Worsfold calls for cap on AFL rotations - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Worsfold calls for cap on AFL rotations

By Justin Chadwick 31/03/2010 09:19:30 PM Comments (0)

Famous moments such as Leo Barry's leaping mark to help seal Sydney's epic grand final win in 2005 may become even rarer if the AFL doesn't step in to cap interchange rotations, according to West Coast coach John Worsfold.

Worsfold has called for a cap on rotations of about 20 per quarter after the 16 AFL clubs averaged a whopping 113 interchanges in round one this season.

The figure more than doubled the average recorded in round one of 2007 and Worsfold, who feared the number could spiral to 150 if a cap isn't implemented, said the upward trend was robbing the game of traditional match-ups and spectacular pack marks.

"As players are more fatigued sometimes you'll see the real special things in the game," Worsfold said on Wednesday.

"You'll see the tired long kick into the forward line where a player will find that little bit of extra energy to take a hang.

"The way it is at the moment, the way it's zipping around, you're not really getting to see as much of that,

"I'd like to see it (rotations) capped at some point.

"I haven't given it a huge amount of thought but my gut feel is looking at maybe (capping it at) 20 per quarter, which gives you plenty.

"I don't think that would put players at risk of injuries.

"You know that gives you 80 (rotations) for the game, which is sort of about where it was averaging a couple of years ago."

But Fremantle coach Mark Harvey, whose team made 125 rotations in their 56-point win over Adelaide last Sunday, cautioned against making knee-jerk reactions.

"If you want to extend the bench then possibly (I will support a cap)," Harvey said.

"The idea (of a cap), the principle, is OK.

"The reasoning why - I'm not sure why we are looking at it.

"I thought when I looked back at round one there was some exciting football ... so why are we trying to hinder the game when it's going forward?"

However, Harvey did agree that it was in the best interests of the game to have the best players out on the field for longer.

"From our point view we'd like to have our best players out there 80, 90, 95 per cent of the time," he said.

"In the end you don't want your rotations just for the sake of having a rest, you want it to try to make it an advantage for you from a team aspect."

Meanwhile, West Coast sharpshooter Mark LeCras is almost certain to miss Saturday night's match against Port Adelaide with a hamstring complaint.

LeCras pulled up sore from the Eagles' 32-point loss to Brisbane last week and Worsfold conceded the 23-year-old was highly unlikely to play against the Power.

"He's still a bit sore in his hamstring so probably unlikely to play this week considering how it's feeling at the moment," Worsfold said.

Worsfold said he would consider shifting Beau Waters up forward to cover for the absence of LeCras, while defender Scott Selwood is a strong chance to earn a call-up after starring in the WAFL last weekend.

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