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Essendon: ‘Got found out a bit’- Essendon young gun’s hone...

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Published Time: 19.05.2024 - 23:02:51 Modified Time: 19.05.2024 - 23:02:51

"It's always a good learning opportunity. I was a bit frustrated because I knew what he was going to bring and I didn't put myself in positions to be able to combat that enough in the first half, so I was a bit disappointed. I'll look at it and be better next time. Essendon


Reviewing the matchup at half-time, Perkins was able to adjust his focus and rely on more of a team model in the midfield to help halt North Melbourne's engine room ensemble.

"My best probably wasn't strong enough around the ball early on in the game. When you're on a player like Luke Davies-Uniacke you can get found out a bit," Perkins told Zero Hanger. 

"He was probably beating me to the ball a bit. I think as the game went on I started to resurrect that a bit and started getting involved a bit more in the forward half.

"It's always a good learning opportunity. I was a bit frustrated because I knew what he was going to bring and I didn't put myself in positions to be able to combat that enough in the first half, so I was a bit disappointed. I'll look at it and be better next time.

"That's what you're wrestling with the whole time when you're on a player like that, not losing sight of what makes you a good player as well.

"I probably got a bit focused on him too much, then we lost our balance around the midfield a little. But I think as a unit we started to turn that in the second half."

Perkins was one of the Bombers' best by the end of the victory, amassing 22 disposals, six tackles, 11 contested possessions and a goal to leave his impact across the front half of the field.

Joined by fellow emerging midfielders Ben Hobbs and Elijah Tsatas through the middle of the field, Essendon's young core was able to combine to give fans a glimpse into what's in store for the years to come.

Breakout Bomber Sam Durham and onballer Jye Caldwell were also key contributors in the midfield as captain Zach Merrett was kept to a season-low 21 disposals against the Roos, with the absence of Parish placing more reliance on Essendon's young crop of ball winners.

"It's really good. We're all pretty good mates, so it's good to be in there together," Perkins said of the club's young midfield contingent.

"We're really confident we can cover a player like [Parish] going out and bring somebody in. So Hobbys and Elijah today. It was good to see them around the ball.

"I think we're building every week. Each week we play together as that core unit I think we're going to see lots of improvement."

Essendon, now second on the ladder, could extend their undefeated run to six games this Saturday when they take on Richmond for the annual Dreamtime at the 'G clash.

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Like most big stages, the occasion is one that has Perkins champing at the bit.

"It's always a big occasion for the club, Dreamtime. It's a great opportunity," Perkins said.

"All the indigenous work, what we learn and the that come and talk to us during the week... it's a great occasion to put their culture on show at the MCG.

"It's a great game to be a part of and we're looking to keep the wins coming."

The past two weeks have seen Perkins seamlessly slot back into Brad Scott's system following a month on the sidelines due to a hamstring strain.

"I've been dialling up in being really honest how my body has been feeling when talking with physios and making sure I've got no little issues going into training and games. I'm getting really on top of that," he said.

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