Bad old questions return for Dockers - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bad old questions return for Dockers

By Roger Vaughan 07/08/2010 07:18:16 PM Comments (0)

After so much improvement this AFL season, some bad old questions are again being asked of Fremantle.

Can they perform on the road? Are they the real deal? Can they score consistently if Matthew Pavlich is well held?

Saturday's 54-point loss to North Melbourne at Etihad Stadium means the Dockers have lost three of their past five games, just three weeks out from the finals.

They remain fifth, but have a massive game at home next Saturday against Sydney, followed by Hawthorn in Launceston and Carlton at Subiaco - the three teams below them in the eight.

Dockers coach Mark Harvey refused to use their long list of key injured players as an excuse, but admitted the weight of possessions and marks against them on Saturday was an issue.

He was also concerned that 15 of 19 North goals came from turnovers.

"You never sense being beaten by (that) margin, it's just hard to work out going from playing like we did last week," he said.

"Forget about personnel ... to play like that, we got punished from turnovers.

"You may as well just let them drive straight through you when you do that."

A week ago, Harvey said he had praised his team for arguably their best football of the season as they took West Coast apart in the Western Derby.

On Saturday they rallied well from a poor first term to only trail by 11 points at halftime, but from there fell away horribly.

"Does this mean we go back, play on Subiaco and reverse the form? We don't want to be doing that," Harvey said.

"We've done a lot of things to address (form) on the road and we just seem to be falling back into some habits that have caused us issues in the past.

Harvey was hopeful star ruckman Aaron Sandilands and possibly Chris Mayne would return from injury for the Swans.

But the problems suddenly go deeper than ins and outs as the Dockers again must prove their credibility.

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