Western Bulldogs president Kylie Watson-Wheeler says no need for rash decisions despite poor performances

Western Bulldogs president Kylie Watson-Wheeler says no need for rash decisions despite poor performances
  • PublishedMay 6, 2024

It is too early in the season to panic and make rash decisions according to Western Bulldogs president Kylie Watson-Wheeler, as pressure mounts on the team’s performance and the tenure of its coach.

The Bulldogs sit 11th on the AFL ladder with three wins and five losses following a shock seven-point loss to the developing Hawthorn at Docklands Stadium on Sunday.

The club’s CEO Ameet Bain told ABC Sport ahead of the Bulldogs win over St Kilda in round five that he views the club as a finals side and that the criticism of coach Luke Beveridge was particularly unfair.

Beveridge is contracted until the end of 2025.

Following the defeat to the Hawks, Beveridge said he was prepared for the heat to intensify on his position.

“We know that unless you’re winning games of footy you’re always vulnerable to media scrutiny,” he told reporters.

“So we just expect it. I’ve got a thick skin, I can deal with it.”

Watson-Wheeler said while fans would be disappointed and frustrated with the results there is no cause for alarm.

“I think it’s too early in the season for us to panic or for us to make rash decisions,” Watson-Wheeler told ABC Radio Melbourne.

“But we’re always coming together as a club and we’re always discussing where we’re at. Does the playing group have what they need? Are the right decisions being made?”

“This is not something that you just jump in on when you have a bad loss … these conversations are happening constantly and we’re always assessing where we are at as a club.”

Beveridge’s relationship with his playing groups was questioned last week when Essendon ruckman Sam Draper claimed some players would seek to leave if Beveridge remained coach at the end of this season.

Watson-Wheeler said she sees a positive connection between Beveridge and the players.

“I think you need to watch what’s happening both on the field consistently and what’s happening within the walls of the club,” she said.

“I think that we are in a bit of a phase of evolution within the team in determining how we make sure we deliver that high performance that we have the ability to do.”

Watson-Wheeler said she was confident Beveridge would see out his contract.

“He’s contracted until the end of next year,” she said.

“We’re really focused on working together with the coaching group and we’ve had a lot of changes within our coaching group this year as well.”

The Bulldogs need to find out how to win close contests, according to Watson-Wheeler.

“We’ve had three convincing wins, we’ve had two convincing losses but then we’ve had three losses where we were right up at the line and just couldn’t find what we needed to jump over that and last night (against Hawthorn) was one of those games,” she explained.

The Bulldogs narrowly missed out on reaching the finals in 2023.

SOURCE: ABCNEWS

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