Ratten wants fair go for midfield stars - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Ratten wants fair go for midfield stars

26/08/2010 07:02:06 PM Comments (0)

Carlton coach Brett Ratten has urged the umpires to give his ball-winning midfielders the protection they deserve in Friday night's ladder-shaping AFL clash with Fremantle at Subiaco Oval.

When the teams last met in round 13, Ratten was highly critical of the negating tactics used by Dockers veteran Adam McPhee to impede Chris Judd.

The Blues skipper was left so frustrated by the continual harassment that he elbowed Matthew Pavlich in the head after being tackled to the ground.

Judd escaped suspension over the incident but Ratten gave a non-too-subtle hint to the umpiring department that he wanted this match tightly adjudicated.

"I think McPhee will go to Judd again and he'll try that tactic around stoppages and things like that," Ratten said in Perth on Thursday.

"It will be interesting how it's policed I suppose, that will be the interesting one.

"Ball players should be rewarded."

But Ratten isn't the only one concerned about niggling tactics, with Fremantle coach Mark Harvey also wanting his match-winners to receive a fair go.

"Just make sure that we're watching everything, (Aaron) Sandilands, Pavlich, (Stephen) Hill ... those guys," Harvey said.

Ratten backed down in his criticism of Fremantle's resting policy, claiming the Blues may have done the same thing if they were in the Dockers' shoes.

Harvey was left fuming earlier this week when Ratten questioned the Dockers' wisdom of resting seven players in last week's humiliating 116-point loss to Hawthorn.

The Dockers recalled 10 players for Friday night, with Pavlich, Paul Hasleby, McPhee, Roger Hayden, Sandilands, David Mundy, Hill, Chris Mayne, Anthony Morabito and Nat Fyfe returning to the side.

Tim Ruffles is out after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament, while Kepler Bradley, Byron Schammer, Steven Dodd, Ryan Murphy, Rhys Palmer, Clayton Hinkley, Clancee Pearce, Justin Bollenhagen and Zac Clarke were all dropped.

"I think at the end of the game when the siren goes, it will be a great move or it will be one that will be looked at," Ratten said.

"So I suppose if we were in a similar position ... (and had the chance to) rest players and do something similar, we probably would."

The Blues welcomed back Chris Yarran from injury and also handed recalls to Aaron Joseph and Shaun Hampson.

Andrew Walker, Richard Hadley and Sam Jacobs were all omitted.

Fremantle beat Carlton by nine points in round 13 and Harvey accused the Blues of underestimating the Dockers in that match, much to the surprise of Ratten.

"We never under-rate any team, and especially Fremantle," Ratten said.

"We lost (Marc) Murphy early, (Matthew) Kreuzer did an ACL, (Michael) Barlow had the ball on a string, (Chris) Tarrant didn't let the wind through.

"So they had a great night and we kicked very inaccurately ... I think we kicked 2.12 and a couple out on the full in the first half."

Fremantle will earn a home final if they beat the Blues on Friday night.

But Carlton will sneak into the top six at the expense of the Dockers if they beat Fremantle and Collingwood defeats Hawthorn.

The Blues bowed out of the finals at the first hurdle last year but Ratten said the club had adjusted their training loads in order to have the group in peak shape for September.

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