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Dobby a master for young Cats

Angus Kramer  March 8, 2018 11:26 AM

Sam Dobson says he has plenty of room for improvement.  - Geelong Cats,VFL

Sam Dobson says he has plenty of room for improvement.

Key forward Sam Dobson is his own harshest critic.

From on outsider’s perspective, Dobson had a successful 2017 campaign at both VFL and GFL level but the key forward believes he has a lot of improvement left in him.

Forty-four goals in 10 games for local GFL club St. Mary’s was an excellent return but the former Koroit junior was disheartened he could not showcase that talent when called upon by the Cats.

 “I was happy with the GFL form but I was a little inconsistent coming into the VFL side,” he said.

“(Good form) counts at both levels but I let myself down a little sometimes in the VFL.”

Dobson slotted 22 goals for the VFL Cats last year but was in and out of the side, racking up 12 games in the blue and white hoops.

“The season was not too bad but I would like to improve on (the number of games at VFL level),” Dobson said.

 The 24-year-old is aiming for more consistency in 2018 and already has one eye on playing finals football after the Cats finished outside the top eight last season.

 Shane O’Bree’s side won the final three games of the year to give themselves a fighting chance of finals action but it was ultimately a five-game losing streak between rounds 12 and 16 that resulted in them missing out on percentage.

 “It was a little bit disappointing because we had our chances towards the end of last year, we lost three or four games we probably could have won,” Dobson said.

 “We won some games late, which showed that we were potentially good enough but we just let ourselves down (in the losses).”

 Playing finals is also a major personal goal for Dobson as he still hurts from the Cats’ elimination final loss to Essendon in 2016.

 The key forward was held goalless in the 22-point loss and wants to make amends should the Cats return to September action in 2018.

 “I’d like to play finals one more time, I was disappointed with the way I played VFL finals last time,” he said.

 With a rejuvenated list which includes proven state players such as Jordan Keras, Luke Kiel and Dean Gore, Dobson believes the Cats are primed to make a real impact this year.

 “The new boys are pretty good players and have experience on VFL lists,” Dobson said.

 “I think we are looking a little bit better this year so I’d say we are a better chance of playing finals.”

 Entering his third year with the Cats, Dobson has also become a leader in the forward line and will likely be surrounded by a host of young players from both the VFL and AFL list in 2018.

 With the likes of Esava Ratugolea, Jack Henry and many more young Cats looking to play their way into the AFL team, Dobson is a great role model to help shape them into mature forwards.

 “Some of the AFL boys are only 18 or 19 and they take the advice on board,” Dobson said.

 “The young guys at both levels are new to the system and I’m always happy to help them out.”

 The VFL Cats will kick off their 2018 campaign with a series of practice matches beginning on March 11.