West Coast ruckman Nic Naitanui has revealed his determination to not comply with Todd Goldstein to the aim sq. in Monday night time’s loss to North Melbourne was a tactical transfer slightly than a scarcity of effort.
With the Eagles trailing by 4 factors and simply over three minutes remaining on the clock, Goldstein pushed ahead and took a giant contested mark.
Naitanui was greater than 50 metres away on the time, with the next aim to Goldstein sealing a shock 10-point win for the Kangaroos and consigning West Coast to its third straight loss.
Followers and skilled commentators have been fast to criticise Naitanui for not following his man to the aim sq. at such a crucial level within the match.
However Naitanui stated it was a tactical name.
“Any ruckman from junior degree to senior degree, you get again to the (aim) line,” Naitanui stated.
“However for me I used to be rolling the cube. We knew it was a late stage within the sport. We have been down by 4 factors, so in the event that they missed we have been coming straight up the heart and I might be there to get it going.
“Sadly my man took the mark and kicked the aim. These are the choices you make on sport day and you must dwell with them.”
Naitanui will rejoice his 200-game milestone in Sunday’s conflict with the Crows at Adelaide Oval.
The eighth-placed Eagles (8-8) have been written off as premiership fancies following losses to the Bulldogs (55 factors), Sydney (92 factors), and North Melbourne (10 factors).
However Naitanui is adamant they’ll nonetheless win the flag, and says they are going to be aiming for a similar aim subsequent yr as nicely.
“We’re nonetheless within the eight. We’re nonetheless an opportunity,” Naitanui stated.
“Folks can write us off. Folks have been writing us off for a very long time. Folks have been writing me off for a very long time, and I am nonetheless sitting right here. I’ll do every little thing I can.
“I do know guys draw back from speaking about premierships, however you’ve got nonetheless bought Andrew Gaff, Brad Sheppard, and Naitanui in that crew who nonetheless need what three quarters of that crew have gotten.
“There is no approach we’re writing off this yr (or) subsequent yr. We nonetheless need to get it completed.”
Naitanui is averaging a career-high 15.3 possessions and 6.9 clearances per sport this season, and is an opportunity to land his third All-Australian jersey.
Not unhealthy for a 31-year-old who has undergone two knee reconstructions.
“I am fairly proud to have the ability to make it there,” Naitanui stated of sport No.200.
“I’ve had lots of surgical procedures in my time – my shoulders, my knees, and every little thing in between.
“It has been powerful. It has been a protracted journey. I’ve seen guys that I began my profession with or who’ve are available later get to this milestone earlier than me.”