Collingwood ruckman Brodie Grundy says teammate Travis Cloke deserves to hold his spot in the Magpies’ side for Saturday night’s AFL clash with Carlton.
Cloke was praised by coach Nathan Buckley after he “played his role” with two goals in difficult conditions in last Friday’s win over Fremantle.
But the struggling spearhead is still in danger of being dropped for the third time this season with fellow tall Darcy Moore likely to return from a broken collarbone.
“I love playing with Trav. I think he’s got a real energy and a real presence,” Grundy said on Tuesday.
“Does he deserve to stay in? I think so … he’s been playing some really good footy.
“Even when he was playing VFL, he was really tipping in.
“He loves his teammates and he’s said that he wants to stay at this football club … I’d love to be a teammate of his for years to come.”
The Pies were criticised for going too tall in their Queen’s Birthday loss to Melbourne, but Grundy said Cloke didn’t necessarily need to go back to the VFL to make way for Moore.
“The tall dynamic has worked well in the past,” he said.
“So there’s potential that that could happen.”
Collingwood will be out to avoid a clean sweep at the hands of their arch-rivals this season, with the Blues winning their round-seven encounter by 15 points.
Grundy, after playing arguably his best game of the campaign against the Dockers, also has plenty of personal motivation.
“Probably my poorest performance would have come against Carlton last time we played,” he said.
“That’s something that I’ll definitely be looking to turn around this week.”