Coach Post Match – Todd Curley Round 6

Tuesday, May 8, 2018 - 5:25 AM by Chris Pike

WHAT South Fremantle coach Todd Curley had to say following the Bulldogs' 13-point Round 6 WAFL victory against Swan Districts to give them four straight wins heading into the State Game break.

QUESTION: Swan Districts kept challenging you all day, but you kept responding too so I think you'll be really happy with that result?
We were rapt. Obviously towards the end we conceded a bit more score than we would have liked but we had some challenges with personnel and then Saundo got a bit sore so we took him out. We had a few underdone as well and had seven blokes with 15 games or less. That shows good signs for the future there and Glenn Byron in his first game was good. We have some really young kids out there and I thought our leaders stood up as well so it was good.

Q: There was a couple of times when they were able to get some momentum and string some goals together, but you were able to respond on each occasion?
I always felt like we had the game in control and when they came at us, we stood up and our leaders stood up. I thought we were really on top halfway through the third quarter and then an undisciplined act off the ball gave them a bit of momentum. But I was really pleased.

Q: When did you know you'd be without Schloithe, Hams, Wilson and Edwards, and how pleasing was it to win without them?
Willo and Hamsy we've known about for a while because they were away for work so it's no issue there. Schloithey just didn’t pull up from the trip to Albany. He went down by car and didn’t feel quite 100 per cent coming back so we were certainly not going to take any risks with him with us having the bye next week. Stevie Edwards got a knock and was able to train Wednesday and Thursday, but woke up this morning and wasn’t feel like he could give his teammates everything. It was a really brave call by him to pull out at 9 o'clock this morning, we shuffled it around and away we went.

Q: Pretty handy that you were able to bring in Cory Dell'Olio, Zac Strom and Adam McIntosh for their first games of the season though?
It was but Zac only came in this morning when we got the call about Steve. He's been pretty crook and is still a bit underdone and we knew that, but we knew he would give us everything. Dell hasn’t missed a beat and has obviously been training really hard so we knew that he would come in and do well. McIntosh as well has been crook and we might have played him a week or two earlier than we would have liked, but in the end we needed some soldiers and we thought they were the best ones to get the job done.

Q: How happy are you with what you are seeing from young guys like Daniel Cabassi, Glenn Byron and Brandon Donaldson? 
It's been really pleasing. Obviously sometimes when you have the injury stuff it gives guys opportunity but it reinforces that our program and what we're doing with our young players is working because they've been able to come in and just play their role. Cabassi was fantastic last week in his first game and really good again today, Glenn Byron was really good, Chaddy Pearson continues to do well and Matt Parker has played less than 15 games still. Jake Florenca too and they all played their role. Dono has become an important part of our team too. We have some soldiers coming back in the next few weeks but if the young guys keep playing their role it's going to be hard to find out where we make that room.

Q: We probably say the same about Brock Higgins every week, but a big job against Corey Gault and Nathan Blakely, and he did it well?
I thought he was really important and I thought he got on top in the first half which forced them into a position to move Gault from forward into the ruck. We thought that had a significant impact for us and it probably affected their structure a bit as well. He's been really consistent and he always gives you great physicality and effort.

Q: Marlion Pickett was clearly best on ground and he's now making that midfield position a more permanent home?
He had a pretty good day. His first 15 minutes was probably as good as I've seen from one of our mids. The opportunity probably came with Tim Kelly moving on and we are trying to get the right mix in there. He certainly gives us something different and he was pretty good today.

Q: Are you surprised he's not in the State squad and would you expect him to be added?
The State selectors will pick who they think gives them the best chance but we love the way he plays and we'll wait and see.

Q: It feels like a long way away with the State game in between but East Perth in a couple of weeks looms as a big game?
Yeah but to be 4-1 when we've had a disjointed start is a good effort. I thought our pre-season phase was a challenge. We played East Perth when they had all their West Coast guys out and Perth then had the bye leading into the Subi game. Then we had three games away and travelled to Albany, and had some challenges with injury so we're really pleased with where we're at. We'll welcome the week off to reset and go again, and we look forward to taking on the Royals in a couple of weeks.

Q: Do you expect to be pretty close to full strength by then?
Obviously Vandeleur is out for the year having had his knee reconstruction. Parry won't be available. Brendan Verrier might be. Most of the others will be around the mark.