Richmond might be AFL grand final underdogs but they plan to embrace a huge week of hype and won’t be afraid to dream big.
The Tigers are riding high after a stunning preliminary final win in front of nearly 95,000 – mostly Richmond – fans at the MCG, as they begin their preparations to face minor premiers Adelaide.
Star forward Jack Riewoldt knows how crazy the atmosphere can be around Punt Road Oval during the season and expects nothing less than fever pitch from the Tiger Army ahead of their first grand final since 1982.
“Just embracing it and not being afraid to talk about what could be,” Riewoldt replied when asked how they plan to handle the storm that’s about to hit Tigerland.
“The week is always going to be different, but we’re really excited and enthusiastic about it.
“Certainly we’re going into the game under no allusions … they’ve been the form side of the competition and we’re going to have to play right up to our best if we want to challenge them.
“They’re a great side, they played in two great finals in this series already and have done a number on the sides they’ve played against.
“We know that we’re going to have to play our best to take it up to them.”
Riewoldt admits he didn’t play well in Saturday’s preliminary final win over Greater Western Sydney.
But it’s not all about him any more.
There was a time when the Tigers would have lost more games than they won if the club’s eight-time leading goal kicker had a quiet day like he did against the Giants.
The 28-year-old kicked his only goal of the preliminary final 18 minutes into the final term and finished with eight possessions and two marks.
“Let’s not beat around the bush – I didn’t play very well,” he said.
“But my role is completely different to what it has been in the past.
“Although I probably didn’t have the kicks, marks and handballs I like to think that I led from the front.
“I just tried to keep those younger guys in the game and provide them with (opportunities for) their strengths, which is getting the ball to ground.
“I didn’t have the greatest game but whatever the role the side wants me to play, I just try and play to my best ability.”