What they said: Clarkson

Adelaide Crows and the Hawthorn Hawks at Adelaide Oval on March 23, 2019 in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by James Elsby/AFL Photos)” title=”AFL 2019 Round 01 – Adelaide v Hawthorn”/>

ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA – MARCH 23: Alastair Clarkson, Senior Coach of the Hawks during the 2019 AFL round 01 match between the Adelaide Crows and the Hawthorn Hawks at Adelaide Oval on March 23, 2019 in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by James Elsby/AFL Photos)

Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson fronted the media after Adelaide’s 32-point loss to the Hawks on Saturday night at Adelaide Oval.

On being the underdog…

It’s a tough ask, particularly Round One, to have such an assignment like this interstate with a high-quality side. I don’t think last season reflects the true Adelaide so we’re expecting a really strong outfit and their pre-season form’s been really strong. We need to play some of our best pressure footy to be able to stifle the Adelaide side. Their greatest strength is being able to move the ball quickly and score quickly as well. Our ability to keep them to just the seven goals was first class.

It was a tough grind; there was a lot of mistakes by both sides, but we’ve seen that in all three of the games thus far. That’s going to happen in the early rounds of the season… it’s as open a season as I’ve seen it. According to the pundits, three of the four games have been won by the underdog in a sense so we’re pleased to be one of those.

On stopping a potent attack…

Their midfield still had a lot of possession of the ball. The Crouch brothers and Sloane, they’re such high quality players and they’re always going to get the ball. But it’s how potent they can be when they get it in their hands. Adelaide found it hard to get the fluency inside-50, and to take marks and kick goals.

Certainly those goals out the back that Adelaide can quite often get, that gets them going, gets the crowd going, and they’re so hard to stop once they’re in that mode. They didn’t get any of those today and that was first class by a lot of our players today.

Sometimes it’s just how many guys of your team can play their role and chip in when it’s required and win some of those important moments in games which are just 50-50s and get the ball forward. We by and large did that better than Adelaide in today’s game.

On lower scores and early mistakes…

Adelaide are very capable of kicking that type of [100+] score and at different stages we are too, but in the first game of the season neither side is going to be up and about, being able to kick that type of score. Guys for both sides… Jack Gunston misses three set shots that he just doesn’t miss. Eddie Betts misses from 30 out, the start of the last quarter… It’s like jeez, what is going on with this game. That’s what happens with fatigue and the first game of the year. A lot of mistakes. That’s not going to be happening very much from this point on.

Source: Adelaide Crows website

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