FREMANTLE big man Sean Darcy has set his sights on shouldering the bulk of the ruck load this season to allow Rory Lobb to work his magic in attack.
Darcy looms as a crucial cog for Fremantle this season following the retirement of 211cm ruckman Aaron Sandilands.
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Lobb arrived at Fremantle at the end of 2018 wanting to nail down a spot in the forward line, but he was forced to spend most of last season in the ruck due to injuries to Darcy and Sandilands.
Darcy has enjoyed an uninterrupted pre-season to date, and hopes are high his body is now strong enough to hold up for an entire season.
If the 21-year-old performs well in the ruck this year, it will allow Lobb to feature heavily in a star-studded attack that features Jesse Hogan and Matt Taberner.
"I like doing more ruck than forward," Darcy said on Monday.
"I think (Lobb) will play a little bit more forward, so it might be 60-40, 70-30 (in terms of how much rucking I do)."
Darcy insists he has learned significant lessons from Lobb during their pre-season ruck battles.
"He's a quality player, he pushes me around, I've got to chase him around the whole training session," Darcy said.
"It improves me.
"I've worked closely with Rory for the whole pre-preason. I'm just trying to pick his running patterns and things like that, to improve as much as I can."
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Brett Bewley won his second 2km time trial of the pre-season on Monday, with the emerging midfielder leading the race to earn a wing spot in round one.
The top five was the same as the time trial held on November 20, with Bewley beating out Andrew Brayshaw, Griffin Logue, Blake Acres, and Ethan Hughes.