AFL 2020: Richmond -Midseason Report Card

They have overcome some hurdles to be well placed for a back half assault on the finals. How has Bozza judged their season to date?

Richmond’s progress in 2020 can be charted in the distinctly different moods with which Damien Hardwick has confronted the media. The normally cheeky and playful coach has completed a full circle this season from happy after Round One to surly after Round Two then exasperated and confrontational after Round Six and back again. How has Bozza rated the performances that have caused the many changing moods of the Tigers Coach?


Can’t get enough footy? Check out more of our Pinch Hitters Mid Season Report Cards here.


What’s gone right

Much like 2019, despite injuries to key personnel and intense scrutiny about their form, the Tigers are perfectly poised for an assault on the back half of the season. Remarkably, despite the countless inches of newsprint devoted to reporting their demise, they sit just two points outside the Top Four after Round Nine.

When you consider that this has been achieved despite only finding anything near their best twice, they have reason to be extremely pleased with their efforts. While form is not a tap that can be turned on and off, it is the promise of them rediscovering their best that is perhaps the most positive aspect of the front half of the season.


What’s gone wrong

It is fair to say that the interruption to the 2020 season had a distinctly negative effect on the Tigers onfield results. After doing enough in Round One to beat the Blues, they were a different outfit altogether when the competition restarted 12 weeks later.

Damien Hardwick lamented a dewey surface when his team managed just 36 points in their Round Two return. A repeat performance the following week suggested the problem was more to do with his players than the MCG ground staff.

Losing six premiership players on the eve of entering hublife in Queensland was also a blow to their premiership defence. It was also a blow to everybody who was unfortunate enough to watch them defeat Sydney the following weekend with a score of 4.10 (34).


Standout player

Dustin Martin

The Tigers don’t have many players in the Top 20 of any of the AFL’s key statistical categories. Their leading possession winner ranks 38th in the competition, their leading tackler 63rd, their leading uncontested possession winner sits 22nd. Martin who leads the Tigers in Clearances and Contested Possession ranks 45th and 28th in the League for both.

While Tom Lynch is 16th for goals and 17th for marks, and Shai Bolton third for Inside 50s (a category Martin is ranked seventh), we feel that neither player has shone as mildly as Martin. A lot like his team, Martin has shown glimpses of what he can do and, while there is plenty of room for improvement across the board, he has done so more often and more impressively than his team mates.


Run home

Rd 10BrisbaneMetricon Stadium
Rd 11Port AdelaideAdelaide Oval
Rd 12Gold CoastThe Gabba
TBCAdelaideTBC
TBCEssendonTBC
TBCFremantleTBC
TBCGeelongTBC
TBCWest CoastTBC

With four of their last eight to come against top eight opposition, there is still some work to do for the Tigers to claim a top eight berth. They will have their eyes on a higher prize though and we will get an insight into how realistic these hopes are with games against the top two teams next up.


Final Grade

B-

They are well placed after nine rounds but will have to find their best more consistently if they are to take advantage of it.


Can’t get enough footy? Check out more of our Pinch Hitters Mid Season Report Cards here.

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