Praise for Bruce’s 10 goal haul
JOSH Bruce has bounced back into form this season with fourteen goals from three games, including ten on Good Friday against North Melbourne.
Bruce took full advantage of the absence of key talls for the ‘Roos, taking ten grabs to go with 12 scoring shots for the night, showcasing the potential the Dogs saw when they traded for him in 2019.
Western Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge was full of praise for his key forward who’s reaping the rewards of his hard work.
“We’re just so pleased for him, he worked so hard last year under trying circumstances, he’s smelling the roses this morning no doubt about it,” Beveridge told SEN’s Crunch Time.
Bruce played 17 games for just the 14 goals last year yet has already equalled that total in just three games in 2021.
He booted three goals before quarter time on Friday, prompting Beveridge to “clear out” the forward line and isolate him inside 50.
“You can fall into the trap of going to (Bruce) too often, but the directive and incentive was there to make sure we tried to feed Josh,” Beveridge said.
The Bulldogs coach believes the ‘stand’ rule for the man on the mark has had a big influence over Bruce and the other tall forwards in the league.
“The biggest change with the man on the mark is that some of the defensive systems of teams are falling down.
“A lot of these goals are coming off hit ups where historically that was very hard to find because the guy had to kick over the man on the mark.
“Bruce has been pretty good from long range, and it all points towards some bigger totals from key forwards.”
Bruce now sits second in the Coleman Medal race, three goals behind Adelaide forward Taylor Walker.
– BY SEB MOTTRAM/ SEN