Sport

Cameron plays down Steve Johnson concern

Steve Johnson and Brett Deledio walking laps during the GWS Giants' open training session.
Steve Johnson and Brett Deledio walking laps during the GWS Giants' open training session. Philip Hillyard

The intrigue surrounding Steve Johnson continues to grow with the triple premiership player keeping all his moves secret ahead of Saturday's preliminary final against Richmond at the MCG.

Johnson was in the stands at Spotless Stadium chatting with Leon Cameron and watched his team mates warm up and waited for the assembled media to leave before he took to the training track.

Johnson has played back to back games only three times since round nine this season.

"We expect Steve to train,” Cameron said.

"We're out here for 50 minutes, he normally trains for about 25 or 30 of that. If he gets through that unscathed we expect him to pull up well and play from there. If he struggles today then we are on the back foot a little bit.”

"He did everything right yesterday, he did his normal thing yesterday, he and Brett Deledio will train about the 30 min mark today. If they get through and pull up we expect they'll be right for Saturday.”

Cameron said the decision to play or rest him for the Saturday's preliminary final will be a joint one between he and Johnson.

"It's not just myself, it's myself and Steve being honest with each other,” Cameron said.

"If he hasn't recovered from one week to the next and I know it's a huge game on the weekend but you don't want a person running around too hindered to perform at his best. We know he goes in at 90 per cent most weeks but most of the Richmond squad because it's the end of a long year.”

Cameron said the issue is mostly related to his aging knees but also to the wear and tear of 17 years in the AFL.

Devon Smith looks the most likely to replace him should Johnson fail to recover well after training.

"He trained well, Cameron said.

"We've had him on this running program with his knee and his last two or three weeks have improved dramatically.”

Topics:  afl2017 afl finals brett deledio gws giants leon cameron richmond fc steve johnson



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