Matthew Nicks and Chris Fagan after Adelaide's draw with Brisbane in R9, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

MATTHEW Nicks has defended his tactical decision to substitute Daniel Curtin at half time of Adelaide's draw with Brisbane on Sunday evening, saying he'll continue to take risks with his sub players.

For the second game running, and the second of his career, Curtin was subbed out of the game as Nicks opted to use the sub rule for on-field impact rather than just as injury cover. The risk of removing Curtin and bringing Luke Nankervis into the game at half-time was exposed when important Crows defender Josh Worrell injured his wrist a mere five minutes into the third term, leaving the Crows one short on the bench for the rest of the game.

CROWS v LIONS Full match coverage and stats

But Nicks says he won't shy away from pulling a similar move in the future.

"We'll continue to use that sub role as an impact player. We will take some risks around it," Nicks said post-match.

"There's always a risk involved when you make that change. I thought 'Nank' came on and had an impact on the game. In hindsight, which is a really easy thing to say, it would have been great to still have that up our sleeve, but we'll continue to work the same way with that sub role."


Nicks confirmed Worrell's injury suspected to be a broken wrist, which will likely see the defender miss an extended period of the season.

"I feel for (Worrell) because he's now going to go through some rehabilitation, it's a suspected broken wrist, and you just feel for the individual," Nicks said.

On the topic of potentially bringing in extra time in the case of an in-season draw, Nicks was undecided.


"I don't know. Is it a positive that we end up with two points each? It'd be an exciting thing to watch, if it went to extra time or golden goal. But again, the game's a good game. We don't need to change the rules. We change too many rules," Nicks said.
For Brisbane coach Chris Fagan, the situation was somewhat more bemusing.

"Happy to get two points rather than no points," Fagan said.

"I'm happy with it the way that it is. We wouldn't have had many petrol tickets left anyway ... so I'm pretty happy with didn't have to play extra time."


Fagan was willing to find the positives in the result following an onslaught of injuries that have opened the door for younger players.

A third Lion in a week made their debut on Sunday, Shadeau Brain joining Bruce Reville and Logan Morris seven days ago in playing his first senior game.

"It hasn't been a good few weeks for us with all the injuries that we've got ... but there's always a silver lining to a dark cloud," Fagan said.


"The last few weeks have seen Bruce Reville, Logan Morris and Shadeau Brain come into the team and they all look like they've got something to offer at AFL level. So through this little bit of adversity, hopefully we can develop more depth in our team.

"How far it can take us this year I'm not sure, but it's a good thing for the club in the long run."