Hawks could benefit from a shorter season
DRYSDALE co-coach Luke Matthews believes a shortened season may prove beneficial for the Hawks.
With local football in shutdown mode until at least May 31 and the likely prospect of a season that will feature no more than nine or 10 home-and-away rounds, Matthews said the delay “has played into our hands”.
“Flinn Chisholm has missed three seasons of football and started the pre-season a little bit later than most,” Matthews said.
“So, it’s probably a good thing to get some run in his legs.
“Macklin Raine also had a delayed start (to pre-season).
“We’ve also got some older guys, too, and it’s probably good for them to freshen up over the next month or so.”
Having given their list a break following the announcement of the season’s shutdown in mid-March, the Hawks have now provided players with a training program that will have them prepared for a return to action – whenever that is.
“(It’s) nothing to full-on, but just trying to get the guys moving and staying connected and active,” Matthews said.
“But also to have a bit of fun and utilise all the social media stuff to put some smiles back on faces.
“There’ll be team challenges and a bit of fun stuff.”
Matthews isn’t concerned the enforced break will dim his players’ motivation levels.
“We’re pretty lucky we have a hungry, driven group that is putting in the work,” he said.
“If 20-30 guys are putting in the work, I’m sure it just inspires the other 20-30 to jump on board as well.”
Matthews and co-coach Daniel Jull should now be two rounds into their season in charge at Mortimer Oval.
After a sixth-placed finish last year, the duo had hoped to use that as a launchpad into a first finals series since 2013.
With 2020 compromised, Matthews has indicated he and his 2009 premiership teammate are keen to continue the rebuild.
“We haven’t sat down with ‘Doc’ (president David Walder) to have a chat about next year; it’s been more speaking about possible recruits for next year,” Matthews said.
“I would love to continue in the role and continue to get the club to where we want to go – get it back to top.
“But it’s up to the club to decide what they want, who’s their best candidate.”