Hungry Chapman seizes chance to prove his worth

ACCEPTING CHALLENGE: Paul Chapman prepares to lay a tackle on Bulldog veteran Tony Liberatore. Photo: GEELONG ADVERTISER  
Monday, May 27

GEELONG'S Paul Chapman was determined to make this opportunity count.

In his third year at the club, the 20-year-old has played only a handful of senior games but knows that with the depth developing at the club he has to quickly make his mark.

On Saturday he did so in the most emphatic manner.

Chapman was clearly Geelong's best small man on the ground, picking up 26 possessions and kicking three goals.

``I think not getting a game, it makes me more hungry,'' he said.

``I haven't been given heaps of opportunities.

``I've been in the reserves and Bomber's been talking to me about working on certain things and I've been working on them and getting them right and I've been given an opportunity now.''

Chapman admits that in the past he's struggled to have an impact when given his chance in the seniors.

``The past few years, when I've played in the seniors, I've struggled to get a few kicks,'' he said.

But like a true team man he says playing well in a losing side counted for little.

``I thought everybody played well but at the end it doesn't really mean much does it, when you've lost the game?

``Personally it was a good game but for the team not so good. We let the Bulldogs back in again at the end of the second quarter.''

Chapman played a wing/half forward role and made the most of his opportunities against a succession of Bulldogs.

``I started off with Rohan Smith, then Lindsay Gilbee for a little while and Kingsley Hunter for a while,'' he said.

``They're all pretty good players.''

Chapman, who has modelled his game on Collingwood captain Nathan Buckley, said he had worked hard in the preseason to improve his fitness and aerobic capacity.

``I was a Collingwood supporter so a Buckley ... I'd love to be able to run around like a Buckley,'' he said.

``One day hopefully I'll be there.''

One game does not make a season, but yesterday Chapman took another step.