Suns vow to get physical against Saints
GOLD Coast are sick of looking like a side that can be bashed and have vowed to take a ruthless edge into Sunday's clash with St Kilda.
Suns fans would have been dismayed to learn of injury withdrawals to midfielders Gary Ablett and Aaron Hall following the loss of Michael Barlow last week to a broken leg.
Ablett (calf) and Hall (hamstring) both failed to get through Friday's training session.
However vice-captain Touk Miller, who returns after two weeks out with illness, says the Suns' confidence had not been rocked by the injuries.
"We talked about it in the team meeting and from the feeling among the group, you wouldn't even realise we had lost a big-name player," he said.
"The group hasn't been hit hard by it, we all know Gary isn't going to be around forever, we have to start to rely on the team we have.
"The team we have got in is really honest and I have no doubt we can get the job done."
Miller said while the side may have lost talent in superstar Ablett, who was scheduled to play his 300th game, the focus all week had been on ramping up their physicality at Etihad Stadium.
In last week's 10-point loss to Carlton, the Suns' pressure was below standard and they appeared to lose heart to win the contested footy.
Miller says the physical aspects of the game go hand-in-hand and when one dropped away for the Suns, the other always followed.
"We have to be ruthless in wanting to win the ball and attack the opposition, we need to have an edge to us," he said.
"We need to be able put the pressure on and jam them up and if we do that our offence will feed off our defence.
"And we have to win the contested ball. Sometimes when that drops away with us it looks like teams are bashing us and we want to change that."
The loss of Ablett and Hall has meant Miller will play almost exclusively in the midfield despite the original plan to station him up forward for the first couple of games back after his injury lay-off.
Miller missed the past two weeks after falling ill which led to an infection in the ankle where he had off-season surgery.
"I was sick and then my ankle flared up, we weren't 100 per cent why but it had something to do with where I had the surgery," he said.
"I just flushed it with antibiotics and it calmed down, it came good relatively quickly which is good.
"I started running a week ago and was able to come straight back in."