June 24, 2024

Lachie Cowan received ample support ahead of his debut game for the 2024 season. Even though he typically remains composed, Cowan confessed to feeling some pre-game jitters as he prepared for his first senior match of the year.

This wasn’t just any ordinary debut; Cowan was stepping in for an All-Australian player in the defensive half and facing off against one of the league’s most formidable offenses.

Despite the challenge, the second-year player from Tasmania held his own on Saturday, contributing 14 disposals in his eighth career game as his team secured an impressive 19-point victory against the previously undefeated Giants.

Just six days earlier, Cowan made a compelling case for his inclusion, seizing the opportunity after Adam Saad and Mitch McGovern suffered injuries. Following an outstanding performance for the Carlton Reserves, there was little doubt about who would be called upon to step up.

Michael Voss echoed this sentiment in his press conference the day before the GWS clash, acknowledging Cowan’s potential impact. “While it’s unfortunate to lose some key players, we have a young talent ready to step in and contribute significantly to the Carlton Football Club,” Voss remarked.

“Lachie has been in excellent form recently, and his presence was felt last year as well. He’s put in the hard work and will bring a strong presence to the team.”

While Cowan stepped in for Saad, it was Saad himself who played a crucial role in preparing Cowan for the game, providing valuable insights and support throughout the week.

On game day, Cowan had senior players alongside him to offer guidance and advice. “It was very important. Saady helped me with vision throughout the week, boosting my confidence heading into the game,” Cowan acknowledged. “I attribute my performance to the support and teamwork of my teammates, especially ‘Newy’, ‘Boydy’, and ‘Weiters’. Connecting with them on the field was seamless today, and credit goes to them.”

Throughout the week, Cowan engaged in discussions with assistant coach Aaron Hamill, VFL Senior Coach Luke Power, and development coach Tom Lonergan, ensuring he was well-prepared for the match.

Despite the preparations, Cowan still felt some nerves leading up to the game. However, he found comfort in the prospect of engaging in physical contests with his opponents.

“In my first game of the year, nerves were inevitable. But I knew that one big hit, mark, or tackle could help me settle in,” Cowan explained. “Fortunately, I managed to secure a nice mark early on, which helped alleviate some of those nerves.”

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