RICHMOND coach Damien Hardwick says there were a few hard truths told at half time in Friday night's big come-from-behind win over the Sydney Swans.
The visitors trailed by 32 points at the main break, with the Swans blanketing their opponents and not allowing them to run and carry the football.
All that changed after the interval, when Richmond kicked 11 goals to three to register a fourth interstate win for the season, having overcome Fremantle in Perth a fortnight ago.
Hardwick paid tribute to his senior players such as captain Trent Cotchin and Brett Deledio.
He also singled out spearhead Jack Riewoldt for leading the turnaround effort.
"We had a few probably stern words at half time to make sure we came out with the right attitude," Hardwick told reporters after the match.
"We went over a few things that we weren't doing well.
"I thought the guys showed great poise and character to come back."
Cotchin was huge for the Tigers, leading from the front with 27 possessions and five marks. Defender Alex Rance kept Lance Franklin well in check for most of the night and Troy Chaplin did the same against Kurt Tippett.
After a poor start to 2015 when the club dropped four of its first six games, the Tigers have been one of the best-performing sides since, winning five of their past six.
Moreover, the result in front of 37,579 fans on a chilly, slippery night at the SCG maintained the Tigers' impressive road record, having come away from Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide and now Sydney with four premiership points this year.
Asked what had been behind the turnaround, Hardwick said having a more stable line up in recent weeks had helped the team play a "more cohesive brand of football".
"We have started to get that," Hardwick said.
"The players have probably got a greater understanding of what we are after in certain situations.
"For the fair majority I thought we played some really good football tonight, which is pleasing for us and more importantly pleasing for our fans to see back home."
Richmond sits sixth with a 7-5 win-loss record heading into next Saturday afternoon's match against Greater Western Sydney at the MCG.
And with games against lowly Carlton and St Kilda to follow, the Tigers could conceivably be pushing for a top four berth heading into the run home.
However, Hardwick cautioned that recent results such as the Blues' win over the Power showed the competition was so even that any side was capable of winning on any given day.
"If you don't come to play you will get beaten," Hardwick said.
"We play every moment on its merits. The ladder will take care of itself."