North forwards stop season going south - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

North forwards stop season going south

By Adam Cooper 10/05/2009 09:36:23 AM Comments (0)

North Melbourne coach Dean Laidley says his forward line is a work in progress despite producing an amazing display of efficiency in the win over Port Adelaide.

Over the first three quarters the Kangaroos booted 15 goals without a miss at Etihad Stadium on Saturday night, and that unerring accuracy was ultimately crucial in the five-point win, 20.5 (125) to 18.12 (120).

North's victory has them back among the cluster of sides occupying spaces three to 13 separated by one game.

The kicking performance came from a side that had averaged 10 goals a game in its first six games and had a conversion rate under 50 per cent.

Laidley said he was too busy in the coaches' box to notice the perfect run, but his Port counterpart Mark Williams clearly thought the accuracy was pivotal.

"I'm not sure how many games have ever had 15 goals in a row scored against you without any points, but there's one for the records," Williams said.

Laidley said the return of Aaron Edwards (three goals), after a club-imposed suspension for a driving offence, had been important to getting the right combination in attack.

"We really missed him in those first four rounds through his own stupidity really," Laidley said.

"We still only kicked 11 goals last week (in the loss to Collingwood), but the forward line functioned a hell of a lot better (last) night after playing consecutively together, because our forward line hasn't played a lot of footy together.

"When you take (Corey) Jones, (Shannon) Grant, (Nathan) Thompson out, who are all seasoned campaigners and you're trying to get the right mix together, they need time to work together."

"Hopefully we can give them that."

North will have little time to relish their best win of the season, as they have personnel concerns ahead of Saturday's game against unbeaten Geelong.

Midfielder Brady Rawlings is a 50-50 prospect after he hurt a leg at training, and Campbell injured his hamstring in the last quarter.

Veteran Adam Simpson is also on report, for making front-on contact on Kane Cornes with a bump that left the Port midfielder with a shoulder injury.

Meanwhile, Laidley said it was time young gun Jack Ziebell was rewarded with a Rising Star nomination after another eye-catching performance.

"He's from North Melbourne, so people probably don't know about him," he said.

"The kid's going to be a superstar, I'm not afraid to say that because his work ethic, the way he attacks the football, has been fantastic.

"He's a leader in his own right at the football club already, just by the way he goes about it."

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