Twin rucks not for everyone, says Lion

Ed Jackson
Stefan Martin (r) doesn't believe Richmond's two-man ruck using Ivan Soldo (l) will be the norm

Brisbane ruckman Stefan Martin doesn't believe Richmond's success with two specialist ruckmen will make it a league-wide phenomenon in 2020.

The Tigers combined Ivan Soldo and Toby Nankervis to great effect in the last few weeks of the season as they claimed their second AFL premiership in the past three years.

Soldo has already indicated he'd be keen for Richmond to continue with the practice into the new season, arguing the league's 6-6-6 rule adds extra workload on a club's ruck division.

Martin says there are definite benefits to coaches picking two specialist ruckmen in a matchday squad, but the move carries risk as well.

"It will depend team-to-team and how strong your ruck division is. You're not going to want to play two just for the sake of it," the 33-year-old told AAP.

"Soldo said something about the work rate being harder and I agree with that but you need a strong ruck division to play two I think.

"Our ruck division, in my eyes, is pretty strong. It makes a compelling case to play a couple - two rucks - but there'd probably be some risks where it wouldn't be appropriate because forward pressure is arguably the most important part of the game now.

"If you don't have someone who can make a great contest up forward as a second ruck then you're losing a bit of that pressure."

Martin said despite a season with the 6-6-6 rule in place, teams were still evolving their play to deal with the restrictions on just where players could be at stoppages.

Martin said for him and Lions onballers Lachie Neale and Dayne Zorko it had been a winning rule change.

"Often I can put the ball somewhere and the boys just make it look great," he said.

"I'm really privileged to play with those guys. They're silky smooth ... a big part of why we had a better year last year.

"When you get bang for your buck, that's the exciting part as a ruck, right?

"When you get those clean ones and you actually kick goals out of it, it feels pretty exciting. Not all midfielders can do that.

"Those guys I'm with are some of the few that can make those plays that really work."