MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 21: Toby Nankervis (left) and Nick Vlastuin of the Tigers walk towards the national anthem during the 2018 AFL First Preliminary Final match between the Richmond Tigers and the Collingwood Magpies at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on September 21, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Premiership Tiger Nick Vlastuin has revealed just how Richmond coach Damien Hardwick helped the players and the club as a whole move on from the preliminary final upset as they prepare for the 2019 season.

After Collingwood beat Richmond by 39 points that ended the then reigning premiers year, Hardwick told the players, “shit happens”.

“Dimma just sat down and said pretty much ‘shit happens’, put it in perspective,” Vlastuin told the Herald Sun.

“He looked at the whole year, pretty successful year — we only lost six games and Collingwood just played too good that day.

“He tried to get us to move on pretty quick because you don’t really get better dwelling on such a bad game for us.”

Vlaustin was glad that the premiership cup headed to Perth since the players and the club did not really hear about it as much.

Off season recruit Tom Lynch has been dealing with his rehabilitation from a PCL injury and is keen to train with the players this pre season.

“He’s going really well, he’s in rehab still, so not with the main group,” Vlastuin said.

“Pretty much two weeks before even our young boys were back, he was in there every day.

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“He’s had a pretty extended break so he was keen to get back into it.

“As far as I can tell, he’s fitting in really well.”

Vlaustin is pleased with the Tiger youngsters as they have been impressive but he still thinks that they will have to bide their time due to the more seasoned guns.

“Going from preseason Liam Baker’s been training really well in that small half forward role, but that’s a pretty hard position to bust into,” he said.

“We’ve got a couple of key backs who are pretty good — the boys really like Ryan Garthwaite, so hopefully he can play a few games, but then he’s competing against Dave Astbury and Alex Rance, so once again, pretty tough.”

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