Saturday, February 25, 2012

Pre Season Blues

If AFL players think it's tough training in the Summer swelter, think of the poor footy fan who must endure six long months without any football!

As a step towards recovering from this long break, I've been down to watch the Blue boys train a couple of times, while they gear up for the season ahead.

I thought I would share some candid photos of some of the boys in action, to help get us through the long wait...


Goal Shooting Practice

Gibbsy lining up for goal

Matty Kreuzer takes a shot from 50

Walker has looked fit & sharp during pre-season

Kreuzer trash talks Hampson

Luke Mitchell - a picture of concentration

Walker lines up from half forward

Kruezer attempts to kick over Spiderman

Chris Judd checks out the Optus Broadband deal

Set Plays & Drills

Carrazzo, Scotland and Walker practice a set play

Ed Curnow juggles a loose ball

Carrazzo - upset that he's not being included in the next set play

Coaching staff shows Shaun Hampson how to to keep the ball away from opponents during games

Mitch Carter freezes as he tries to remember how to complete a handball

Chris Yarran - just lookin'

Jeremy Laidler,  wondering what he said to upset Andrew Walker

Andrew Carrazzo handballs to nobody in particular

Kade Simpson laughs at Ed Curnow's hair, while Nick Heyne & Mitch Carter decide not to get involved

Matthew Watson & Jeremy Laidler in a marking competition. Watto won this one.

Marc Murphy races into goal

A.J. looking for someone to train with

Marc Murphy, wondering which football to pick up

Jeremy Laidler - pretending to be a Thunderbird

A Thunderbird - pretending to be Jeremy Laidler

Simmo talking up a big fish he caught during the week

Juddy & Jamo - after early injury setbacks, both are looking at playing a part in the pre-season NAB Cup

Jarrad Waite briefly contemplates a switch to soccer

Dylan Buckley, son of 'Father of Dylan', appears to have settled in nicely down at Visy Park

Chris Judd - running laps around the boundary, and around Jamo

Distraught that nobody asked for his autograph at the boundary line

Juddy - back to full contact training

Heath Scotland, modelling a new prototype wrist-guard

Simmo - still going on about that fishing trip

Marc Murphy - looking to his right

And now deciding which way to look next

Match Practice

Kane Lucas breaks away from Jordan Russell. My money is on Lucas for a breakout season

Andrew Walker chases down the ball while Paul Bower closes in

Heath Scotland gets a handball away before being crunched by David Ellard

Eddie Betts swoops on the loose ball

This guy clears from defence

Matty Kreuzer and Shaun Hampson duel in the ruck

This Bootsma's made for Walker

McLean tries to steal Kreuzer's ball. Nobody does that

The game is stopped as Andrew Carrazzo has a question

That guy again, running with the ball

Walker, with another clearance

Bret Thornton runs sideways across the backline - crabstyle

Hampson flies for a strong overhead mark between defenders

Kade Simpson spots someone who hasn't heard his fish story

Hampson cleverly using the force to keep the ball away from Kruezer

Denis Armfield goes in hard with his fingertips

Josh Bootsma is given a tackling lesson by old pro Kade 'Big Fish'  Simpson

David Ellard on the burst - looks set for a big season

A golf cart

Murphy, moon-walking in his powder blue boots

Murphy - wondering who the smartass with the camera is

Coach Brett Ratten, retells Simmo's story

Andrew Collins asks if orange makes him look fat

Andrew Walker brushes up on his netball skills

Mitch launches for a big grab

Before landing ballerina style

Paul Bower evades an invisible opponent

Jeff Garlett, another player who has looked sharp early in the season

Josh Bootsma in full flight. This kid can play

Brock McLean unloads, with nobody chasing him

Bret Thornton, with the unusual action of moving the ball forward

Chris Judd, wondering if he'll be home in time for My Kitchen Rules

Simmo pumps another ball forward

Aaron Joseph marks deep in defence

Marc Murphy in classic drop punt pose

Jordan Russell misunderstood the coach's instruction to 'take Bootsma to the forward line'

McLean, not realising the game has finished

Game over - the boys take a well deserved drink


The players say goodbye at the end of a long training session

Andrew Walker fights to get his sock back

It can be hard to say goodbye at times

Aaron Joseph and Denis Armfield. Said to be 'close'

Sam Rowe thinks he's found Andrew Walker's sock

Paul Bower goes in hard with the armpit

Sam Rowe gives up.

And it all ends in laughter

And so with the NAB Cup underway, and our boys set to put in a solid pre-season tournament, I hope these few training shots have helped you through this long, hot Summer.

It's all about the footy from here on in - See you there!

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