Lyon defends Koschitzke's conduct - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lyon defends Koschitzke's conduct

By Roger Vaughan 01/04/2010 07:25:10 PM Comments (0)

St Kilda coach Ross Lyon has defended ruck-forward Justin Koschitzke after his three-match AFL suspension for rough conduct.

Lyon says he wants his players to be physically aggressive, but adds that cannot come at the expense of losing too many personnel through suspensions.

Koschitzke accepted his three-match ban for rough conduct against Nick Malceski during the eight-point win over Sydney last weekend.

"I quite like aggression, I don't think it went too far, but (it's) just finding the balance for the modern game," Lyon said.

"It was a big man playing big, so we're certainly not going to take that away from Justin or anyone within the group.

"But you don't want to be losing too many along the way."

Lyon said the Saints had given away too many free kicks and needed to be better at their stoppage work, but otherwise had done well to open the season with an away win over the Swans.

"It was a really solid win, to go interstate and it was very, very hot," he said.

"They're a good team, I think they're re-emerging team.

"You just know the way they go about it, if you don't bring effort and you don't compete, you can be embarrassed pretty quickly.

"We did all those things, we weren't in perfect form, but we found a way to win and it demonstrated some hunger."

Their next opponents are North Melbourne, who were one of only four teams to beat St Kilda last season when they had an upset win in round 21.

"There were some lessons to learn from it and it stood us in pretty good stead going into the finals," Lyon said.

"There were some issues to come out of it that helped us get going a little bit, but it's a long time between drinks, isn't it, the relevance of it today - bar a few technical things, it isn't great.

"We're coming off a really strong win interstate, we're fit and pretty-much available."

Meanwhile, Lyon is unfazed by talk about the high number of interchanges in some round-one matches.

He says the game is in good shape and no great changes are needed.

"The game is in a great position, it needed this change, it needed the strong press and all those things to force people to get out of their comfort zones," he said.

"The same with us, our ball movement has just gotten quicker and quicker.

"Specifically, the interchange, I know with us it was strongly linked to round one.

"Water finds it own level and I think the interchange will (as well)."

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