Mick Malthouse Gives His Thoughts On The AFL Cracking Down On Runners

From The Hot Breakfast

11 February 2018

Image: Getty

Herald Sun journalist Tom Browne joined The Hot Breakfast this morning for the first time in 2018 as the show's AFL news-breaker this season.

First cab off the rank: the AFL have sent out a directive late last week explaining to clubs that during the JLT Community Series runners will have their on-field time limited.

They will only be able to access the field after goals and have to be off the ground before the bounce.

"I think the coaches need to get their head around handing over the responsibility to the captain and the players on the ground," Luke Darcy explained.

"To be honest, every time a message came out to me it felt like it was a minute too late - and it was usually just personal abuse," he laughed.

The Hot Breakfast were then joined by AFL coaching royalty in Mick Malthouse.

"I don't think it's such a bad idea," Mick said.

"The best thing that could happen here is the captain becomes more influential. He needs to be a great coordinator and he needs to be on the same page as the coach.

"The game moves so quickly - by the time you've given a message it's almost obsolete or you need to re-change it, or the player has just kicked a goal and he needs to stay out there!

"I really believe we've diluted the captain's role a little bit.

"I'm an admirer or rugby union - and to a lesser degree, cricket - because the captain controls what's happening on the field at the moment."

Eddie McGuire asked whether this would diminish the influence of Collingwood premiership captain Nick Maxwell who has moved back to the club after a stint of being the runner for GWS.

"You can take the boy out of the backline but you can't take the backline out of the boy," Mick joked.

"He was a great player at filling the hole so why was he ever going to change as a runner!"


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