Carlton key defender Michael Jamison says the Blues hope Jarrad Waite’s starring role in the club’s win over North Melbourne is a wake-up call for the talented forward.
Jamison says Waite’s inconsistency is frustrating, particularly as he’s such an important player in the side.
Waite kicked a season-high four goals and grabbed 11 marks last round in Carlton’s 23-point AFL win, which was their sixth in 17 games this season.
After kicking 27 goals in an injury-prone 2013 season, Waite has scored just 17 in 11 matches in 2014.
“You only have to look at last week how important Waitey is to us, when he comes back in the team after a couple of weeks out and kicks four goals,” Jamison told a media conference on Monday.
“It surely highlighted to him how important he is to us and how much we need him and also the things we need from him to be a good player.
“It’s now up to him to do that for the rest of the five weeks and stay in the side.
“It’s the same with any teammate who’s inconsistent and it’s only highlighted with Jarrad because his good is so good and so important to us.
“We get frustrated when anyone is up and down. But when someone is so good and so necessary for the side, it’s frustrating.
“But it’s countered by how good he is and how rapt we are when he’s up and about like he is at the moment.”
Waite was third in Carlton’s best and fairest in 2007, but the 31-year-old is coming out of contract and his future at the club is uncertain.
The Blues are out of finals contention and face a tough challenge on Thursday night in Perth against fourth-placed Fremantle.
Jamison says the Blues are determined to avoid having a season that’s a “full waste”.
“Against North, that was our best full game and it certainly does set a great platform. It sets a benchmark,” he said.
“We know we can do it now so that has to be the minimum expectations and we’ll certainly take those expectations in against Fremantle and for the month following that as well.”