NATHAN ABLETT JOINS THE CATS
TODAY GEELONG sensationally announced that it had signed Nathan Ablett under the Father-Son rule. Nathan's famous father was none other than Gary Ablett Senior, who played over 240 games for the Cats between 1984 and 1996. Nathan was not expected to join Geelong, after shunning the Geelong Falcons TAC Cup (Under-18) squad in favour of playing with mates at Modewarre in the relative lowly Bellarine Football League. Ablett, 18, doesn't turn 19 until December.
Nathan played a handful of senior games early in the season before the moronic Murdoch press intervened, hounding both Nathan and club alike. Nathan played out the season in the under-18 side. Nathan's older brother, Gary, who also played for 'Moda', has played 55 games for the Cats after making his AFL debut in round one of 2002.
It was rumoured on the Cats Claw message board as early as last week, and again last night, that Ablett was about to sign. Seasoned 'message boarders' had heard it all before, and could not believe it until SEN1116's "Deep Throat" segment this morning, along with Billy Brownless relative silence, when the rumour got legs. It was then later announced that a press conference would be held at 11:30am, moved to 2:00pm.
The Father-Son rule allows Geelong to select Nathan with their pick number 48 (ie. Third round) draft pick, an absolute bargain. Ablett is unlikely to play AFL football next year. Standing 193cm tall and tipping the scales at 85 kilograms, Ablett has some way to go before his body will withstand the rigors of regular AFL football. He will take guernsey number 23, vacated by the newly departed Daniel Foster.
Coach Mark Thompson could not contain his delight as he announced the coup. Thompson, who left a meeting with Ablett's signature over a week ago, kept 'mum' about the news, revealing it only to his wife. "It has been a really long process but it's one that's been worthwhile", Thompson said. Thompson credited club president Frank Costa for getting Nathan over the line. "Frank's just got a marvelous way about him and he just convinced him to start investing some time into his own life and talked about turning into a man and having responsibilities and how football can be a great infrastructure in developing people. Frank's just got that charm".
NATHAN ABLETT AT SKILLED STADIUM TODAY
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NATHAN ABLETT PLAYING FOR MODEWARRE IN 2003