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McCarthy eyes return

Ben Guthrie - AFL Media  April 16, 2018 12:41 PM

Lincoln McCarthy has turned the corner in his recovery and is eyeing a return to playing within the next month. - Geelong Cats,Lincoln McCarthy

Lincoln McCarthy has turned the corner in his recovery and is eyeing a return to playing within the next month.

Small forward Lincoln McCarthy has turned the corner in his recovery and is eyeing a return to playing within the next month after a long injury layoff.

McCarthy has not played since round three, 2017, after groin surgery last May was followed by hip surgery in August.

The dynamic forward also had a setback after the Christmas break when he hurt his quad at training.

"I'm back in main training now, so doing everything (at) full (capacity), which has been really nice," McCarthy told K Rock radio on Sunday.

"I'm feeling really good, so probably now we just need to get a bit of time training with the boys and really pushing the limits before I'm able to play.

"There's a bye in the VFL in three weeks and I want to play in two weeks, but I might have to wait four."

Geelong's VFL team has its bye on April 27 and it appears likely McCarthy could play the following week against Collingwood on May 13.

McCarthy said he was desperately looking forward to regaining some continuity in his football.

The small forward has been hit hard by injury over his 27-game career after being taken with pick No.66 in the 2011 NAB AFL Draft.

McCarthy was sidelined for the entire 2013 and 2015 seasons after injuring the navicular bone in his left foot, while he was out for 12 weeks in the 2014 season after he injured his back.

McCarthy is an exceptional mark above his head for a player who stands 178cm, while the pressure he applies to the opposition has been greatly missed in his time in rehab.

"I haven't had much of a go at nailing that role yet," McCarthy said.

"So I'd like to get a solid 15 or 16 weeks before finals and really try to work on some good forward stuff and work with the big guys in that genuine small forward role.

"I'd also like to learn some midfield stoppage stuff, because when I'm needed guys can rotate through the forward line for a bit of a rest."

Meanwhile Geelong is awaiting the results of scans on Cory Gregson's injured left foot.

The small forward, who missed nearly two seasons of football with his own navicular injury, suffered the injury in the second quarter of Sunday evening's game against St Kilda at GMHBA Stadium.

Stand Proud in 2018