Bailey wary of wounded Tigers - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bailey wary of wounded Tigers

By Melissa Woods 16/04/2010 02:20:04 PM Comments (0)

Melbourne coach Dean Bailey is wary a desperate Richmond may lift to overcome their off-field troubles when the two AFL sides meet at the MCG on Sunday.

After accounting for Adelaide last round to chalk up their first win of the season, the Demons go into the match as overwhelming favourites.

Winless Richmond suspended four players, including their most experienced in Ben Cousins, for disciplinary reasons, and have also lost skipper Chris Newman to a hamstring injury.

But Bailey said they wouldn't be taking the wounded Tigers lightly.

"We've got to be careful about what's happened at Richmond and appreciate the situation they're in," Bailey said at training on Friday.

"Their backs are against the wall so we're expecting a pretty hard game on Sunday.

"If you take an opposition lightly at all, even if it's one per cent, you're giving them a chance to play their way and you're giving them a chance to be confident.

"We will not take them lightly and we will be as well prepared as we can."

Narrowly losing to Collingwood before their victory over the Crows, Bailey called on his players to maintain consistency.

"We've been good in the one-percenters in the last two weeks and we can't afford to drop off against anyone.

"We set a standard the last two weeks so we've got to make sure what we do is the best we can."

The coach confirmed goal-kicking midfielder Colin Sylvia, who broke his jaw in the pre-season and was a late withdrawal last round, was a certain starter.

Despite their status as favourites, Bailey said there was no problem keeping his side in check.

"You're only as good as your next game and people will judge us on how we perform on Sunday regardless of where we are with the betting or who's picked," he said.

"We've got a game, there's two teams and it's a 50-50 ball game at the start.

"Our approach has to be that, we have to come out really firing and our intensity has got to be maintained."

With possibly three Tigers debuting on Sunday, Bailey said the club's recruiting manager Barry Prendergast had been brought in to familiarise the Demons with the new faces.

But Bailey said his players would be more concerned about their own game than the opposition.

"Our attention and our focus will be getting hold of the ball and trying to use it as well as we can.

"We need to get off to a good start and get some scoreboard pressure on early."

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