Jack Riewoldt has struggled to find the form that has seen him dominate the league for over a decade, with the three-time Coleman Medalist having booted just eight goals in 2020.
Riewoldt ended Friday night’s loss to the Giants with just one goal and eight disposals, not an outlier performance for the key-forward as those numbers mirror his current averages for the season.
Riewoldt’s averages of eight touches per game are the lowest since his debut season in the yellow and black back in 2007, with former St Kilda and North Melbourne star claiming he could be the reason the Tigers fail to make it back-to-back premierships this year, per Fox Sports’ Ben Waterworth.
“I think we’ve seen enough football this year for me to say that if Jack Riewoldt doesn’t get out of this form slump that he’s going through, they can’t win the flag,” Dal Santo told First Crack.
“He’s not playing good football, but they need him to play better football, in my opinion, for them to get to where we think they can get to.”
Paired with Riewoldt, Kangaroos key-forward Ben Brown has also failed to match the numbers we’ve come to expect and has come under scrutiny in the lass week for a poor 2020 campaign.
Fellow panelist and three-time premiership player Cameron Mooney added that there was a clear reason why the likes of Riewoldt and Brown were struggling this season.
“The game is so crowded in forward lines at the moment … that the athletic running forwards haven’t got the space to run or move into,” Mooney said.
“They’re finding it really hard to get their hands on the ball.
“Ben Brown’s finding it really hard to get on the lead – that’s how he wins his ball. Jack Riewoldt’s the same.
“The big hulking forwards, it’s almost a comeback for those boys. Charlie Dixon, Tommy Hawkins – the guys who can handle the big amounts of players around them, push away their player and take the mark – they’re the big forwards that we’re looking at at the moment.”