Western Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge has made a passionate plea to the AFL to ease runner restrictions.
In the 2019 season, runners are only allowed onto the ground for 45 seconds in between goals, but there has been increasing pressure from AFL coaches to revert to the old rule.
Beveridge is leading the charge in this area, highlighting the importance of runners in the modern game.
“You need your runner,” Beveridge told SEN Breakfast.
“After a goal, there’s no use because you need spontaneity, you need to be able to use your runner when you need to use your runner, you need to get messages out to multiple players and sometimes just a specific player.
“Here we are, we’ve brought this significant rule in because a couple of people wanted it in headquarters.
“Every competition, whether it’s junior or senior in Australia will not follow suit.
“Even our state league, even at VFL level, even our Footscray players who play at that level, the runner can go out without restriction.
“Yet here we are, 18 teams can’t use their runner when they want to so the alarm bells are ringing for this push from headquarters.”
Beveridge also pushed the case for the physical and mental benefits of using runners.
“Physically, it helps you rotate and interchange, you’d like to think that you don’t have to use your runner a lot for that because you’ve got some good program there,” he added.
“Even the support, I spoke to one of the senior coaches, I won’t mention his name, the young bloke’s playing his second JLT game, stubbed his toe and got a direct turnover.
“He just wanted to get a runner out there to say ‘listen mate don’t worry about it, put it out of your mind, you’re going well.’”
The Bulldogs open their season against the Swans at Marvel Stadium on Sunday.
It’s Western Bulldogs membership day on 1116 SEN.
The Bulldogs are pleased to offer supporters a one-time membership offer for 2019.
Hear Garry and Tim’s full interview with Luke Beveridge in the player below