Richmond coach Damien Hardwick is confident the Tigers can “right the ship” after suffering one of their worst AFL losses in history.
Richmond were belted by 88 points by Greater Western Sydney in Canberra on Saturday – their first defeat to the expansion club.
They scored just 23 points to the Giants’ 111 – their lowest in 55 years.
Only five times before have they posted fewer points in a game, and those games were between 1908 and 1961.
Their eight scoring shots (three goals, five behinds) was their worst since 1987.
Jack Riewoldt and Sam Lloyd were their only goal-kickers, with Riewoldt booting two, including the first, which didn’t arrive until about 37 minutes into the game.
“We were disappointed,” Hardwick said.
“To give up eight goals in the first quarter, you’re always on the back foot. We just couldn’t get any ascendency through the middle.
“They beat us in contested ball, clearance, through that area of the ground and nullified us in tackles.”
Hardwick labelled as shameful the Tigers’ defensive effort last week in their 70-point loss to Hawthorn.
But he thought it was better on Saturday, having limited them to 26 scoring shots off 64 inside 50s.
“They were up 50 points at quarter time, you’ve got to remember that, and they only scored 60 for the rest of the game,” he said.
“I was disappointed with the last quarter to give up four goals to none, though.”
Asked where the loss left the Tigers, who sit 13th on the ladder with four rounds to go, Hardwick said it was a matter of just working through the tough times.
“We’ve openly talked about it being more about next year now and how we go about it,” he said.
“They’re a strong group, they’re a resilient group. We’ve been in this situation before, a long time ago, but we’re capable of righting the ship and getting to where we need to go.”
They next host Collingwood at the MCG on Friday.