The reason behind Jason Horne-Francis’ shock axing has been revealed with the young star failing to meet standards at the club.
North Melbourne’s decision to drop the number one draft pick ahead of his first AFL game back in South Australia, his home state, left fans around the league scratching their heads.
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On Friday night however the reasons behind the decision to ax him where detailed by Channel 7 journalist Mitch Cleary.
Cleary said the 18-year-old was left out of North Melbourne’s squad for “disobeying his coach” last weekend.
“The star teenager was called out by interim coach Leigh Adams and senior players on Sunday for failing to complete his proper ice baths and recovery in front of their very eyes,” Cleary reported.
“I have spent this morning with a dozen teammates training in Melbourne (instead of traveling with the squad).”
Horne-Francis will now run out in the VFL after failing to live up to the club’s “Monday to Friday” expectations.
Former North Melbourne great Brent Harvey opened up on the Horne-Francis axing.
“There’s some stuff that we call Monday to Friday, it’s preparation stuff – you need to tick the boxes,” Harvey said on RSN Radio.
“This is not just about Jason … (Caretaker coach) Leigh Adams has got very good standards, I’ve got to be a little bit careful … but we’ve got players not playing in our team and I’ll name one right now : Kayne Turner.
“He would run through brick walls for every single one of his teammates and every single one of his supporters – he does everything right.
“If he’s not playing, he’s playing in the reserves at the minute, you’d want to be doing everything right to make sure you’re holding up your end of the bargain. We call that Monday to Friday and if you haven’t got your Monday to Friday in order, that’s just not good enough right now.
“Was it good enough in Round 3, Round 4, Round 5? Maybe.
“But with Leigh Adams in charge, the standards have gone to another level and players have to play their part. Monday to Friday is just as important as performing on game day for us.
“There’s not just one incident where we’ve just said (to Horne-Francis): ‘Nah, you’re not playing because of this’. It’s not that at all, everything comes into calculations, the form side of it, what he’s doing after stoppage. There’s so much that comes into it.”
Horne-Francis immediately postponed contract extension negotiations after he was drafted by the club last year.
His two-year draft deal expires at the end of the 2023 season and both Adelaide and Port Adelaide are said to be heavily circling the teenage star.