Richmond’s Mabior Chol says he didn’t see Jack Riewoldt coming in the lead-up to the Tigers star’s stunning hanger late in Sunday’s win over Adelaide.
Chol had been leading to a kick inside 50 from Jack Graham but was upstaged by Riewoldt, who soared to take a spectacular pack mark after running back with the flight of the ball. Riewoldt converted the ensuing set shot en route to a five-goal haul in the 28-point victory over the Crows at Giants Stadium.
Mabior Chol, centre, celebrates his goal with teammates. Credit:Getty Images
“It was a funny one. I did not see Jack coming at all,” Chol said on Monday of the incredible moment.
“Credit to him, it was an amazing mark. I think if you see the footage, I was pretty shocked, where he came from. I was like, ‘Wow, where did he come from?’”
Riewoldt risked injury by tracking back with the flight of the ball, an issue brought to the fore last week by AFLW star Darcy Vescio when she questioned whether a similarly courageous mark from Western Bulldogs gun Lachie Hunter should have been celebrated.
“Having no regard for your own safety shouldn’t be what makes you a good teammate,” Vescio tweeted.
Chol said that ultimately players acted on instinct when it came to such moments.
“I think it’s just an instinct thing. It’s a hard one to call because you’re just playing off instinct out there. It happens so quick you don’t even notice,” Chol said.
In his sixth season on Richmond’s list, Chol, 24, returned to the senior side on Sunday to play just his 22nd AFL game and first since being dropped after last year’s qualifying final loss to Brisbane at the Gabba.
Having missed out on all three of Richmond’s AFL flags during his time at Punt Road, the ruckman/forward said he had been particularly driven by last year’s near-miss.
“The first premiership we won I was a bit young and it didn’t really hit me. But I reckon last year was probably the one that hurt a fair bit from my point of view,” Chol said.
“Last year was probably more painful than any other year, and that’s something that’s driven me.”
But speaking from the Tigers’ new Bondi base, Chol said he’d been pleased with his comeback performance, one which yielded two goals.
“I was pretty happy. I thought my contest work was pretty good,” he said.
“The message has been real clear from the coaches. Had a big focus on me to get my contest work up, I needed a big spike on that.
“Just keep improving every week.”
Off-contract at season’s end, and given the Tigers’ glut of quality talls, Queenslander Chol has been linked with an end-of-season trade to Gold Coast. But he said he was keeping his eyes squarely on the short-term.
“I haven’t really thought about the contract talk. I think at the moment I’m really focused on what I can control. The contract stuff will take care of itself,” he said.
Chol, of South Sudanese descent, is close with several of the Tigers’ Indigenous players including Shai Bolton, Daniel Rioli, Marlion Pickett and Derek Eggmolesse-Smith and was looking forward to playing in Saturday night’s Dreamtime game in Perth.
“I know how much it means to them, and I’m just excited to be alongside them. It’ll be amazing to run around them and show them all our love and support,” he said.
Most Viewed in Sport
From our partners
Source: Read Full Article