The Club’s VFL side have run out seven-point winners in their first practice match of 2024, defeating Richmond at Punt Road Oval.

A hot start saw the Pies lead by more than four goals at quarter time, as a new-look midfield group got first hands on the ball.

A fightback by Richmond in the second half narrowed the margin, however the Pies did enough to hang on, with the final score finishing 96-89.

Hutchinson catches the eye

In his first official game in Collingwood colours, Wonthaggi Power recruit Jack Hutchinson was a standout up forward with three goals. The tall started with a bang, kicking the opening two goals of the game via set shots on a tight angle, before a strong contested mark shortly after. A near spectacular grab in the second quarter was followed by a fantastic goal assist, before a strong mark on the three-quarter time siren saw him kick truly for his third. In his debut season in the VFL, Hutchinson is set to be one to watch in 2024.

New-look midfield group impresses

The Pies’ new look midfield group stood out during the hit out at Punt Road, with fresh faces impressing in their first games in the black and white. SSP selections Lachie Sullivan and Jack Bytel were fantastic both with their composure and ball use, as did Wonthaggi recruit Ryan Sparkes. Josh Carmichael showed some trademark strength in the contest, while new VFL recruit Ned Long was also explosive around stoppages.

Jiath’s athleticism on display

The Club’s second pick in last year’s AFL National Draft, Tew Jiath has impressed this summer with his athleticism across the half-back line. The 18-year-old showed glimpses during his short amount of game time in last week’s AFL match simulation against North Melbourne, and again displayed his powerful running ability against Richmond on Tuesday. The right-footer on multiple occasions ran away from his opponents and delivered well by foot, while also providing a strong voice in the defensive fifty.

Glover shows versatility

One of the most experienced players in Tuesday’s squad, Sam Glover highlighted his valuable versatility as a utility in the win. Starting the game as the side’s deepest defender, Glover repelled many of Richmond’s forward entries early on. He then moved into the forward fifty for the later stages of the game, kicking a crucial goal in the final quarter to settle the team on the scoreboard.

Goal Kickers:

Jack Hutchinson 3, Patrick Farrant 3, Lachie Sullivan 2, Sam Glover 2, Jack Bytel, Ed Allan, Joe Richards, Nathan Krueger

The VFL side’s next practice match will be on March 15 against Port Melbourne at Victoria Park. The game will start from 4pm, with the Club’s AFL team taking on Sydney at the MCG in Round One later that evening.