AFL 2 years ago

Cats won't throw Blicavs into the ruck

  • Cats won't throw Blicavs into the ruck

    MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 11: Mark Blicavs of the Cats handballs whilst being tackled by Jack Ziebell of the Kangaroos during the round 12 AFL match between the Geelong Cats and the North Melbourne Kangaroos at Etihad Stadium on June 11, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Geelong coach Chris Scott won't throw Mark Blicavs into the ruck as the utility attempts to rediscover his career-best AFL form.

Blicavs is one of a handful of Cats who have dropped off in recent weeks, coinciding with the club's slide down the ladder.

The reigning best and fairest will be desperate to lift ahead of finals, starting with Saturday's home match against Adelaide.

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Blicavs has played no shortage of roles in his 82-game career in the hoops.

Scott acknowledges there is an argument the former steeplechaser is at his best as a mobile ruckman.

But Scott knows with Zac Smith and Rhys Stanley in the same side it will be hard for Blicavs to contest many centre bounces this year.

"The combination of Smith and Stanley in the ruck for us has been a positive so we won't be weakening that strength to try and improve Mark a little bit," Scott said.

"If it was a situation where he was playing poorly in the position that we were choosing him to play in, we'd move him.

"We don't think it's that. We just think there are small parts at the margin with his game that he's not quite doing as well as he can.

"But he's still played some really good footy for us this year."

Scott backed Blicavs, who joined the club as a rookie and dedicated himself to the sport after failing to qualify for the 2012 Olympics, to rediscover his best.

"He sets a high standard for himself. He's a best and fairest winner now and he hasn't quite reached those levels this year," he said.

"With the way he works and the way we think our team is building, we're confident he will reach those levels again."

The Cats made two changes for their clash with the Crows, recalling 2007 Brownlow medallist Jimmy Bartel and young defender Jed Bews in place of Lachie Henderson (concussion) and Jordan Murdoch (dropped).

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