Woosha not panicked by Magpies' hiding - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Woosha not panicked by Magpies' hiding

By Justin Chadwick 08/02/2009 03:26:57 PM Comments (0)

West Coast coach John Worsfold says it's too early to panic despite his side's insipid 62-point loss to Collingwood in the opening match of the AFL pre-season competition.

The Eagles, who won just four games last season, were outgunned all over the field by a near full-strength Collingwood outfit missing only Paul Medhurst, Anthony Rocca, Tyson Goldsack and Sean Rusling from their best 22.

In contrast, West Coast entered the match minus the likes of Adam Hunter, Ashley Hansen, Tyson Stenglein, Beau Waters, Sam Butler, David Wirrpanda, Andrew Embley, Brad Ebert, Adam Selwood and Mark LeCras from their best line-up.

They also started Dean Cox and Daniel Kerr on the bench as their nominated subs, with Cox playing as a key forward when he was introduced into the game late in the second quarter.

"It hurts to lose ... we don't like losing but we've got a lot of improvement to go into that side with players coming back," Worsfold said.

"There's a lot of upside.

"We weren't panicking, it wasn't about trying to lose by four goals or whatever, it was about game-time for players and opportunities for young players and we got all that into them.

"We are not denying we've got plenty of work to do and that's what we are using this next six weeks for.

"Hunter, Hansen, Embley, LeCras, Cox and Kerr, we know what they are going to give us, so it's the opportunity to see what some of the other younger players can do."

While Collingwood escaped the match unscathed, West Coast suffered a double injury blow.

Defender Eric Mackenzie hurt his shoulder and is set to miss several weeks, while Patrick McGinnity could miss the early part of the season proper after suffering a broken jaw from a fierce Nick Maxwell bump.

Collingwood bad boys Alan Didak and Heath Shaw, who were suspended by the club last season for lying about a drink-driving misdemeanour, played starring roles in the Pies' win.

Didak tallied 30 possessions and kicked a goal, while Shaw collected 26 disposals.

"They're quality footballers and I think again they showed that," Collingwood assistant coach Mark Neeld said.

"They are experienced footballers who have performed well at an elite level for quite a period of time, so when you have guys like that in your side I think all goes well."

Collingwood's win sets up a quarter-final clash with the winner of next Sunday's match between Richmond and Fremantle.

The Eagles will travel to Alice Springs on February 27 to tackle the loser of the Geelong/Adelaide encounter.

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