GEELONG coach Chris Scott is supremely confident there won’t be any repeat of Gary Ablett’s undisciplined and inexplicable punch that cost the dual Brownlow medallist the first suspension of his storied career.
Ablett, 35, was due for a week off some time around the upcoming mid-season bye but it would not have been in Saturday’s home match against Sydney.
But with Geelong’s hand forced by the one-game ban for striking Suns onballer Anthony Miles on the chin last Saturday, Ablett has taken the opportunity for a break on the Gold Coast with his wife and four-month-old son Levi.
Ablett had been walking a disciplinary tightrope in previous weeks, successfully challenging a one-week ban for a high hit on Bomber Dylan Shiel and attracting scrutiny for a similar bump on North Melbourne’s Sam Wright.
But as Scott noted on Wednesday, there was no chance of Geelong trying to get the latest striking charge thrown out at the tribunal.
“He can’t explain it,” said Scott.
“So given that, let’s not make up a fictitious reason, let’s move on and concentrate on what sort of behaviour we are going to see into the future.
“I’ve got complete confidence that he knows what he needs to do from here.”
Scott said all-time greats such as Ablett had to expect opponents would try to wind them up.
The pair spoke about the Miles incident after Saturday’s match and the coach was satisfied with the outcome.
“I’m not that much older than he is,” said 43-year-old Scott, who was younger than Ablett is now when appointed Geelong coach in 2010.
‘I hope I don’t sound condescending when I deal with any of our players – much less 35-year-olds.
“It wasn’t a long conversation because he knew just as well as I did that it wasn’t the right thing to do.
“We could have sat down for half an hour and tried to work out why he did it.
“The most important thing is ‘do we think there’s a risk of it happening again?’
“Once we established that we thought that was a very, very low risk – job done.”
Patrick Dangerfield is set to return from injury to bolster the Geelong midfield against the Swans, although Scott stopped short of declaring him a certain starter.
Dangerfield missed last weekend’s win over Gold Coast with an ankle injury and has also battled a knee problem in 2019.
“We’re still not in a position to give a clear outlook on his availability but it’s more optimistic than not,” said Scott.
© AAP 2019