Main content

Jack 'doesn't get much' from umps: Dimma

Dimma on injured Tigers and that free kick count The Richmond coach gives an update on which players will return
Jack Riewoldt kicked two goals against the Bombers - AFL,Richmond Tigers,Damien Hardwick
Jack Riewoldt kicked two goals against the Bombers

FRUSTRATED Richmond coach Damien Hardwick believes Tigers spearhead Jack Riewoldt is getting a raw deal from umpires.

In its eight-point win over Essendon at the MCG on Friday night, the reigning premier lost the free kick count 27-15 and a candid Hardwick said the whistle blowers had overlooked some holding tactics by Bomber defenders on Riewoldt.

TIGERS V BOMBERS Full match coverage and stats 

Riewoldt, who followed a 10-goal haul against Gold Coast with just two against Essendon, gave away three free kicks in the second quarter, each of which appeared warranted, but didn't receive any himself as Michael Hurley performed a superb nullifying job. 

"It was a frustrating night, there’s no doubt," Hardwick said when asked about the free kick disparity.

"Once again it's not the free kicks that we give away – the vast majority, 80 per cent, (of those) are there – but it’s the ones we don't get that probably I find a little bit frustrating.

WATCH Dusty dominates Dons in a devastating display

"I look at Jack tonight and I thought, 'You know what – he doesn’t get much.' Hmm. 

"And I look at the other end and think, 'Ooh, I wish he was playing (at) the other end.'

"Once again, it's a very, very hard game to adjudicate. The ball was played in our half early days.

"Jack normally perseveres with that. He doesn't blame, doesn't complain – he just gets on with it and jumps at the ball.

"It is what it is. Not much we can do about it. Hopefully we’ll get a better result next week."

'G WIZS' MAGIC CONTINUES Five talking points

Next week, for their final round clash with the Western Bulldogs at the MCG, the League leaders hope to select a near full-strength side in their last hit-out before the finals.

Hardwick said his team would regain skipper Trent Cotchin (hamstring), fellow midfielder Dion Prestia (hamstring) and defender David Astbury (Achilles) for the Saturday afternoon clash, while Kane Lambert (ankle) and Dan Butler (ankle) are likely to be available for the club’s first final.

"Dion trained today and ran well, 'Cotch' trained today and ran well, and Dave the same, so those three will come back," he said.

"Lambert will probably miss another one, I'd say. 'Butts' is probably a couple of weeks away as well. They're on the mend."

WATCH Damien Hardwick's post-match media conference 

The Tigers weren’t at their electrifying best against the Bombers, and perhaps were never going to be, given the loss of key players.

They seemingly had the game under control with a 33-point buffer early in the last quarter before conceding the last four goals as Essendon made a frantic bid to keep its finals hopes alive. 

However, Hardwick naturally remains optimistic. 

"We’ll get the majority of our best side up and going next week, get them back playing together and get a little bit of that clunkiness out (of our game) that we’re probably seeing at the moment," he said. 

"We’re not playing our best footy, but we think it’s not too far away …

"A lot of that clunkiness can be attributed to the way (Essendon) played. Their pressure was quite high throughout the night so our ball movement was a little bit scratchy, but we probably didn't use the ball as well as we normally would."