Friday, April 23

GEELONG will be without its form midfielder James Kelly when it attempts to beat Fremantle in the west for the first time in three years on Sunday.

Kelly strained his hip against Richmond on Saturday night and pulled up sore yesterday after aggravating the muscle during Wednesday's training.

Geelong football manager Garry Davidson said they were not prepared to take the risk with Kelly, hoping he will miss just one week.

``It's just a bit of a twinge. He trained on Wednesday but pulled up a bit sore yesterday morning. The medical opinion is he will miss one week or so.

``It's a bit of a niggle. We opted not to risk it (because) he is in some good form, which is terrific for him.''

Gary Ablett is expected to be a straight swap for Kelly, while Darren Milburn is also expected to slot back into the backline, possibly at the expense of Jarad Rooke.

Brent Moloney has been named on an extended bench, along with fellow inclusion Matthew McCarthy.

While Kelly will be sorely missed, Fremantle has also taken a hit, losing in-form forward Troy Longmuir, while utility Matthew Carr is again unavailable.

The Dockers are cruising in fifth place on the ladder with three wins from four games heading into the match, but will miss Longmuir's presence in the forward line.

He kicked four crucial goals in the Dockers' win over Adelaide in round three and added another two in last week's 34-point win over Collingwood.

The Dockers' pace in their own backyard will test Geelong, while the Aaron Sandilands and Matthew Pavlich-led spine makes the Dockers outfit a double-edged sword.

But Davidson said the rejuvenated Cats played well at Subiaco and expects nothing less than an improvement on last week's performance.

``We do play quite well at Subiaco Oval, we've lost at times and not taken the four points but we still play very good footy there,'' he said.