At a glance:
- Brett Ratten has brushed aside criticism surrounding midfielders Seb Ross and Bradley Hill.
- Ratten says people are too quick to look at numbers on the stats sheet and haven't recognised the roles the pair have been playing in 2020.
- Ross and Hill will both face Port Adelaide on Saturday night at Adelaide Oval.
Brett Ratten has dismissed external criticism surrounding Seb Ross and Bradley Hill’s output following the season restart.
The pair have veered away from their regular, high disposals numbers so far, but Ratten says the team-oriented roles the pair are fulfilling have impacted games well beyond the numbers everyone sees.
“It’s interesting, everybody looks at the stats to see how everybody’s going,” Ratten said.
“Seb’s done some really important roles for us this year, and people haven’t actually acknowledged that.
“You can sit there and say ‘he only had this, or he only did this’, but internally we know he’s done some really good jobs and played some certain roles that people haven’t noticed.”
The dual-Trevor Barker Award winner has played every game this season and has lined up 94 of the Saints’ past 95 games.
“People can say he should be having 30 or 25 possessions, but if he gets 12 or 13 and does what he has to do for the team we’re really happy with that,” Ratten said.
“He had a downer against Fremantle, that was a performance that he did have a down game, but I think some of the criticisms are a little bit harsh.”
High-profile signee Hill has also come under fire in recent weeks, but Ratten is adamant the triple-Premiership Hawk is on the cusp of a big performance.
“Hilly I feel is just about to break a game open, he’s not far off it,” Ratten said.
“His running and his running numbers were very high last week and he was probably a bit stiff not to get the ball a few times when he was in really good positions.
“I think he’s going to get around the corner on that and really have a breakout game.”
Ross and Hill will line up for St Kilda in Saturday night’s under lights clash with the top-of-the-table Port Adelaide.