Richmond head coach Adem Yze.
Coach Adem Yze will instruct his Tigers to play an exciting brand in his first AFL season in charge. Image by Joel Carrett/AAP PHOTOS
  • Australian rules football

Impatient coach Adem Yze wants Tigers to excite fans

Shayne Hope November 29, 2023

Self-described as impatient, new Richmond coach Adem Yze is embracing fans’ expectations and says he’ll give his players a licence to thrill in pursuit of AFL success.

Yze, who served a long and successful coaching apprenticeship at Hawthorn and Melbourne, signed on as Damien Hardwick’s full-time replacement at the Tigers in September.

The former Demons forward took the reins at Punt Road this month and has had almost his entire squad together for the first time this week with the return of senior players for duty.

Dustin Martin is back in good shape for what looms as a massive season, with the Tigers superstar out of contract at the end of next year.

Dustin Martin.
 Richmond superstar Dustin Martin has returned for pre-season training at Punt Road. Image by Joel Carrett/AAP PHOTOS 

But while Martin is ready to hit the ground running, fitness staff are treading cautiously with key forward Tom Lynch (foot) and emerging defender Josh Gibcus (hamstring) after their injury-hit 2023 campaigns.

The trio are key cogs in Yze’s plan to reinvigorate Richmond following three years without a finals victory and the retirement of triple-premiership heroes Trent Cotchin and Jack Riewoldt.

The 46-year-old is acutely aware he has limited time to implement his new game style before the 2024 season but is eager to usher in a new wave of Tiger success in the near future.

“We hope that our fans are excited and we want them to expect a certain game style,” Yze told reporters on Wednesday.

“There’s going to be some ups and downs and bumps along the road, but what I do know is our boys train really hard and they’re driven to get back to where they can see some success (like) they’ve had in the past.

“Our job is to find the next (premiership) and we’re going to be impatient to try to get them there really quickly.”

Adem Yze.
 Tigers coach Adem Yze (C) has overseen the return to training of almost his full squad in Melbourne. Image by Joel Carrett/AAP PHOTOS 

Yze has already laid out plans for his team to play with “flair” in attack.

“We’ve got to give them the opportunity to go at the game. The best teams play with a lot of speed and with a lot of risk,” Yze said.

“There’s no reason why that when we win the footy back that we can’t play with a lot of dare and risk.

“But on the flip side you’ve obviously got to be really strong in the contest and defensively stable.”

Lynch managed just four games in 2023 and is still in some doubt for the start of next season, on a carefully managed program to ease him back to full fitness.

Gibcus, who missed all of 2023, has returned to Melbourne after spending time in Qatar at an world-renowned sports medicine practice in search of a solution to his hamstring woes.

He was on limited duties as the Tigers trained at Punt Road on Wednesday.

Richmond will embark on a process to select a 2024 leadership group in the coming weeks, with last season’s co-captains Dylan Grimes and Toby Nankervis in the mix to retain their positions.

The Tigers on Wednesday announced a $222,581.61 donation to long-time charity partner the Alannah and Madeleine Foundation.