Lions pass grade, but more to do: Voss - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lions pass grade, but more to do: Voss

By Laine Clark 01/06/2009 07:31:52 PM Comments (0)

The mid-year report card may have already received a pass mark from Michael Voss.

But the Brisbane Lions coach has warned his club they "haven't achieved anything yet" despite cruising in the AFL top four ahead of Saturday night's clash with Carlton at the Gabba.

As the halfway point of his first regular season with the reins looms, Voss likes what he sees of the rebuilding Lions before they take on the Blues for the second time in as many months.

However, with a whopping seven teams - including Carlton - just one win behind the fourth-placed Lions, Voss isn't patting himself on the back just yet.

"I think a pass mark is being in the eight. We've certainly achieved that," Voss said when asked if he would give their first half a pass mark.

"We've got a chasing pack. There's not a lot of room to breathe in this competition right now.

"You get what you deserve and we are where we deserve.

"We've sort of clunked our way through it sometimes but we've found a way to win and that's made the group a little bit more resilient in pressure situations.

"(But) the reality is that we haven't achieved anything yet, it's round 10."

A hard-marking Voss may not say it, but the Lions have exceeded expectations considering their horrific injury toll.

Despite being without their specialist ruckmen Matthew Leuenberger and Jamie Charman as well as key defenders Daniel Merrett and Joel Patfull, the Lions have racked up an impressive 6-4 record.

A player that arguably shouldn't be there at all has been the most recent stand-out - small forward Rhan Hooper.

The youngster - who looked like he was would be sacked before being fined $40,000 for disciplinary breaches in the pre-season - kicked four goals to shine in the 19-point win over the Kangaroos on Saturday.

"As a small forward when you get the shots you've got to kick them," Voss said.

"It's the difference between an okay game and a very good game - and Rhan had a very good game.

"It was great to see him get the rewards for some of the work he's put in during the past month.

"That sets him up to hopefully strike a bit of form in coming weeks."

Merrett (ankle) and Patfull (jaw) are again unavailable this week while a question mark still remains over tagger Troy Selwood (concussion) despite making a return in the reserves last weekend.

But classy midfielder Travis Johnstone is expected to be slotted straight back in against the blues after his best on ground reserves performance last weekend.

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