April 20 2003

THE CATS opened their account with a much needed victory over Melbourne yesterday at Skilled Stadium in front of a crowd of 23,001. In a sloppy affair up until three quarter time, when Geelong lead by just eight points, neither team could obtain a lead of more than eight points. Skill levels were quite poor, other than a couple of screamers by Demon Russell Robertson and Geelong backman come forward Darren Milburn.

In the final quarter, best on field Cameron Ling collected fourteen possessions, including ten kicks. Kent Kingsley booted the final four goals of the match to finish with a 'lazy' five. Once again Gary Ablett starred in the midfield, as did Corey Enright, Joel Corey and comeback-kid James Bartel. Bartel, playing in the AFL for the first time this season, booted Geelong's first goal of the match in the opening minute. Melbourne Captain David Neitz quickly equalised and added a second soon afterwards, but was to only have two more possessions (one kick, one handpass) for the remainder of the match.

Spearhead Cameron Mooney limped from the field in the first quarter with an ankle injury, and although he returned to the field, was generally ineffective and is not expected to play against St Kilda next Sunday. Will Slade was taken from the field, concussed after a clash with Demon Adem Yze. Yze is expected to come under investigation for the clash, although after the match senior Geelong players were chatting casually with him. Gary Ablett left the field with minutes left in the match with an injured shoulder.

In a superb all round team performance, Jarad Rooke (20 possessions), Matthew Scarlett (nullified Dees Captain Neitz), Brent Grgic (15 poss, 1 goal) and Ben Graham contributed significantly. As mentioned earlier, next Sunday Geelong face the Saints in an 'Away' game at Telstra Dome.

GEELONG 2.0 4.5 7.9 13.12 (90) defeated
MELBOURNE 3.1 4.6 6.7 6. 8 (44)
Goals: Geelong: K Kingsley 5, D Clarke 2, J Bartel, P Riccardi, B Grgic, G Ablett, D Milburn, C Enright.
Melbourne: D Neitz 2, C Heffernan, B Green, S Godfrey, C Bruce.



Both courtesy of the CATS CLAW Message Board