Aker comments dismissed by Lions - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Aker comments dismissed by Lions

By Laine Clark 28/07/2010 05:32:30 PM Comments (0)

At just 20, Brisbane Lions' Rising Star nominee Tom Rockliff still has much to learn in the AFL, but it seems he has already worked out one of the game's conundrums - Jason Akermanis.

Just 15 games into his AFL career, Rockliff showed the poise of a veteran on Wednesday when he deflected the latest barbs aimed at the Lions by the dumped midfielder.

A week after sensationally being sacked by the Western Bulldogs, Akermanis took aim at his first club by questioning why ex-teammate and current Lions coach Michael Voss was exempt from a sweeping review.

Lions chairman Tony Kelly made the call during a horror slide that has now blown out to 12 losses in 13 games.

They will equal a club record of eight consecutive losses if they fall to Melbourne at the Gabba on Saturday night.

"Chairman Tony Kelly has ordered a complete review at season's end of all footy operations with - surprise, surprise - the only one exempt being Voss," Akermanis wrote in his Herald Sun column on Wednesday.

"I have accused Tony of having a man crush on Vossy and this hasn't changed my mind.

"Sometimes the coach is unfairly a target, but he will always be accountable for certain things, such as the direct team around him."

But Rockliff could only smile when asked about the column.

"Aker has his comments on everything - that's his choice to comment on things," Rockliff said.

"It's not really his (Voss) fault that we are in this position.

"He (Voss) has always been positive this year, he reads the playing group pretty well.

"We probably owe him. Hopefully we can show him in the next five weeks."

Voss told reporters in Brisbane this week that he didn't expect to escape the review.

"It's not as if the board doesn't constantly review the coach. I am always getting reviewed," Voss said.

"Every Saturday afternoon when I walk out there I get reviewed."

Akermanis also speculated that Justin Sherman was out of sorts this year.

"The support around him from the top down looks to have dried up," Akermanis said.

But Rockliff said: "I think everyone gets the same support around the club.

"All the coaches are accessible - we are a pretty open footy club.

"I think Justin has got pretty good support and he has his family up here which is also good for him."

Rockliff earned his Rising Star nomination following a 26-disposal display in the loss to Richmond in round 13 in June.

And he will have to be at his best again this weekend to help hold out the resurgent Demons - a side Voss has described as a future "superpower".

Coincidentally, the Lions' horror run began with a shock loss to Melbourne in round five.

"Melbourne started the rot but hopefully we can turn it around against them," Rockliff said.

"(But) it's our own fault that we are in this situation at the moment - it's the playing group.

"There are too many people searching for excuses for us. We know it is up to us to turn it around."

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