Cotchin secures Rising Star nomination - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Cotchin secures Rising Star nomination

17/06/2008 07:40:28 PM Comments (0)

Perhaps the most exciting aspect of Trent Cotchin's AFL debut is he is well below full fitness.

The 18-year-old Richmond midfielder was nominated for the Rising Star award after impressing again in Sunday night's win over Melbourne at Telstra Dome.

Cotchin made his debut in round eight against Geelong and has not been out of the senior team since.

Recruited with the No.2 pick in the national draft last year, Cotchin's pre-season was ruined because of an Achilles tendon injury.

"I'd love to be in a situation where he's got the full summer up," said coach Terry Wallace.

"I don't think there's a player in the competition, right from the top levels of the very best, who can ever really perform at their best without having that proper pre-season.

"What we're getting out of Trent at the moment is only probably 60-70 per cent of what you'd be capable of getting out of him with a pre-season behind him.

"When we started the season was when he started his pre-season, that's the way we looked at it ... he was a long, long, long way behind the others."

Cotchin needed a month at the start of the regular season to build up his fitness.

He was preparing for another run with Richmond's VFL affiliate Coburg when wet weather encouraged the Tigers to make a game-day decision and promote him for the Geelong match.

If the unusual circumstances of his senior debut flustered Cotchin, he did a good job of hiding his nerves - he goalled with his first kick.

"I was a fair way off in my pre-season and thought I had a long way to go, luckily I was giving the opportunity a little earlier than I thought," he said.

"I think I've taken it and hopefully I can keep improving.

"I'm really enjoying it - even more when we win - just to be with your idols as a young fella is really exciting.

"You've got to make sure you're not caught up in it and play your natural game."

Thanks to the wrecked pre-season, Cotchin's initial aim this year was to make his senior debut.

Now he wants to stay in the side and have an influence on the game, something that is fast becoming a matter of course.

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