At Selection – Round 10

May 15, 2024 7:40 pm in by

Geelong have left out 840 games of AFL experience in a selection gamble for their clash with Gold Coast in Darwin after opting to rest premiership stars Tom Hawkins, Mitch Duncan and Rhys Stanley.

The trio did not travel with the Cats’ squad this week, joining fellow veteran Jeremy Cameron (concussion) on the sidelines as coach Chris Scott attempts to negotiate a six-day break between matches.

Scott’s “complicated” selection call comes with Geelong on a two-match losing skid heading into the Suns encounter at TIO Stadium on Thursday night.

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“You can’t satisfy every requirement every single week, but as a guide, we try not to get too beholden to the opposition we’re playing,” Scott told reporters on Wednesday.

“We do think a little bit about the length of break and the venue and those sorts of things, but the overwhelming priority is to look at it at the individual level.

“Tom Hawkins, Mitch Duncan and Rhys Stanley, I’m loath to say ‘at their age’ because their age is not necessarily the deciding factor.

“It’s more just how we think about their season overall.”

Scott first publicly flagged a rest for Hawkins in the immediate aftermath of last Friday night’s home defeat to Port Adelaide.

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Fellow key forward Cameron was put in concussion protocols the following day after he experienced delayed symptoms from hitting his head in a heavy fall from a marking contest.

Scott admitted it prompted a brief reconsideration of the plan to rest Hawkins, who is now poised to break long-time teammate Joel Selwood’s record for games played for Geelong in a home clash with Greater Western Sydney next week.

Six-game forward Shannon Neale, a 203cm prospect, has been recalled to provide a tall target in the Cats’ forward line against Gold Coast after kicking three goals in a win over North Melbourne in his only previous senior appearance this season.

Three-game ruckman Toby Conway, Jack Bowes and Tanner Bruhn have also been included.

“In the end, our medium-term planning overrode that potential need to get Tom into the team,” Scott said.

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“Shannon Neale’s someone we’ve been trying to get into the team for a while.

“He came in against North Melbourne and played really well – well enough to hold his spot – but Hawkins came back the next week.

“So we think we’ve got a good ‘in’ there, and it gives us a chance to give a little bit of a different look in the conditions.

“We rarely play in this heat, but we do play in slippery conditions, so that was something that factored into our thinking.”

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BacksJack HenrySam De KoningJake Kolodjashnij
Half BacksZach GuthrieTom StewartMax Holmes
CentrelineOllie DempseyBrandan ParfittMark Blicavs
Half ForwardsBrad CloseGary RohanGryan Miers
ForwardsTyson StengleShannon NealeOllie Henry
FollowersToby ConwayCameron GuthrieJack Bowes
InterchangeMark O’ConnorTanner BruhnTom Atkins
 Jhye ClarkOisin Mullin 
EmergenciesZach TuohyMitch KnevittMark O’Connor

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