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Cloke not done, just needs thirst: Buckley

Bucks on dropped star Cloke3:14

AFL:Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley discusses why he dropped star forward Travis Cloke.

Lauren WoodHerald Sun

COLLINGWOOD power forward Travis Cloke needs to rediscover his “thirst” for the contest before he is any chance of returning, according to Magpies coach Nathan Buckley.

But he is anything but done, Buckley believes.

Cloke was dropped from the team for yesterday’s Anzac Day clash with Essendon, forced to play VFL on Sunday where he finished with two goals and five possessions in an 85-point loss to the Bombers.

Buckley said he has had discussions with Cloke about what he needs to do to earn his way back, and that he will be given as much VFL time as he needs to get things right.

“He’s out of form at the moment,” Buckley conceded on Fox Footy.

“The discussions I’ve had with him were about getting back to enjoying his footy and finding that ‘first to the contest’ (mentality) that’s missing at the moment.

“We’ll give him as much opportunity as we need to at VFL level to get that back to prove he’s worth coming back in.

“I think Trav can still be a really damaging player in this competition. I think he’s going to be very important for us as our year progresses.”

Buckley insisted that Cloke’s battle is a short-term one after what he said has been a long period of bearing responsibility for the Magpies’ forwardline.

“He needs to find that thirst for the contest again and the second, third and fourth efforts that are so prevalent in him when he plays his best footy,” he said.

“Through 2011, ‘12 and ‘13, there was no more damaging key forward - with respect to guys like Tom Hawkins etc - but he was a dominant force in front of the ball. He struggled to rediscover that form through ‘14, with a bit of injury through ‘15 and he’s really struggled through the early part of this year.

“The game shifts and changes and it’s hard to keep up with sometimes. If you think you’ve got the game licked - you’re a star of the game and one of the top echelon of player - it might last for 18 months or two years and then evolution kicks in and you’ve got to redevelop and redefine yourself and find different ways.”

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Quang

Quang

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