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VFL: Tapping pleased with practice win

Peter Ryan - AFL Media  April 11, 2015 3:39 PM

VFL: Reid, Witts return in win Hear from Ben Reid and Jarrod Witts as they continue to progress from long-term injuries in Saturday's VFL practice match against North Ballarat at Victoria Park.
Tony Armstrong rebounds from defence during Collingwood's win over North Ballarat in the final VFL practice match of 2015. Photo: Shane Barrie.

Tony Armstrong rebounds from defence during Collingwood's win over North Ballarat in the final VFL practice match of 2015. Photo: Shane Barrie.

All-Australian defender Ben Reid made a successful return in Collingwood's VFL team at Victoria Park on Saturday but it was the standout performance of father-son recruit Darcy Moore that caught the eye. 

After showing he had lost none of his trademark ability to turn defence into attack with his raking left foot kick, Reid sat out the last 15 minutes of the practice match against North Ballarat after playing the equivalent of three quarters of game time. 

Meanwhile, Moore had the small but passionate crowd roaring at times as he bound out of defence and regularly took intercept marks. He dominated the game in the third quarter and looked a class above his opposition. 

Magpies VFL coach Dale Tapping was impressed with Moore and said he was a hard worker who had an exciting future. 

"He's certainly a developing player for the future and is pretty exciting," Tapping told AFL Media.   

Tapping said he expected that Reid would need to build his minutes before moving up to the AFL but was uncertain exactly how much time was required. 

Reid has suffered a horror run with soft tissue injuries and the Magpies are taking a cautious approach with him. 

"He just got tight a few weeks ago and there was nothing too serious but we pulled him back a bit and relaunched him again," Tapping said.

"Today I thought he started really well, marked the ball well and you saw what he is pretty good at."

Tapping said as soon as Reid regained his confidence he would be a good performer again in the AFL. 

The performance of Nathan Freeman was also heartening for the Magpies. The No.10 selection in the 2013 National Draft showed his ability throughout the game as he looks to build continuity after hamstring injuries ruined last season.

"He's just starting to express himself more," Tapping said.

"He's got some really strong athletic attributes. Let's hope he turns the corner."

Jarrod Witts improved in the ruck as the game progressed and his tap to Jordan De Goey that started the third quarter was exciting for Collingwood fans. 

The Magpies defeated North Ballarat by 26 points in the final practice match for the year.