‘Dusty’s not there to tackle’: Tigers
Richmond assistant coach Justin Leppitsch has conceded the team's defence and tackling pressure was its biggest issue in last week's loss to Collingwood, but he isn't surprised midfield star Dustin Martin is yet to lay a tackle in 2019.
As the Tigers gear up to take on GWS after the 54-point shellacking at the hands of the Pies, Leppitsch said others were in the team to tackle and they needed to do more.
"Dustin's ball-winning ability and what he does around the contest can't really be underestimated, it's such a big thing for us,'' he said.
"It's highlighted when he's tagged and (when) we all collectively as a group haven't defended well, we go to him.
"There is other guys in our team that are there to tackle and haven't been doing it.
"I think collectively as a group we need to lift, it's not just one particular person."
Leppitsch said premiership forward Josh Caddy could be in line to make his return for the injury-hit Tigers.
He said Caddy, who had an ankle injury that impacted his pre-season, was "very close" and a decision would be made after training today.
The question for the Tigers is where Caddy will play - rushed straight back into the AFL or in the VFL.
"We'll find out at training today, he is keen to play,'' Leppitsch said.
"It's one of those ones that we'll get him through the session and they'll make the call.
"He is very close. I would say touch and go at this point.
"He will play somewhere. We have just got to determine - has he done enough training, how does he look today, we have got to put it all together."
Caddy's return would be a personnel boost for the Tigers, who last week lost forward Jack Riewoldt with a wrist injust for a month. Riewoldt's injury followed the season-ending knee injury to key defender Alex Rance.
The Tigers will also be without the suspended Dylan Grimes against the Giants, while Leppitsch said Bachar Houli remained another week away with his hamstring injury.
Leppitsch said Caddy could play Riewoldt's role if he was cleared to return.
"Josh plays a bit of mid as well, but he can definitely play the role that Jack has, he has done that in the past,'' Leppitsch said.
Defender Ryan Garthwaite would also be "in the mix" and the Tigers would see how he pulled up after training.
"If he pulls up well and he goes well he is a good chance to play,'' he said.
Leppitsch acknowledged it would be almost impossible for the Tigers to replace the class of the injured Riewoldt and Rance and needed a group effort to do so.
"They bring the spunk and the spark to our team, they bring the voice and the direction," he said.
"Others have to stand up in that place. It's not easy to replace those guys, you can't take away All-Australians and replace them, it's just impossible to do.
"But it doesn't mean it can't be done, it just means we all have to lift the load a little bit."