‘Spectacular’ Lynch is touch and go
Dylan Grimes says Tom Lynch's training form is "spectacular" as a decision nears on Damien Hardwick risking his star recruit against Carlton in Round 1.
Lynch yesterday sat out the club's training session at Punt Rd as part of his weekly routine before his participation in main training on Tuesday.
The club has repeatedly said it is confident he will play Round 1, with Lynch saying he is ready to go in either the AFL or a VFL practice match against Carlton at 4pm on Thursday at Punt Rd.
SUPERCOACH: GARY BUCKENARA'S TEAM REVEALED
TOM LYNCH: LET ME AT THEM
'HARD TO BEAT': DIMMA'S TIGERS PREDICTION
But there is still the option for Lynch, recovering from PCL surgery, to be eased through the VFL before a Friday night Round 2 debut against Collingwood.
Captain Trent Cotchin told the Herald Sun on Friday a heavy session of contested work last weekend had been a key development for Lynch's Round 1 hopes.
Grimes said yesterday he was blown away with what Lynch had given to the Tigers on and off the field over summer.
"I think he's very close," said Grimes.
"I have only seen what he's done on the track and it's been pretty spectacular," he said.
"Tom is an amazing athlete. You look at him and he's six foot seven (200cm) and 105kg and runs like the wind and to have someone on our team like that is a huge asset.
"I knew he was a captain at Gold Coast but Tom is a remarkable leader and a terrific person and that's been a real double bonus having him at the club. To be honest he's so close it will be touch and go whether he does play or not.
"I am sure he's someone Tigers fans can be excited by."
Grimes lauded Dustin Martin's courage in publicly voicing his battle with mental health issues over the weekend, with the Brownlow Medallist open about his issues to his teammates.
Remarkably, he said Martin was in better shape than he had seen him in his time at the club.
"He seems to be in the best space of his whole career. We got drafted together and in my opinion he's fitter than this time last year and stronger as well. I am pretty convinced he will have a terrific year,'' he said.
"Every player goes through the highs and lows of football and it's incredibly courageous of him to not only stand up in front of the media but also his teammates and voice the struggles he has had. I am sure he is a stronger person this year because of it."