Eagles aren’t duckers, says Darren Glass
West Coast captain Darren Glass isn’t losing any sleep over accusations his team are manipulating AFL rules in the tackle, dismissing claims the Eagles are a bunch of duckers.
WEST COAST captain Darren Glass isn’t losing any sleep over accusations his team are manipulating AFL rules in the tackle, dismissing claims the Eagles are a bunch of duckers.
Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson questioned West Coast’s duck and shrug tactics earlier this season, while North Melbourne coach Brad Scott said he wouldn’t want his own players to get a reputation for ducking their heads to win free kicks.
West Coast have won 52 more free kicks than their opponents this season, and sit on top of the table following six straight wins.
But the Eagles have become sick of defending the technique they are perceived to be using when tackled.
“For us it’s just a non-issue. We don’t speak about it, we don’t look at vision, we don’t practice anything in particular,” Glass said on Monday.
“Each individual tackle has its own story.
“We don’t lose sleep at night over someone tackling us head high. It’s just a non-issue.
“I’ve never seen Ashton Hams duck his head.
“I’ve seen players get him around the head attempting to tackle him, but I’ve never seen him duck his head.
“Overall I think the umpires do a great job and if someone gets hit around the head they have to give the free kick.”
Eagles defender Sam Butler was also surprised at all the tackling talk.
“A couple of coaches now are bringing it up, I don’t really understand it,” Butler said.
“It’s a rule, so play the game.
“The way the AFL is now you protect the ball carrier, and that’s what’s happening.”
Glass was happy with how the Eagles were handling opposition tackles, but said they needed to start laying more tackles themselves.
“We’ve done a lot of work on our tackling over the last couple of years and certainly our tackle count itself, the amount of tackles we’re laying, isn’t up to scratch,” Glass said.
Injury-hit West Coast face their sternest test of the season when they take on in-form Essendon (5-1) at Etihad Stadium on Saturday night.
Defender Adam Selwood is set to miss the game with split webbing in his hand, but the Eagles are hopeful ruckman Nic Naitanui, who was a late withdrawal against the Roos due to hamstring soreness, will be ready to return. - AAP
Image: CLASH OF EAGLES: Beau Waters and Eric MacKenzie for the Eagles contest the ball with Drew Petrie for the Kangaroos inPerthon Sunday. West Coast won the match 120-95. They take on the Bombers this Saturday. (AAP Image/Tony McDonough)