Martinez impressing as Hasleby backs stars for AFL

Wednesday, June 12, 2013 - 9:17 PM

SOUTH Fremantle coach Paul Hasleby is obviously happy to have Ryan Cook and Ashton Hams as much as he can in his team, but believes both deserve to be regular AFL players while he continues to be impressed at the emergence of hard-at-it midfielder Jacob Martinez.

South Fremantle has been ably led by its captain Cook for all of what has been a tough 2013 season to date in his third year at the Bulldogs and second as skipper.
Cook played 14 games in five years with Collingwood before coming to South Fremantle at the start of the 2011 season. He has now played 52 with the Bulldogs, twice for WA and become one of the hardest running ball-winning midfielders in the competition.
The 25-year-old has also shown strong leadership qualities of a young group and that's why Hasleby believes he is primed for another chance at the AFL.
Meanwhile Hams is on West Coast's list and did receive a call-up to play in Sunday's win over St Kilda, but only because of Mark LeCras not playing.
He has played three times for South Fremantle this season and starred in the Bulldogs' only two wins with four goals and 24 possessions against Peel in Round 9, and a best on ground 34 disposals and three goals against East Fremantle in Round 11.
Hasleby has no doubt he is the best AFL-listed player who performs when back in the WAFL and can't fathom why isn’t playing with the Eagles and every week.
Having played 208 games himself with Fremantle where he was an All-Australian midfielder, Hasleby is in a good position to judge and even if it's to the detriment of South Fremantle, he hopes to see Cook and Hams playing regularly in the AFL come 2014.
"They are both great players," Hasleby said.
"In my opinion, they both should be back in the AFL or playing in the AFL particularly Ryan Cook with his season so far. He has been an absolute star and he has really worked on some of the deficiencies in his game. I think he is ready now for another shot at the elite level.
"I believe he (Hams) is the best AFL player when he comes back and plays in the WAFL with his impact on games and on the scoreboard."
Another player to impress with South Fremantle has been hard-working 20-year-old midfielder Jacob Martinez.
After being challenged by Hasleby earlier in the season and dropped to the reserves, he has returned with a vengeance and over the past fortnight done impressive run-with jobs on East Fremantle's Rory O'Brien and Subiaco's Jason Bristow.
In his last five games, Martinez has laid 40 strong tackles with his defensive pressure enormous while he can also win the ball and has gathered 43 disposals the last fortnight. Hasleby sees plenty of similarities with him another ex-Fremantle teammate of his.
"His defensive intensity reminds me a lot of Troy Cook in the way he goes about it," he said.
"He was also very good with ball in hand this week, but I thought he stopped O'Brien from having much influence on the game as well and he has cut us up quite a bit in the past. Full credit goes to 'Spaniard' for his effort."
South Fremantle did appear to have turned a corner with its thumping win over East Fremantle two weeks ago. The Bulldogs then could have been in front of Subiaco at half-time on Saturday but didn’t take their chances, and then totally dominated the third quarter but couldn’t kick a goal.
The Lions then turned around to kick nine straight goals either side of three quarter-time and Hasleby is fully aware that the Bulldogs need to find a way produce more of the effort that they had against East Fremantle if they are to climb off the bottom of the ladder.
"You are kidding yourselves if you don’t give that effort every week," Hasleby said.
"As a club, that's what we strive for and if you bring that attitude in any game, you will be a chance. Even though we are a young group, we need to learn that is the standard effort and we can continue that, and keep raising the standard then we will be a good football team in the future."
By Chris PikeSOUTH Fremantle coach Paul Hasleby is obviously happy to have Ryan Cook and Ashton Hams as much as he can in his team, but believes both deserve to be regular AFL players while he continues to be impressed at the emergence of hard-at-it midfielder Jacob Martinez.

South Fremantle has been ably led by its captain Cook for all of what has been a tough 2013 season to date in his third year at the Bulldogs and second as skipper.

Cook played 14 games in five years with Collingwood before coming to South Fremantle at the start of the 2011 season. He has now played 52 with the Bulldogs, twice for WA and become one of the hardest running ball-winning midfielders in the competition.

The 25-year-old has also shown strong leadership qualities of a young group and that's why Hasleby believes he is primed for another chance at the AFL.

Meanwhile Hams is on West Coast's list and did receive a call-up to play in Sunday's win over St Kilda, but only because of Mark LeCras not playing.

He has played three times for South Fremantle this season and starred in the Bulldogs' only two wins with four goals and 24 possessions against Peel in Round 9, and a best on ground 34 disposals and three goals against East Fremantle in Round 11.

Hasleby has no doubt he is the best AFL-listed player who performs when back in the WAFL and can't fathom why isn’t playing with the Eagles and every week.

Having played 208 games himself with Fremantle where he was an All-Australian midfielder, Hasleby is in a good position to judge and even if it's to the detriment of South Fremantle, he hopes to see Cook and Hams playing regularly in the AFL come 2014.

"They are both great players," Hasleby said.

"In my opinion, they both should be back in the AFL or playing in the AFL particularly Ryan Cook with his season so far. He has been an absolute star and he has really worked on some of the deficiencies in his game. I think he is ready now for another shot at the elite level.

"I believe he (Hams) is the best AFL player when he comes back and plays in the WAFL with his impact on games and on the scoreboard."

Another player to impress with South Fremantle has been hard-working 20-year-old midfielder Jacob Martinez.

After being challenged by Hasleby earlier in the season and dropped to the reserves, he has returned with a vengeance and over the past fortnight done impressive run-with jobs on East Fremantle's Rory O'Brien and Subiaco's Jason Bristow.

In his last five games, Martinez has laid 40 strong tackles with his defensive pressure enormous while he can also win the ball and has gathered 43 disposals the last fortnight. Hasleby sees plenty of similarities with him another ex-Fremantle teammate of his.

"His defensive intensity reminds me a lot of Troy Cook in the way he goes about it," he said.

"He was also very good with ball in hand this week, but I thought he stopped O'Brien from having much influence on the game as well and he has cut us up quite a bit in the past. Full credit goes to 'Spaniard' for his effort."

South Fremantle did appear to have turned a corner with its thumping win over East Fremantle two weeks ago. The Bulldogs then could have been in front of Subiaco at half-time on Saturday but didn’t take their chances, and then totally dominated the third quarter but couldn’t kick a goal.

The Lions then turned around to kick nine straight goals either side of three quarter-time and Hasleby is fully aware that the Bulldogs need to find a way produce more of the effort that they had against East Fremantle if they are to climb off the bottom of the ladder.

"You are kidding yourselves if you don’t give that effort every week," Hasleby said.

"As a club, that's what we strive for and if you bring that attitude in any game, you will be a chance. Even though we are a young group, we need to learn that is the standard effort and we can continue that, and keep raising the standard then we will be a good football team in the future."

By Chris Pike