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Doedee leading from the back

Max Phillips  May 8, 2016 8:59 PM

Tom Doedee in action against North Adelaide

Tom Doedee in action against North Adelaide

All the boys we had in defence today contributed and they made it easy to lead from the back.

It’s easy to forget that Tom Doedee is just 19 years of age.

The well-spoken teenager gave away height, weight and years of experience battling against several North Adelaide opponents in Sunday’s SANFL clash. But the first-year Crow played more like a hardened veteran rather than a kid in just his fifth game of senior football.

Doedee directed traffic down back and was resolute throughout a frantic final term which saw the Roosters launch 15 inside 50m entries and continually pepper the scoreboard.

Eventually, Adelaide freed the ball from its defensive arc and made the most of a rare forward foray to steal victory with the final goal of the game.

Adelaide was without a host of key backmen for the clash with the Roosters, including Andy Otten, Sam Shaw, Jake Kelly and Alex Keath, and Doedee said the challenge was thrown to him to take on more responsibility in defence.

It was a test he passed with flying colours.

“The coaching staff wanted me to be a bit of a General back there today given that I was one of the more experienced guys back there,” Doedee said.

“A lot of credit has to go to our development boys. They were incredible down there and really impressed everyone with how they came in and played to our system and listened. The communication in the backline was awesome today.”

SANFL Stats: Round Seven vs North Adelaide

Doedee, who is playing in only his fourth year of football, said leadership was something that came naturally to him.

“I captained a lot of teams throughout my basketball career growing up,” he said.

“It’s something I gravitate towards. I love to take on that challenge and I look forward to doing more of it in the future.

“But again, all the boys we had in defence today contributed and they made it easy to lead from the back.”

Adelaide succumbed to South Adelaide by one point in Round Six in another SANFL thriller a fortnight ago.

Rainy and windy conditions made for a tight, low-scoring struggle against the Roosters on Sunday where the margin between the two sides never extended beyond 14 points after the half-time break.

Doedee said it was a boost for the playing group to be on the right side of this week’s cliffhanger finish.

“I think this is our best win of the season, especially after last week with that close loss (to South),” he said.

“We were all pretty stuffed in the final quarter, so we were just hoping to get one last goal. It’s what we were harping on all through the second half with attacking the contest, showing intensity and just battling on.

“After we got that last one to put us in front, we knew we had to lock down from there.

“It was a very sweet win.”