[close]

AFL Hawks aim to share Mitchell's workload

Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson says it will take a team effort to cover injured star Tom Mitchell, after the Hawks lost their final AFL trial to Richmond.

AFL Hawks aim to share Mitchell's workload

Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson says it will take a team effort to cover injured star Tom Mitchell, after the Hawks lost their final AFL trial to Richmond.

TOM MITCHELL of the Hawks in action during the 2018 AFL match between the Hawthorn Hawks and the Collingwood Magpies at the MCG in Melbourne, Australia.
TOM MITCHELL of the Hawks in action during the 2018 AFL match between the Hawthorn Hawks and the Collingwood Magpies at the MCG in Melbourne, Australia. Picture:Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media/Getty Images

It will take a group effort to cover Hawthorn's midfield gap left by injured star Tom Mitchell, coach Alastair Clarkson admits.

The Hawks held a 40-point halftime lead against Richmond but were run down in the clubs' final AFL pre-season hit-out on Saturday night in Launceston.


Clarkson said his side lost control of the middle as the Tigers, last year's preliminary finalists, finished with a flurry to win by eight points.

Jaeger O'Meara notched 35 possessions, last season's average of 111-gamer Mitchell, who is likely sidelined for the season with a broken leg.

But Clarkson said the workload shouldn't fall on one player ongoing.

"Jaeger is obviously a seasoned player. We naturally expect him to fill some of that void," Clarkson said.

"But we need a whole series of players to try and fill the gap that's been left by Tom's absence."

Hawthorn, who were bundled from the 2018 finals in straight sets, are without a JLT series win heading into their round-one match against Adelaide.

The Hawks dominated Richmond for the first half but the game flipped after the main break.

"We're pleased with the way we move the ball at different stages into our forwards, particularly the first half," Clarkson said.

"We just couldn't move the ball how we'd like and weren't as clean around the contest in the second half as what Richmond were. We knew they were going to come out fired up."

In their first pre-season hit-out, veteran Jarryd Roughead slotted five goals and Luke Breustwas sharp.

Clarkson drew parallels with last year's premiers West Coast, who overcame injuries to several key players to claim the flag.

"We're going to miss Mitch, he's been a very good player for us but it doesn't mean we're out of it by any stretch," he said.

AAP


AAP




Latest Stories