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Don Pyke Post-Match: R1 Hear from Senior Coach Don Pyke following our Round 1 win against GWS.
He should be fine for next week

ADELAIDE'S high-powered attack doesn't need an additional boost, but it will get one with the return of captain Taylor Walker for Saturday's clash with Hawthorn at the MCG.

Walker was a spectator as the Crows fired home 22 goals with 11 separate goal-kickers in their 56-point victory against premiership favourites Greater Western Sydney at Adelaide Oval on Sunday.

Walker was a late scratching with a hamstring injury sustained in the side's final JLT Community Series game against the Brisbane Lions two weeks ago.

Crows coach Don Pyke said it wasn't worth the risk playing Walker after he pulled up a bit sore after training last Thursday.

"He was really close," Pyke said.

"He had some awareness, and some awareness rings a little bit of an alarm bell.

"The hardest part you've got with a hamstring injury is you can't actually test it at genuine game speed where you're asked repeat effort, fatigue, change direction, kick left and right foot.

"He should be fine for next week."

The Crows were the highest-scoring team in the competition last year with their direct ball movement and willingness to take risks.

Rory Laird was influential across half-back where he picked up a game-high 40 possessions.

Laird spent time during the JLT Community Series through the midfield, but his ability to create attack out of defence is too good to ignore.

"It's probably the same argument that's been around with Brodie Smith for a number of years," Pyke said.

"He's got a handy knack of finding the ball and he was outstanding today, clearly I thought the best player.

"We want the flexibility of playing him there and in the midfield."

Crows vice-captain Rory Sloane had 24 possessions in his first game of the year after recovering from a fractured eye socket.

The Crows played him in shorter stints in the 33-degree heat as he builds his match fitness.

"We wanted to keep his quality around the ball for as long as we could, but we wanted to make sure he got enough spells," Pyke said.

"We factored in one or two extra spells for him per half just to allow him to be fresh and not push him beyond the limit given his pre-season."

It would be hard to change a winning team, but defender Jake Lever pushed his claims for a recall with a strong game in a SANFL trial on Saturday.

Lever is coming back from a hamstring injury, while veteran midfielder Scott Thompson will also be considered after his first game back from a shoulder complaint.

"It was great they got a game under their belts, they got 80-odd minutes each in their first hit-out for the year," Pyke said.

"Both played reasonably. I watched the game yesterday and there were some good signs there.

"They will both be in the mix.”

"But fairness to the guys who played today, I'd suggest they've done a bit in earning a spot for next week."

Forward Mitch McGovern picked up an ankle injury and will be assessed during the week.