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West Coast Eagles

Yeo buoyed by pre-season performance

Yeo press conference 04.03.19 Midfielder Elliot Yeo speaks to the media before an open training session on Monday.

Reigning John Worsfold medallist Elliot Yeo says he still has round one firmly in his sights after getting through Friday’s JLT Community Series clash with Geelong unscathed.

Speculation was rife that Yeo might be in doubt for West Coast’s season-opening bout with Brisbane after he underwent off-season surgery to remedy a lingering toe ailment, but the 2017 all-Australian allayed those concerns by playing approximately 90 minutes of solid football against the Cats on Friday.

The 25-year-old said he expected to play more game time against Fremantle on Sunday after amassing 23 disposals, six marks and six tackles in the pre-season fixture against Chris Scott’s men.

“I ticked a lot off with the strength and conditioning side of things,” Yeo said at today’s press conference.

“It was one of those ones where I was really happy with how my stats looked.

“It was a bit of a confidence booster going forward as well. I will get more minutes this week against Fremantle and will just keep ticking boxes for round one.”

As happy as he was to get through the contest without incident, Yeo was more pleased with how the team performed against a strong Geelong outfit.

He admitted the team was unsure how they might perform after having a shorter-than-usual pre-season following last year’s premiership triumph.

However, Yeo said the Eagles were not getting ahead of themselves after beating the Cats by 34 points.

“I guess having a delayed start to the pre-season we were sort of going in maybe thinking we were a little underdone, but I guess from the results and the feeling of how everything panned out on Friday we’re on track,” he explained.

“There’s a couple of aspects we need to work on and tighten the screws up with certain things in terms of team defence and attacking as well. It’s just small things that we need to tweak before round one.”

Yeo was also thrilled with how some of the club’s emerging Eagles performed in the pre-season hit-out.

He was particularly impressed with the efforts of forwards Oscar Allen (13 disposals, three goals), Jack Petruccelle (nine disposals, one goal) and Jarrod Brander (12 disposals, two marks).

“I thought Oscar Allen and (Jack Petruccelle) played really well,” Yeo said.

“Oscar took some really good grabs and made a presence up forward as well. I thought that he was one of the ones that stood out. Even Jarrod Brander as well played a really good game of football.

“We’ve got some exciting young players coming through and it’s going to be tight for spots. But I guess that competition that you have certainly helps build the group. If they play football like that I’m sure they’ll be playing (AFL) soon.”