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Clearance count kills Hawks again in heavy loss

At least the Wizard finally kicked straight.

Teenager Nick Watson's first AFL goal was a rare highlight for Hawthorn, who suffered a 55-point smacking from Melbourne on Saturday at the MCG.

The Hawks went into the clash with a clear plan that quickly unravelled, with five goals to none in the opening term.

After losing centre clearances by nine last week against Essendon, they suffered the same fate against the potent Melbourne midfield.

Next they come up against in-form Geelong in their annual Easter Monday clash.

"To be minus-18 after two rounds is disastrous. Last year we were really strong in that area," said Hawthorn coach Sam Mitchell.

"That's going to be a heavy focus for us (ahead of the Cats).

'"Having to attack from the back half all day is just too difficult against a side as good as Melbourne. We couldn't halve the contest."

The Hawks took a whopping 52 uncontested marks in the first term as they tried in vain to keep the ball off Melbourne.

To their credit, they regrouped quickly and outscored Melbourne in the second term.

But inevitably the dam wall burst late and Melbourne swamped them again.

Sam Mitchell
Hawthorn coach Sam Mitchell has bemoaned the centre clearances in the Hawks' opening two losses. (Joel Carrett/AAP PHOTOS)

"We go into halftime optimistic and thinking we'll be able to create some chances," Mitchell said.

"As soon as we dropped off, they were able to put us away far too comfortably."

Watson, their highly touted small forward, finally kicked straight in the third term after three behinds in round one and another three misses earlier in Saturday's game.

The 19-year-old excitement machine, nicknamed Wizard, turned to the crowd in celebration.

"I said to the boys after the game, 'Did anyone else have seven shots in their first two games?'," Mitchell said.

"One of the boys said it took him until his fifth game to have his first shot.

"He (Watson) plays a little bit older than he is. I was pleased he was finally able to kick one - it's obviously playing on your mind as a 19-year-old.

"The Wiz, you watch him and you see a lot of good things."

But otherwise, Mitchell saw a lot of bad things on Saturday.

"Coming into this season, we wanted to put ourselves in winnable positions in far more games," he said of his emerging side.

"This is one - a (55-point) loss, we don't want this. As a football club, we want to move past these big losses where we're not able to compete with sides at that level.

"We might not win every game for the rest of the season, but we want to put ourselves in a winnable position ... we didn't give ourselves a chance from the first 10 minutes today."