Main content

Demon Oliver tackles his tackling technique

Defiant Cat, Brayshaw latest, Dixon ready Wednesday Footy Feed with Matt Thompson and Nat Edwards
Clayton Oliver is refining his tackling technique after being fined for a sling tackle - ${keywords}
Clayton Oliver is refining his tackling technique after being fined for a sling tackle

EXCITING young Melbourne midfielder Clayton Oliver has begun to work on his tackling technique to avoid coming under Match Review Panel scrutiny in the future.

The 18-year-old took part in tackling drills with teammate Neville Jetta away from the main group at the end of training on Wednesday under the watchful eye of midfield coach Brett Allison.

Oliver escaped with a $1000 fine for engaging in rough conduct against Port Adelaide's Aaron Young during the fourth quarter of Saturday's NAB Challenge game, but Melbourne has realised he needs to work on that part of his game.

The MRP graded Oliver's tackle as careless with low impact to the head.

The Demons are understood to be pleased with the midfielder's approach but want to ensure he develops a technique that won't land him in hot water with the MRP again.

The AFL is cracking down further on dangerous tackles this season, with umpires and the MRP instructed to apply a stricter adjudication and interpretation of tackles made with a lifting, slinging or rotating technique. 

It was Oliver's first game with the club after being selected at No.4 in the 2015 NAB AFL Draft.

He laid four tackles in the game but showed poise when he had the ball, gathering five contested possessions and six uncontested possessions.

He is a chance to play against the Western Bulldogs at Craigieburn on Sunday.

Meanwhile Christian Petracca took part in full training for the first time on Wednesday.

The 20-year-old did not play a senior game last year after knee injury in the pre-season.

His comeback was delayed when he broke his toe before Christmas, but he is making solid progress.

Melbourne won't be rushing Petracca, who was the No.2 pick in the 2014 Nab AFL Draft.

He is almost certain to not play round one, with expectation being that he will begin his preparation for senior football in the VFL.