Sport AFL Dockers see upside in a classic loss to Cats

Dockers see upside in a classic loss to Cats

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Having just seen his side lose with a stray shot after the siren, you might think Fremantle coach Ross Lyon would be frustrated.

With the finals just three weeks away, surely missing a chance to regain parity on the AFL ladder with a fierce rival, and stay within a win of top spot, would be tough to take.

In fact, David Mundy’s chance after the siren was not the only missed opportunity against Geelong on Saturday night at Simonds Stadium.

Matthew Pavlich’s chance, which sailed from 50 metres to crash into the post, with two minutes to go could have been a match-winner.

There were other chances too in the final term, which yielded Fremantle four goals and seven behinds.

Faced with an AFL ladder that has Fremantle fourth, two games behind Hawthorn, Sydney and Geelong, you might think there would be some frustration for Lyon.

But the unflappable Dockers boss insists not.

Not only was Lyon refusing to be downbeat after his side’s 12.9 (81) to 11.13 (79) loss, he was looking on the bright side.

“We certainly gave them a plan at three-quarter time and the players went to work and showed the sort of footy they can play,” he said.

“We review our games pretty much the same, win or lose. There’s a few more smiles when you win.

“When you give really good effort, it’s really easy to identify what went wrong.

“I thought we did a bit right.”

The closest he came to showing emotion was reflecting on the timing of Mundy’s potentially match-winning kick.

“You don’t want to be kicking to win after the siren from 46 metres out,” he said.

“You try to get it down before then.”

Lyon insisted he wasn’t upset about the potential for a top-two spot gone wanting, instead lowering the bar.

“I would have thought we were play for a top four spot, not top two,” he said, refusing to look ahead to finals.

“I’ve got three home and away games to prepare my team for… and there’s a team called Hawthorn waiting for us next week.”

The four-time grand final coach delighted in goalsneaks Hayden Crozier and first-gamer Max Duffy.

The pair combined for five goals, including the debutant’s first kick in AFL football.