Fremantle Dookers coach Justin Longmuir urges the linebacker to move the delivery game forward after scoring goals for the Chickens

Fremantle coach Justin Longmire admits there is “definitely room for improvement” with Nat Fyfe’s opening run forward performance, but a delivery inside 50 hasn’t helped his case.

After a solid start in attack, including three goals in practice games against Port Adelaide and Port Adelaide, the double Brownlow medalist was limited to just one behind from nine touches in Sunday’s loss to St Kilda at Marvel Stadium.

Longmuir felt that the midfield could have made life a little easier for Fyfe and fellow key forwards Matt Taberner and Josh Treacy (one goal each) and Luke Jackson (none) with better display.

The Dockers only managed seven goals for the game, and two after halftime, despite leading the Inside-50s 65-53.

“There is definitely room for improvement,” Longmuir told 7NEWS Perth of the Fyfe match.

“I don’t think he’s reached the heights he did during the pre-season so there’s a bit of work to be done but we can make life easier for him too with some deliveries.

“Put him in the same boat as some of the other key forwards and we need to try and help them out as much as we can.

“The deeper strikers probably haven’t had the connection that they would have loved or would have preferred and there are a lot of things we can do to help them get into the game and impact the scoreboard a little bit more.”

Longmuir highlighted the mid-forward connection as the biggest area for improvement ahead of the Dockers’ first home game of the season against North Melbourne at Optus Stadium on Saturday.

Nat Fyfe struggled forward against St Kilda.
camera iconNat Fyfe struggled forward against St Kilda. credit: Michael Wilson/AFL Pictures

“It did go wrong on a few points, but I think most of all and the biggest thing that came out of the review was connecting halfway through and making the most of our entries,” he said.

“I think after half-time we had 40 runs for two goals and that wouldn’t work so we need to sort that out.”

Fremantle is considering whether to give veteran forward Michael Walters another NFL game after he surpassed the minutes managed for his Bill Thunder in a zero-game game against Subiaco in Mandurah on Saturday.

Walters played around 50 minutes on his return from an Achilles tendon injury, while winger Nathan O’Driscoll (with a foot) had an entire game.

“We’ll have a discussion tomorrow (Wednesday) about Sonny (Walters),” Longmire said.

Michael Walters is ready to return.
camera iconMichael Walters is ready to return. credit: Michael Wilson/AFL Pictures

“He’s made a good comeback in the WAFL but he’s played limited minutes so we’ll discuss tomorrow about his build, whether it’s in the NFL this week or he needs more minutes (in the WAFL).”

Longmuir said Dockers will “have to” work in second player Harry Sheezel after making his stunning debut for the Kangaroos against West Coast on Saturday.

Chisel collected a match-high 34 possessions from halfback to win the first round of the Rising Star nomination.

“Based on his performance over the weekend, we have to,” said Longmuir.

“We don’t look at age, we look at performance… so we have to put some effort into it.”

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