Main content

Why Lachie's loving life

The Journey | S2E1 Season 2 | Episode 1. In the first episode of Season 2 of The Journey, go behind-the-scenes of Carlton's pre-season preparations for the 2017 season. Presented by Virgin Australia.

Lachie Plowman rated Sunday’s meritorious 15-point win on the MCG in the wet on a par with the dramatic two-point victory over Port Adelaide in ‘Simmo’s 250th game at Etihad Stadium last May.

That it happened against Essendon probably tips it over the edge - but player and club have already moved on, and Gold Coast becomes the priority.

That said, Plowman believed last Sunday’s win was inevitable on the back of the close calls with Richmond and Melbourne.

“After the Richmond game, there were a few areas that we as a playing group and the coaching staff weren’t happy about,” Plowman said at Ikon Park during the week.

“To come out against Melbourne the week before showed some really good signs, and to then put in a four-quarter effort against Essendon was really good.

“There were periods where we kept the ball locked in our forward half and couldn’t score, then Essendon might have kicked a ‘cheapy’, but we knew that if we kept doing what we’d been doing and kept the ball in our half it would give us the best chance to lead, to protect the lead and to win at the end.”

The rebounding Plowman, a most capable contributor to the Carlton cause whether in the air or on the deck, is part of that tight-knit defensive team within the team under the watch of backline coach Dale Amos.

Aligning with Sam Rowe, Sam Docherty, Kade Simpson, Caleb Marchbank, Simon White and (now) Tom Williamson, Plowman - first taken by GWS at selection 3 in the 2012 national draft - forms part of that ever-improving core of Blues doing it the Bolton way – and has unquestionably vindicated the faith of the Carlton list manager who drove the deal to get him here.

Lachie Plowman has already shown big improvement in 2017. (Photo: AFL Media)

Perhaps speaking for the entire playing group, Plowman reflected on 2016 as a learning year where the game plan was put in place and the players found their way accordingly. This year the plan has been refined and as the man himself declared “everyone’s across it a lot more”.

As he said: “The confidence that you take through playing with each other for long periods of time, where you get to know how each plays, has been really good”.

At 22, and just 40 games into his League tenure, Plowman’s incredible improvement over a relatively brief period can be put down to an uninterrupted summer preparation.

“This is probably the first pre-season I’ve ever really done and I’ve remained injury-free. Getting the work done early has certainly helped my body,” Plowman said.

“About three years ago I copped a little injury to the AC joint which put me out for a few weeks. I then dislocated my elbow during a training session and last year had hip surgery, but this year, touchwood, has been really good.”

It’s of little wonder then that Plowman is banging the door down to get to Ikon Park thesedays. A win will do that of course, but this is a happy place in any event.

“A winning culture definitely helps make the club a more exciting place to be around, and it (the environment) is very good,” Plowman said. “The coaching staff have been really good for the young guys and the leaders as well, and they’ve been great teachers. It’s a wonderful learning environment and we always get challenged.

“The coaches bring good energy to the group in the training sessions and to the games. Everybody’s up and about, and within the playing group itself there are different personalities, which is good.”

So where does Plowman rate in the personality stakes? “I’m a bit more of an introvert, I tend to take a back seat, look around and have a laugh. But I do put my two bob’s worth in every now and again,” came the reply.

Thesedays Plowman lives in Airport West where he shares digs with his cousin - which means he’s impeccably placed to get back to his old home town as well as his home away from home. As he said: “She’s from Sunbury, I’m from Macedon and it’s only half an hour to home and 20 minutes to the club . . . and I get home a little bit to see Mum, Dad, family and friends”.

Plowman has a lot of football ahead of him, but already he’s been lauded for his reading of the play and his canny knack of finding position, particularly behind the ball.

Is there a player Plowman’s modelled himself on? Well there’s a couple.

“At GWS it was definitely Heath Shaw – a really good teacher who’s been around the game a long time,” Plowman said.

“Here it’s Sam Docherty and Kade Simpson who have been very good for me, as well as our backline coach Dale Amos. The backline group’s been pretty solid for the past year or so now, we’ve got a good understanding of each other and we’re all happy to be around each other and playing good footy.

Lachie Plowman and Sam Docherty share a close bond. (Photo: AFL Media)

“That’s why we’re looking forward to the next game and what the season holds for us.”

With Simpson again preparing for a significant personal milestone (he this week draws level with Geoff Southby (268 games) in seventh place for most senior appearances in Carlton history) hopefully history repeats at Etihad for Plowman and co.