An AFL scoring boom will play right into the hands of the zippy Brisbane Lions, according to returning vice-captain Dayne Zorko.
Zorko makes his first appearance for the season in Saturday’s clash against North Melbourne at the Gabba and after watching round one from the sidelines due to suspension, he believes high-scoring shootouts are now in vogue.
Nine teams last weekend broke the 100-point barrier – including the Lions, who despite losing by 64 points to West Coast, took it as a huge positive that they were able to score so heavily away from home against last year’s grand finalists.
A number of rule changes – including reduced interchange rotations, a tighter interpretation of the deliberate out-of-bounds rule and the new 10m `exclusion zone’ around the mark – have made it easier to attack, and star midfielder Zorko says it’s good news for the Lions.
“We’ve got a very young, energetic, fast team so I think that can definitely suit us, no doubt,” Zorko said on Friday.
“The way the game’s heading with the rotations and that, it’s definitely a lot easier to score.”
Zorko said the added pace of Josh Green, who comes into the Brisbane side along with Zorko and veteran defender Daniel Merrett, combined with pacy small forward Lewis Taylor and a “flying” Allen Christensen should have the Kangaroos worried.
Brisbane were soundly beaten by North Melbourne twice last year – first by 82 points in round two at Etihad Stadium, then again at the Gabba by 72 points late in the season.
“They really smashed us both times. We’ve looked at those tapes and hopefully tomorrow afternoon we won’t have the same result,” Zorko said.
“We don’t want to be the side that gets belted by 60 to 100 points (anymore).”
Zorko also said he had learned a hard lesson from his ill-disciplined high shot on GWS’s Phil Davis in Brisbane’s final pre-season match that earned him suspension.
“I was extremely disappointed with my actions a few weeks ago but I’ve put that behind me now,” he said.