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Clarko unperturbed by JLT loss

JLT2: Hawks inspired by Eagle success Despite losing star midfielder Tom Mitchell, Alastair Clarkson will draw confidence from the West Coast Eagles who won last year's premiership without numerous star players

Hawks Coach Alastair Clarkson has dismissed concerns surrounding the Hawks’ JLT2 performance, after his side bungled a 40-point half time lead to fall to the Tigers by eight points at the final siren.

“The focus for all clubs this time of year is to see whether [there’s evidence of] some of the patterns you’ve been working on over the summer,” Clarkson explained in his post-match press conference. 

“In the first half we saw that to be the case and we played some really good footy.

“Even in last week’s game against Brisbane, with a young and more inexperienced side, we saw some of those [patterns] as well, so that’s been really pleasing.

“We still need to work on them over the course of the year, but by and large we’ve been pleased with what we’ve seen.”

Read: The things we learned from JLT2

Hawks fans were given a taste of life without injured star Tom Mitchell. Jaeger O’Meara (35 disposals) and Liam Shiels (26) led the charge in the midfield, with the duo well assisted by up and coming youngsters James Cousins and James Worpel. 

According to Clarkson, all the Hawks’ midfielders have a role to play in filling the void left by the reigning Brownlow Medallist. 

“Jaeger’s obviously a seasoned player who has been around for a long period of time, albeit not playing a lot of footy in the last 3-4 years,” Clarkson said.

“We naturally expect that he’s going to be able to fill some of [Mitchell’s] void, but we need a whole series of players to fill that gap.”

In his first appearance since handing over the captaincy reigns, Jarryd Roughead was sharp in front of goal, finishing with a bag of five.

Read: Youngster's eyes set on AFL debut

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs