Mitch McGovern/Getty Images

Team Talk: Grand Final

Trent Cotchin’s bump on Dylan Shiel was the big decision on everyone’s lips but after the Tigers skipper was cleared of any wrongdoing on Monday morning, it seemed clear that Damien Hardwick would run out the same 22 for the third successive time in September.

While that still remains likely, Hardwick admitted the Tigers had ‘a couple of sore boys’ who would be monitored as the week progresses. Hardwick failed to mention any names however key defender David Astbury along with Kane Lambert are believed to be two players in that category.

Despite playing out the game, both were seen going into the change rooms at quarter-time of Saturday’s preliminary final against GWS.

After being named the AFL Coaches’ Association Coach of the Year on Tuesday night, Hardwick spoke on the state of his side heading into this Saturday’s drought-breaking game.

“Obviously prelim finals are pretty tough encounters, so we’ve got a couple of sore boys that we’ll just need to nurse through this week and see how they pull up,” Hardwick said.

“I probably think that the 22 that played last week have earned the right at this stage, but we’ll just have to wait and see.”

Sam Lloyd and Anthony Miles remain two of the frontrunners to be recalled into the side should that be necessary.

For the Crows, Mitch McGovern’s fitness will be put to the test in Wednesday’s main session.

Adelaide’s vice-captain Rory Sloane said McGovern has been doing all that he can in a bid to be fit for Saturday’s Grand Final.

“He will have to do absolutely everything at training and just be confident it’s going to be absolutely cherry ripe to play,” Sloane told reporters on Tuesday.

“He’s been running at the start of this week and that’s all we can ask of him for the moment.

“There’s not much more extra treatment we can do, just let it rest.

“He’s got nothing to lose.

“He either gets up and plays or he doesn’t, so we’ll give him every chance, and I’m positive we’ll see him train tomorrow.”

McGovern’s chances appear less than 50/50 at this stage however if he were to prove his fitness to the selectors, Andy Otten would likely be the unlucky player to make way in the side.

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