Liam Jones celebrates a goal during the Dogs' clash with Richmond
THE SCENE playing out at the other end of the ground was a familiar one for Liam Jones on Sunday.
He had watched Jack Riewoldt lead, double back, and then lead again on tape so many times before. Only this time, Jones was doing the same thing at the opposite end of Etihad Stadium.
Riewoldt kicked five goals to power Richmond to a 67-point win over the Western Bulldogs on Sunday.
With limited opportunities, Jones booted a career-high four goals to be one of the Bulldogs' best players.
"I watch a lot of Jack Riewoldt's stuff. Just his leading patterns and where and how he gets the ball," Jones told AFL.com.au after the game.
In his quest to become an improved player, Jones admits he studies copious amounts of vision of the competition's best forwards.
Expectations have been high on the 22-year-old since he arrived at the club with pick No. 32 in the 2008 NAB AFL Draft.
At times, in 2012, he was unable to meet them, but Dogs coach Brendan McCartney felt Jones had made some significant headway in his 40th AFL game.
"He was terrific, wasn't he?" McCartney said post-match on Sunday.
"It was actually good for him to mark the ball so cleanly and win his one-on-ones and convert. It was a good step in the right direction for him."
The impact of Bulldogs' specialist coaches and Geelong premiership players Cameron Mooney and Matthew Scarlett has been significant on Jones this season.
Jones has regularly sought Mooney's advice on where to position himself in certain situations as a forward. Scarlett's instructions have been built around making Jones a harder player to guard against.
Jones says the advice has been invaluable and he believes, in time, he will be better placed to impact games more often.
"As I get more games under my belt, the more relationships I build with my teammates," Jones said.
"I got a lot of space [Sunday]. The forwards have started to work well together to give each other space and create a lot of one-on-ones.
"We just need to hold the ball in there (inside 50) for longer."
Ben Guthrie is a reporter for AFL.com.au. Follow him on Twitter- @AFL_BenGuthrie