic skills was more costly as they “didn’t handle the conditions well.”
“We still wanted to play our brand of footy and with our shape and ball movement but once the conditions changed, we made some alterations and tried to keep the ball moving forward and be more aggressive with our ball movement to create some more opportunities,” Young said.
“We were well aware of what the conditions were going to bring and we had to come in with some clear focuses on the contest.
“Our game plan should stand up in any conditions. We just struggled to execute basic skills which don’t enable our game plan to come to life.
“We came in with a plan to play a certain shape and move the ball a certain way, but if you can’t pick a ground-ball up or hit an easy handball it makes us hard to do anything. I think our game plan stands up in all conditions, it was just the execution of it which let us down.
“It’s an opportunity to reassess and look at what we didn’t do well so if we come up against these conditions again, if we’re not doing the basics well enough we can work on ways to get ourselves in the game.”
Young said Fremantle’s inability to compete in tight, losing clearances (46-30) and contested possessions (174-157), was a bigger concern.
That was despite the Dockers winning disposals (376-335), inside 50s (65-36), hitouts (46-33) and marks (70-62).
“Our work rate between contests wasn’t good enough,” Young said.
“We were outnumbered at ground level and it’s something we’ll go away and work on. We’re disappointed but there’s opportunities to get better and that’s what we’ll focus on.
“We had a lot of inside 50s throughout the game so we definitely created opportunities we just weren’t able to execute.”
The loss marked Fremantle’s first since round two against St Kilda, ending a six-game winning streak.
But Young said the Dockers wouldn’t dramatically alter their preparation ahead of Sunday’s clash with Collingwood at Optus Stadium.
“We try to keep our weeks pretty similar whether we win or lose,” he said.
“It’s important to anchor and come back to our usual weekly processes that prepare us for games.
“There will probably be a bit more attention to detail this week with our fundamentals and execution but largely the week will remain the same heading into Collingwood.”
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