Patrick Walker, Connor Menadue and Eddie Ford were the North standouts in a 50-point practice match loss against Geelong on Saturday. 

VFL coach Leigh Adams said the game acted as a great gelling exercise, and believes the result is not indicative of what the North side was trying to achieve.

“The boys can learn a lot out of today … we wanted to use it to gel and put a few things in place,” Adams told North Media.

“The boys executed the stuff we’ve been training on for the last few weeks pretty well … hopefully with a bit more education over the next couple of weeks we’ll be able to round off those edges pretty quickly.

“We played the way we wanted to play, but obviously there are just a few things we need to tidy up.”

Menadue is an off-season arrival after playing 39 games for Richmond at AFL level, while Walker was selected with the second pick in the 2020 Rookie Draft. 

“Connor and Patrick showed good signs down back that they can both take the next step up if needed,” Adams said.

“Walker played on Luke Dahlhaus for a good period of time today; games like today will help him improve pretty quickly … he used the ball really well and defended well too.”

Ford continued his development and showed flashes of his game-breaking ability.

“Eddie just continues to get better and better,” Adams said.

“He’s learning more about playing the way we want to play, and he did some really good things around the footy today.”

With Will Walker and Taylor Garner on restricted minutes, Adams says their main goal was to get some match fitness into their legs.

“It was a big tick for them to get through the game unscathed … obviously they’ve had a few injury issues,” he said.

“A few soldiers playing a bit more game time will hopefully help us next week.”

The clash also marked the first appearances for five Tasmanian development players.

Tom Donnelly, Miller Hodge, Callum Kilpatrick, Harrison Gunther and Bailey Boag made the trip up from Tasmania, and impressed in their first hitouts at VFL level.

“The Tassie boys did an unbelievable job today, it was the first time they’d met any of the boys … it’s obviously a bit of a jump from TSL to VFL,” Adams said.

“All five played really good roles for us today. I’m happy with them and for them too.