Lyon toys with ruck options - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lyon toys with ruck options

By Guy Hand 27/09/2010 10:48:17 PM Comments (0)

St Kilda coach Ross Lyon says he hasn't yet locked in young ruckman Ben McEvoy as injured Michael Gardiner's AFL grand final replay replacement.

With Gardiner set to miss Saturday's showdown with Collingwood at the MCG with a hamstring injury, McEvoy - cruelly dropped from the side which won the preliminary final - was widely touted as a certainty to come into the Saints team.

But Lyon said he was toying with other possible options, including keeping Justin Koschitzke in the ruck after he performed admirably once Gardiner went down.

And 19-year-old ruck-forward Rhys Stanley, who has played just seven AFL matches, could also be in line for a call-up.

Lyon said he was also determined to give Gardiner every chance to recover from the injury, though scans taken on Monday will almost certainly reveal a hamstring problem which will probably end the 31-year-old's AFL career.

"We'll give him (Gardiner) every opportunity to get up, but we know he'll have full support for everyone who runs down the race if that doesn't occur," Lyon told the Ten Network on Monday night.

"Michael's a great person and he wants a premiership medallion around his neck - what he's achieved since he's been at the Saints and what he's brought to the club ... it's been remarkable in driving the group.

"On balance, does Koschitzke stay as a permanent ruck or do we bring in Rhys Stanley, who was really critical in that period that Nick Riewoldt wasn't there ... he might be something we look at."

The Saints players were given the day off on Monday after their post-match recovery on Sunday.

Lyon said the team had put any disappointment from the draw behind them, and were ready to launch at the Magpies for the second time in a week.

"We've rolled on. We're hard-nosed pros, we're excited to be playing in another grand final," he said.

"To have two in two weeks - some people don't get one in 20 years."

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