New faces get chance to shine

Lui Zacher
February 22, 2023 / 8:30 pm

OFF-season acquisitions Jack Bowes, Tanner Bruhn and Ollie Henry will have the chance to impress Geelong’s coaching staff, with the trio to play a key role in the AFL section of Thursday’s practice match against Hawthorn.

Twenty-two days out from their season-opener, the Cats will play eight 30-minute periods against the Hawks, with players from both clubs’ AFL and VFL lists to see action.

However, it is early in the contest that Bowes (Gold Coast), Bruhn (GWS Giants) and Henry (Collingwood) will get a chance to shine.

Bowes and Bruhn will likely spend time in the midfield, while Henry can swing forward and back.

“It’s exciting to see where they’re at as individuals and how much they’ve picked up of how we play as a team,” assistant coach Shaun Grigg said.

“We understand it’s not going to be perfect – we don’t expect it to be.

“We’re looking forward to seeing what some of those guys can do.”

First-round draft pick Jhye Clark and incoming rookie quartet Osca Riccardi, Oscar Murdoch, Ted Clohesy and Irishman Oisin Mullin will also be sighted throughout the evening.

However, draftee Phoenix Foster (quad) won’t play.

Star forward Tom Hawkins and young bigs Shannon Neale and Toby Conway will be sidelined, while veteran duo Isaac Smith and Mitch Duncan will unlikely take the field.

“There’s always those conversations, particularly with our more experienced guys,” Grigg said.

“Those guys with a lot of footy behind them don’t necessarily need all the practice match minutes; they’re good with the individualised programs.”

Grigg says the reigning premier is keen, after a solid block of work since mid-January, to come up against an opponent.

“It’s only so far you can take it competing against each other when everyone knows what the other team is going to do,” he said.

“Our boys are in a pretty good position; they’ve got a good base of fitness behind them.

“They turned up in good shape, and they’re hungry to go.”

Geelong will follow the clash with the Hawks with a trip to Brisbane and a meeting with the Lions next Thursday.

The Cats open their premiership defence against preliminary finalist Collingwood at the MCG on March 17.


AFL Rhys Stanley 1
AFL Zach Tuohy 2
AFL Brandan Parfitt 3
AFL Tanner Bruhn 4
AFL Jeremy Cameron 5
AFL Isaac Smith 7
AFL Jake Kolodjashnij 8
AFL Max Holmes 9
AFL Mitchell Knevitt 10
AFL Cooper Whyte 11
AFL Jack Bowes 12
AFL Jhye Clark 13
AFL Jonathon Ceglar 15
AFL Sam De Koning 16
AFL Esava Ratugolea 17
AFL Tyson Stengle 18
AFL Osca Riccardi 21
AFL Jed Bews 24
AFL Sam Menegola 27
AFL Ollie Dempsey 28
AFL Cameron Guthrie 29
AFL Tom Atkins 30
AFL Oscar Murdoch 31
AFL Gryan Miers 32
AFL Oisin Mullin 34
AFL Patrick Dangerfield 35
AFL Ollie Henry 36
AFL Jack Henry 38
AFL Zach Guthrie 39
AFL Ted Clohesy 40
AFL Mark O’Connor 42
AFL Tom Stewart 44
AFL Brad Close 45
AFL Mark Blicavs 46
VFL Brayden Ham 47
VFL Daniel Capiron 50
VFL Matty Lloyd 52
VFL Jack Leonard 53
VFL Jamie Quick 54
VFL Bailey Van De Heuvel 55
VFL Jye Charlcraft 57
VFL Harry Benson 59
VFL Lachlan Bond 60
VFL Marcus Herbert 62
VFL Benjamin Worme 63
VFL Thomas Panuccio 64
VFL Tanner Lewis 66
VFL Tyler Norton 67
VFL Tom Feely 68
VFL Will Christie 71
VFL Ben Lloyd 74
VFL Ryan Eyers 75
VFL Angus Byrne 81


Image: Patrick Dangerfield in action against Hawthorn last year. (Sports Media Image/Marcel Berens)