Tigers' Cotchin set for big pre-season - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Tigers' Cotchin set for big pre-season

Roger Vaughan 27/10/2010 05:34:53 PM Comments (0)

Young Tiger Trent Cotchin is finally being let off the AFL pre-season leash.

After three restricted off-seasons, the injury-plagued midfielder is set for a full-scale preparation ahead of 2011.

Cotchin returned to training on Wednesday along with the bulk of Richmond's youthful squad.

There are massive wraps at Punt Rd on the 20-year-old, who played 17 games this season for a career total of 42 and is seen as a future club captain.

The Tigers recruited him with the No.2 pick in the 2007 draft, but a succession of leg and hip injuries have interrupted his career so far.

"It's certainly the best he's started, in year one he ran in January, in year two he ran in February and he's out there running and kicking the footy," Richmond assistant coach Wayne Campbell said.

"So certainly as coaches, we're pretty excited by that.

"It's a long way to go, but he's certainly miles ahead of where we was before."

The size of the group that started Richmond training on Wednesday was another sign of where the team's development stands.

Day one of pre-season was for players who have been at the club for no longer than three years.

"That's everyone bar three players for us, so we get them all back soon," Campbell said.

Captain Chris Newman, Shane Tuck and Brett Deledio are the only 100-game players on their list.

One of the big reasons for the trade swap that imported Shaun Grigg from Carlton and sent popular clubman Andrew Collins to the Blues was to bring more experience to the Richmond midfield.

"(Grigg) will be good, he'll just add to our midfield mix, a really big body, a strong runner, (he) can use the footy," said Campbell, Richmond's midfield coach.

"Hopefully he can release some of our better users of the footy.

"We certainly targetted him - we were sad to lose Andy Collins, but Carlton were interested and in the end, it was Andy's choice to go.

"So hopefully we see it as a win-win for both clubs."

Another potential recruit will be delisted Melbourne key position player Brad Miller.

The Tigers hope to recruit Miller partly as a player and partly as a key forward development coach.

"Just some experience ... we're a really young group, we have a young forward line," Campbell said of Miller.

"He's played some footy, he's an outstanding character, an outstanding leader - we just think he can help (Jack) Riewoldt, (Ben) Griffiths and these sorts of guys and play some footy.

"We don't expect him to play 22 games here.

"But that still has to be done, we can rookie-list him."

The Tigers also remain confident they will gain Bachar Houli from Essendon in the pre-season draft.

On day one of pre-season training, the Tigers were immediately into ball work.

Richmond showed some definite signs of improvement this season, rallying from nine-straight losses at the start to finish second-last with six wins.

"We have an enormous amount of improvement to do and that's probably what we want to get out of the year, just move forward, improve and do better than last year, which we think we can do," Campbell said.

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