Crawford calm despite Hawthorn's streak - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Crawford calm despite Hawthorn's streak

By Roger Vaughan 23/04/2007 05:04:46 PM Comments (0)

Mindful of how last year's AFL season started, Hawthorn veteran Shane Crawford is reading little into his side's April purple patch.

After the round-one shocker against Brisbane, the Hawks have won three straight this month, including Sunday's four-point thriller over Geelong in Launceston.

But the young Hawks opened last year with a 4-1 jump before they lost 12 out of 13.

While Crawford is wary of the win-loss record so far, a year on he has noticed marked improvement in his younger teammates.

"Each week is a really big test for us, because the biggest thing we have to concentrate (on) is our consistency," he said.

"At the moment we seem to be going okay, but this time last year we'd won four games and then our season fell away.

"We've seen a lot of those younger guys stand up, especially pre-season as well.

"They've had a lot more work put into their bodies, it will definitely show through as the season goes on.

"The preparation overall has been better than last year and I have no doubt that will have an influence on how we go."

At 32 and with 271 games to his stellar career, the Brownlow Medallist is easily Hawthorn's most experienced player.

Crawford, often a big kid at heart himself, is enjoying the company of so many younger teammates.

"I make sure I get around them, because they make me feel young," he said.

"You can see the way they move, the way they go about their footy, they're passionate about them and it really lifts everyone.

"It definitely keeps you young....the club is definitely improving and going forward.

"It gives you a spring in your step."

Crawford was among Hawthorn's best on Sunday and kicked a crucial goal in the final term.

He intercepted a handball from Cats ruckman Steven King to bring the Hawks to within three points.

While Crawford initially joked that his goal was "critical", he paid credit to team-mate Luke Hodge for helping set it up.

"The pressure that Luke Hodge applied was critical to us getting a goal from there," Crawford said.

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