GEELONG assistant coach Corey Enright has backed Gary Ablett and his fellow senior Cats to bounce back to form in Friday’s AFL semi-final against West Coast.
Ablett was well held by Collingwood’s Brayden Maynard and was among a number of key Geelong players to have their colours lowered in their qualifying final loss.
“You do back your stars in, your champions in. They’ve been there, they’ve done it so they understand what it takes and what’s required,” Enright told AAP.
“So Gary would be the first person to put his hand up and say he needs to play a little bit better than he did on on the weekend. And I’m sure that he will respond in the right way.”
The Cats were criticised for their slow ball movement and a lack of forward potency against the Magpies, but Enright said they could deliver an improved performance while sticking to their current style.
“It’s just important that we obviously keep playing our way and keep backing our system in and it’s worked for so long throughout the year,” Enright said.
“So we obviously want to take our chances when we go forward – we missed a few opportunities early in the game which would have made the scoreboard look a bit different – but continuing to play our way for long periods of the game.”
Enright said a call would be made on forward Gary Rohan, who is dealing with a knee issue, after training on Thursday while the Cats will also have to consider how they deal with West Coast ruck duo Nic Naitanui and Tom Hickey.
The Geelong forward group will also have the task of dealing with West Coast’s formidable defensive unit, with Jeremy McGovern and Brad Sheppard key to a group that generates attacking opportunities from the back half.
“It’s a huge strength of theirs, they’ve obviously played together for a long time and all those players – they’ve got All-Australians across the board there so it’s going to be a huge challenge for our boys,” Enright said.
“We’re under no illusions what it’s going to take and we’ll have to get a game plan that’s going to complement what we can do.”
© AAP 2019