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Justin Longmuir looks on the Sonny side of Fremantle star forward Michael Walter’s form


FREMANTLE coach Justin Longmuir insists there’s loads to love about Michael Walters’ 2022 kind regardless of managing solely two targets in 5 video games.

The Dockers are flying with a 4-1 document after three straight wins to sit down second on the ladder, however Walters’ output has been a down level amongst their spectacular begin to the yr.

The 2019 All-Australian has largely been deployed ahead however is averaging solely 13.4 disposals per recreation, his lowest since 2014. The membership’s five-time main goalkicker’s greatest wrestle has been in entrance of objective, showing bereft of confidence from set photographs in Sunday’s win over Essendon.

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Walters, who kicked 40 targets in his All-Australian season three years in the past, has managed solely 2.6 this season and appeared desirous to move off alternatives in opposition to the Bombers.

The 31-year-old frolicked engaged on his goalkicking away from the primary group at Tuesday coaching and was joined by Longmuir. The Freo coach insisted on Wednesday that Walters was taking part in effectively however wanted to re-gain the arrogance to complete off his good work.

Michael Walters handballs for Fremantle in opposition to Essendon in R5, 2022. Image: Getty Pictures

“It’s not just his effort, I’ve been impressed with all of his game except the bit he usually does really, really well and that’s finishing off in front of goal,” Longmuir mentioned.

“What can occur generally is gamers shift their focus to the ending half they usually overlook what’s really getting them the photographs.

“My message is to reaffirm he is doing loads proper and keep in mind what’s essential in his function, to maintain engaged on his ending and that may come. You’ll be able to’t lose sight of his spectacular contest, strain, working patterns and talent to seek out the footy, all that stuff is in good order. I reaffirmed that with him.

“He’s still a concern to the opposition. It’s part of the message I’m selling to him. He’s leading really well, he’s communicating and organizing us really well in the forward line. He’s doing a lot right.”

Longmuir has a extra welcome headache in assault this week, with current Glendinning-Allan medalist Lachie Schultz out of well being and security protocols and more likely to be accessible for choice.

Lachie Schultz reveals off the Glendinning-Allen Medal after spherical three, 2022. Image: AFL Photographs

Bailey Banfield changed Schultz for the Bombers win and offered good ahead strain, ending with two targets from 10 disposals.

“We’ll have to work through it,” Longmuir mentioned about choice for Saturday night time’s residence recreation with 4-1 Carlton. “I feel ‘Shoota’ (Schultz) is in our greatest 22, however we’re proud of the way in which ‘Banners’ (Banfield) went about it on the weekend.

“Four scoring shots, played his role really well. We’ll just have to weigh that up.”

The Dockers can be with out assistant coaches Josh Carr and Matthew Boyd for the Blues recreation after each entered well being and security protocols.

Luke Ryan, Hayden Younger, Michael Frederick and Heath Chapman have been gamers from their greatest 22 absent from group coaching on Wednesday, as Fremantle search sto deal with rising COVID circumstances within the WAFL, together with fringe Docker Connor Blakeley who performed for Peel on the weekend.

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The aforementioned quartet are anticipated again at coaching later within the week, with their separation as a result of contact with the WAFL group, and to be accessible for choice.

“We’ve had to separate the playing group. There’s only 23 players training today, which is mainly based on the WAFL situation,” Longmuir mentioned. “Plenty of our gamers performed at Peel on the weekend, so we have to mitigate that threat, so we have break up our taking part in group up.

“We’ll probably have to do that for the foreseeable future. It’s not the ideal situation for the camaraderie.”



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