CHAPMAN, PODSIADLY FIND NEWS HOMES;
By Ben Jensen twitter.com/thecattery A LOT has happened down at Simonds Stadium since season end. Enacting plans for renewal of the side began in earnest the moment the siren rang out in the Preliminary Final loss against eventual premiers Hawthorn, with the likes of Paul Chapman, Josh Hunt and James Podsiadly let go to seek opportunities elsewhere. Later, Joel Corey, legendary clubman and champion, announced his own retirement.
Before yesterday's deadline for free agent moves it was announced Podsiadly had signed with Adelaide and Chapman with Essendon. Pods joins former Geelong champion and assistant coach Brenton Sanderson and dual Premiership winning backman Darren Milburn while Chapman will play under former Cats coach Mark Thompson. No news on Hunt just yet but it is reported he's set to join Greater Western Sydney and may link with Heath Shaw who is close to an official move from the magpies.
Joel Corey was drafted from East Perth by the Cats with pick number 8 in the 1999 National Draft. Debuting in 200 against the Saints in round 17 he played five games for the season, and from then on established himself firmly in the first 18 picked. Until 2010 he was remarkably resilient against injury, but a knee complaint that season forced him to miss ten games between rounds five and fourteen. But he went on to play most remaining matches that season and 21 games the following including the Premiership. He won the Carji Greeves medal as Geelong's best and fairest player in 2005 and 2008 and was also All Australian twice, in 2007 and 2008. He was not a prolific goalkicker, booting 79 goals in his 276 games but had a knack for long goals, often scoring nine pointers in the NAB Cup.
In other news around the club Trent West and Taylor Hunt are going nowhere, according to their manager. Anthony McConville rubbish claims the contracted duo were looking elsewhere for opportunity, although we would certainly not blame West if he did. The ruckman was nudged out of the side in the second half of the season, spending the remainder in the VFL.
The jungle drums have gone remarkably quiet the last week or so on Travis Varcoe. Two-time Premiership winning Varcoe has had a horror couple seasons with injury and lately form since the memorable 2011 Premiership, and was expected to head north. On October 8 Cats list management Tzar Stephen Wells said There has been inquiries from other clubs but it's highly unlikely that Travis is going anywhere."
Also confirmed as remaining with the club are youngsters Shane Kersten and Joel Hamling, both yet to make their AFL debuts but certainly will next season, pending no injuries. In fact Kersten very nearly made a rare debut in a final as the Cats' brains trust tossed up whether or not to stick with Tom Hawkins or to try the unproven forward who had been a goal machine in the VFL. With Pods gone expect Kersten to line up in round one next season next to Hawkins.
Rookies Ryan Bathie and Cameron Eardley were released by the club; one may get picked up by another club in the forthcoming National and Rookie drafts.
JOEL COREY IN 2003
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