2005 MID-SEASON REVIEW
At the halfway mark of season 2005 Geelong are sitting comfortably with seven wins and four losses (fourth position). A positive result, yes, but two weeks ago a 9/2 win loss ratio looked a sure thing. Shock losses to Fremantle at home backed up by Friday night's loss to Collingwood at the Telstra Dome has demonstrated the unpredictable roller coaster ride that is the 2005 season. But with Brisbane and Port Adelaide both struggling and St Kilda yet to completely shrug off the off-season cobwebs, Geelong are positioned nicely to make an all out assault for September glory.
With several key players still yet to find their groove and the return of Brenton Sanderson, Joel Corey and the enigmatic Steve Johnson from injury, Geelong are staring consecutive top four finishes dead in the eye.
So far in 2005 the return of James Kelly has added fire and poise to the midfield, the Ablett and Chapman show gets more entertaining each week. Ex-Tiger Brad Ottens has fit in extremely well and the continued improvement of Josh Hunt and Henry Playfair, the latter who provides a strong weekly target across half forward, cannot be understated. Adding to that, the reliable Darren Milburn and Corey Enright, who is enjoying his best season by far, demonstrate their importance to the club's fortunes.
Round Five vs. Port Adelaide (AAMI Stadium)
Round Four vs. Essendon (Telstra Dome)
Peter Riccardi's "Goal of the Round" vs.
30,000 Members over the line
Rounds 8 & 9: The Blues and the Roos
A season without Wojcinski.
The Round 10 apparition
Ben Graham to the Superbowl
The Umpires vs. Cameron Mooney
1 Steven King -Solid without being spectacular. He might not be the dominant force he was pre-injuries, but with the arrival of Brad Ottens, he is still vitally important to the flag tilt.
2 Tom Harley -Injury and illness has curtailed the first half of the staunch defender's season. But with plenty of footy still to be played, there's more than enough time to see back to his best.
3 Jimmy Bartel -An important and courageous midfielder whose 2005 has picked up where his 2004 season left off. Was sorely missed in round three when concussed by ex-team mate Brent Moloney, undermining his importance to the midfield rotation.
4 Andrew Mackie - Has shown moments of brilliance,
like his first quarter against Richmond in round one. Will be player,
without doubt, as his football brain and slight physique continue to develop.
7 Tim Callan - When the reliable Brenton Sanderson
hangs up the boots, Callan looks the logical replacement. Has shown as
much in just nine senior appearances.
8 David Haynes - Yet to make a senior appearance
in 2005 after a hot and cold 2004. Does have pace and strong hands.
9 James Kelly - After a season ending broken leg
in 2004 Kelly has slot back in nicely and will continue to recapture his
best form as the season progresses.
10 Kane Tenace - Has plenty of pace and is progressing
well. Kicked an electrifying goal against the Kangaroos which scored him
Goal of the Round.
11 Joel Corey - Was in career best form before
a knee injury sidelined him for rounds 9, 10 and 11. Shouldn't be too
far away from resuming and has been sorely missed.
12 Will Slade - Yet to make an appearance in 2005
after a severe case of osteitis pubis ruined his 2004.
13 Tom Lonergan - Made his debut in round nine
against the Kangaroos and came away with two goals. Has Henry Playfair's
physique of two years ago but is capable of taking a strong mark.
14 Cameron Thurley - Must have been thinking "How
easy is this AFL caper?" after bagging six goals in his first fortnight.
Dropped back to the reserves for round eleven but will be better for the
experience. A reliable shot for goal who to date, hasn't registered a
behind at the top level.
15 Peter Riccardi - Still has plenty of class as
his Goal of the Round against the Western Bulldogs showed in round six.
Still an outside chance to be the third cat to break the 300 barrier behind
new Hall of Fame inductee Ian Nankervis and Sam Newman.
16 Charlie Gardiner - Still finding his way as
his hot and cold performances show, but has an ability to take a bag of
marks. Confidence is building and he kicked to important goals in the
Preliminary Final loss to Brisbane.
17 Shannon Byrnes - Along with Tenace has bucketloads
of pace and an uncanny knack around the sticks. His progress in 2005 after
four games in his debut season would be a pleasing surprise for the coaching
panel. Won the Rising Star award for his round two match against West
18 Kent Kingsley - Wrongly maligned forward who
has had a shade under 50 shots at goal already this season for a return
of 30 goals. Well on track for a 60 goal season and the day his conversion
rate improves more than it has this year already, an 80 goal season is
not out of the question.
