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Sam’s the man in the back six

Sam Rowe says he is enjoying his time down in defence. (Photo: Lachlan Cunningham/AFL Media)
Sam Rowe says he is enjoying his time down in defence. (Photo: Lachlan Cunningham/AFL Media)

Sam Rowe’s workmanlike displays are working wonders not only for the back six, but also for the starting 18. With his hardened presence in mixing it with the opposition’s tall forwards, suddenly Carlton is afforded the rare luxury of Lachie Henderson up front - and that’s a win for Marc Murphy and his merry men.

“I’m really enjoying playing down back and hopefully that continues,” Rowe said in the winner’s circle immediately following Monday night’s St Kilda match. “If I can hold down that spot then ‘Hendo’ has that ability to play forward . . . and who knows we might even switch around.”

For Rowe, the seed was sewn at the end of last year. “In the post-season review it was spoken about, and I was to play there pre-season to see how it went,” Rowe said. “And it’s been going pretty well so far.”

Rowe, the former Sydney rookie taken with Carlton’s second round selection (No.44 overall) in the 2011 NAB AFL Draft, stood the Saints’s Nick Riewoldt at Etihad, and was truly honest in the contest . . . and the bigger the contest the better as far as he is concerned. As he said: “I really enjoy taking the best forward because they’re the best ones to learn from.”

As is the case with all of his contemporaries, the 9th Round bye is truly timely for the big fella from Walla Walla. He’ll be heading back for his niece’s christening in nearby Wagga Wagga and freshen up for the next contest with Adelaide on “The G” where maybe, just maybe, an appointment with “The Pod” or their “Tex” Walker looms.