KARMICHAEL Hunt does not have much luck.
But if he wants to continue his AFL career next year, he needs some this week.
His position will come under debate and it will be justified — he didn’t do enough to cement his position against the Swans yesterday.
Suns coach Guy McKenna’s instinct will be that Hunt may be exposed for lack of run on the over-sized Subiaco Oval and he will think long and hard about bringing a runner in for the match against West Coast.
But Hunt needs a few weeks in the side. He needs the type of loyalty at the selection table that has become a McKenna trademark.
Hunt’s best moments were acts of physicality.
He crunched Ben McGlynn in the centre of the ground early in the third quarter and won the ball that had been jarred loose.
And there is no doubt players get a bit fumbly when he is in the vicinity — even Sydney’s contested possession monster Josh Kennedy dropped a simple mark he would usually swallow when Hunt was breathing down his neck.
To make it worth going on next year Hunt needs to start hurting sides when he has the footy, not just when they do.
But taking him out of the side one week after bringing him in does him no good, nor Aaron Hall, the man who was dropped which created the vacancy for Hunt.
The philosophy of dropping a player is not that the kick in the bum instantly makes them better, there is an expectation they iron out their deficiencies — you can’t do that in one game in the twos.
The rest of the Suns’ side certainly got the message, their pressure was good.
Sydney outplayed them but their half backs did not run riot — Nick Malceski and Rhys Shaw were good players, but they did not kill the Suns like they did the Cats last week.
And they didn’t roam free like Adelaide’s Brodie Smith and Matthew Jaensch did against the Suns. They really only started to rack-up the touches in the final quarter.
The problem for Hunt is he was stationed forward then and had faded out of the game. .
He doesn’t have great luck, Karmichael.
McKenna had declared he would come into the side for the Rd 5 game against Melbourne but was knocked-out in the twos.
The Suns went on to win five in a row while Hunt, who had a bad concussion and also picked-up a staph infection from the gash on his forehead, missed a few weeks in the NEAFL and once again had to rebuild his fitness.
So, what should have been an entry against the lowly Demons became an initiation of fire against the premiership favourites.
Bringing him in for his first game against the Swans was a bit like picking a batsman for his test debut against the Windies in the eighties.