19 Matthew Egan - VFL fullback who was taken with
one of the three selections at last year's draft. Won a call up for round
one and immediately showed plenty of courage by backing back into a pack
that contained Tiger spearhead Matthew Richardson. Promising long term
20 Steve Johnson - Enigmatic, exciting, dangerous,
injured. When's he's on the park he is a vital player. Will miss the next
month with that ankle but will play an important role later in the year.
Doesn't need a lot of possessions to break a game open.
21 Cameron Mooney - Has endured a frustrating first
half of the season due to injury and suspension. Now watched with eagle
eyes by the umpires, he bleeds blue and white and will fire for the second
half of the season to capture last season's form.
22 Henry Playfair - Has stepped up to cover the
loss of Ben Graham admirably. Was sorely missed in Friday night's encounter
with Collingwood with his strong presence up forward. Suddenly essential
to the side's makeup.
23 Nathan Ablett - Yet to make his senior debut.
24 Mark Blake - Yet to make his senior debut.
25 Matthew Spencer - Yet to make his senior debut.
26 Matthew McCarthy - Has not made a senior appearance
in 2005 and has been injured with a wrist. Bobbed up in his return in
the VFL side and kicked seven goals in the second half, including five
in third quarter to steal a much needed victory.
27 Brenton Sanderson - Has not made a senior appearance
in 2005 but has declared himself ready to go. Was a class above in the
VFL on the weekend.
28 David Johnson - Has been solid in 2005, especially
in the absence of Wojcinski. Seems to get better each week but will miss
the best part of four weeks with a hamstring injury sustained in last
29 Gary Ablett - Heavily tagged week in week out,
but is durable and just keeps standing up, getting the footy and kicking
goals. A dangerous player who can make things happen from nothing.
30 Matthew Scarlett - Like his defensive partner,
Tom Harley, is having a tough year to date after back to back All-Australian
jumpers. Can't be kept down for long and will be fired up come September.
31 Paul Chambers - Only one senior appearance to
date for the year but can step into the breech when needed.
32 Brent Prismall - Yet to make his senior debut.
33 Jarrad Rooke - Has bounced back after an injury
riddled 2004 when he only managed 11 games. Is honest, tough and broke
through for his 50th game after coming off the Rookie list in 2002.
34 James Rahilly - Has not made a senior appearance
in 2005 but was also instrumental in the VFL victory against Williamstown
on the weekend with 30 possessions.
35 Paul Chapman - Forms one half of a dangerous
small forward combination. Averaging more than a goal a game, Chapman
is again having a strong, consistent year and can comfortably push into
the middle make him even more dangerous.
36 Paul Koulouriotis - Did a hamstring in round
one and has been unable to regain his place in the side. Showed a bit
in the second half of 2004.
37 Jarrod Garth - Rookie listed player yet to make
38 Luke Buckland - Rookie listed player yet to
make his debut.
39 Darren Milburn - Consistently underrated, but
consistently brilliant 150 game veteran whose importance cannot be denied.
Bobbed up in the forward line and kicked some telling goals. A good B
& F chance.
40 David Wojcinski - Did his knee against the Eagles
in round 2 and will miss the entire season. His dash and risk taking style
41 Josh Hunt - Reaching the 50 game milestone in
round 11, Hunt just keeps getting better. Whilst media focus is commonly
on his booming left foot, his ability to take a contested mark should
not be underestimated.
42 Nick Batchelor - Rookie listed player yet to
make his debut.
44 Corey Enright - Has been the form player of
2005 after injury cruelled his 2004. Like Milburn has snuck forward on
occasion and has been rewarded with eight goals for the season and is
also in the running for the B & F.
45 Cameron Ling - Having a solid, if not spectacular
season to date, the reigning Carji Greeves medallist is still getting
plenty of the ball and looks like having another gear in waiting for the
business end of the year.
46 Tim Sheringham - Rookie listed player yet to
make his debut.
COREY ENRIGHT - "Has been the form player of 2005"
GEELONG 2004 SEASON HIGHLIGHTS DVD/VIDEO! YOURS FOR ONLY $29.95
Sports Delivered/AFL Video are the official distributor of AFL videos (including DVDs).
DAVID WOJINSKI WILL BE MISSED