Fight left in Tigers

Kyneton coach Mark Adamson.

Kyneton coach Mark Adamson.

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HIS side has dropped out of Bendigo Football League finals contention, but coach Mark Adamson says Kyneton will fight the season right out until the end to lay the platform for next year.

Adamson was confident pre-season the returning Tigers’ curve would continue to spike upwards the more footy his new group continued to play together.

However, after splitting their first eight games 4-4 and being right in finals contention, the Tigers have dropped off the pace, losing their past five games ahead of a home clash with Golden Square at the Kyneton Showgrounds on Saturday.

“There has been a couple of contributing factors as to what’s happened over the past month or so,” Adamson said on Friday.

“We’ve had some injuries to key personnel and we haven’t been able to absorb them.

“Our depth has been really exposed where if we lose a couple of our top 10 players and bring up some reserves or under-18s, that is really significant in our ability to perform at a certain level.”

Kyneton’s struggles to field a consistent line-up week-to-week is highlighted in the fact the 45 players the Tigers have used this season is the most of any club.

“We’ve regularly had five to six changes to the side and just haven’t been able to consolidate enough footy together,” Adamson said.

“But the reality now is I’m looking very closely at the personnel we actually have.

“Some of the guys probably haven’t come up to expectation, whereas some have exceeded expectation, but there are gaps in what we need as a team perspective.

“We obviously hoped at the start of the year the team would come together, but that hasn’t happened to the level we expected.”

Adamson believes injuries to the likes of skipper Michael Rainey, vice-captain Michael Clancy and Luke Edmondson throughout the year, plus the unavailability at times of Dale Ciunik has significantly impacted on the Tigers.

But on the positive, players such as young tall Darcy Harris and Jake Hyland have stepped up to impress the coach.

“These last five weeks, the demands on the players will really increase from a commitment and expectation point of view,” Adamson said.

“It’s important the club wins some more games and finishes the season on a bright note.”

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