AFL 1 year ago

Cats eye percentage-boosting win

  • Cats eye percentage-boosting win

    GEELONG, AUSTRALIA - JULY 29: Jimmy Bartel of the Cats celebrates a goal in his 300th game during the 2016 AFL Round 19 match between the Geelong Cats and the Western Bulldogs at Simonds Stadium on July 29, 2016 in Geelong, Australia. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Geelong ruckman Zac Smith says it's important his side bank a percentage-boosting AFL win on Sunday when they face Essendon.

The Cats are locked in a tight battle for a top-four berth, with just 0.1 of a percentage point separating them and fifth-placed Adelaide on the ladder.

Smith acknowledged his team must make the most of a meeting with cellar-dwelling Essendon.

"It's a big opportunity to boost our percentage," Smith said on Thursday.

"We've got a really big opportunity over the next month.

"Obviously, we want to get the win and the four points but, to boost your percentage, when it's this close, would be a really big bonus."

The Crows will look to do the same against Brisbane in round 20.

"It's so tight at the top ... it's going to be a really, really tight squeeze - particularly into the top four," Smith said.

Geelong struggled when they faced Essendon in round four at the MCG, only kicking clear in the final quarter to prevail by 30 points.

Chris Scott's side face Essendon, Richmond, Brisbane and Melbourne in a cushy run to September.

However, three of Geelong's five defeats this year have come against sides in the bottom half of the ladder.

"Hopefully, we learned our lesson from those few games we dropped earlier in the season," Smith said.

"We really need to win these games to have a real crack at the finals."

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