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Lions to 'belt' Rich's opponent

Michael Whiting  April 1, 2013 3:57 PM

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Daniel Rich needs more support from his teammates, Tom Rockliff says

I think Geelong's set the standard for that in the past where if they've got a player getting tagged, they've gone out there and belted them
THE BRISBANE Lions have vowed to provide more physical support for midfielder Daniel Rich after he was tagged out of Saturday's loss to the Western Bulldogs.

Bulldogs recruit Nick Lower blanketed the influential Rich and kept him to a career-low eight disposals as his team romped to a 68-point upset win.

Like his teammates, Rich's fellow vice-captain Tom Rockliff was licking his wounds back in Brisbane on Monday following the loss.

He denied there was a hangover from the NAB Cup triumph, but said the Lions had to work harder if Rich is tagged by Adelaide on Saturday.

"If someone's going to pick on one of our blokes, we've got to make sure he's in for a long day," Rockliff said.

"I think Geelong's set the standard for that in the past where if they've got a player getting tagged, they've gone out there and belted them.

Lions were sideswiped by the Dogs, says Voss

"We didn't do that at all. I don't think anyone bumped into Lower on the day, and the mentality for some reason was poor on the weekend."

Rich's performance was indicative of the entire Lions outfit, which came crashing back to earth following the pre-season success.

Rockliff said coach Michael Voss and his staff had the players in a good frame of mind, but they failed to respond.

"We knew they were going to come out hard and fast and hit in hard and we expected that from the start … we just couldn't handle their attack on the footy early," he said.

"When they got the scoreboard pressure on us, they just beat us in all areas of the game. They beat us inside and out which is not a good thing.

"We didn't play the way we have throughout the pre-season, we went back to an older game-style where we bombed it in on Browny's head instead of playing the way we want to, and we want to get our uncontested marks up and limit the opposition's."

In good news for the Lions, Irish winger Pearce Hanley can play against the Crows if he accepts a reprimand and takes an early guilty plea for an incident involving Daniel Giansiracusa.

Ruckman Matthew Leuenberger played a full game for the Lions' reserves on Saturday and may come into selection calculations.

Daniel Rich is a midfielder in NAB AFL Fantasy. He averaged 85 points in 2012.
Register your team at our AFL Fantasy Hub .

Michael Whiting covers Brisbane Lions news for AFL.com.au. Follow him on Twitter: @AFL_mikewhiting