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2021 Toyota AFL Premiership
Round 14 • Geelong Cats v Western Bulldogs
GMHBA Stadium Geelong
83 12.11
Full Time Cats by 5
78 11.12
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    All Eyes On... Round 14

    Here's what geelongcats.com.au will be keeping our eye on ahead of Friday's night's blockbuster battle with the Bulldogs

    All Eyes On… The Danger Zone

    Unfortunately, there’ll be no fans coming down the highway at this stage but the Bulldogs could be riding right into their own version of the danger zone on Friday night.  

    Paddy Dangerfield’s long-awaited return to football last week ended up almost lost among talk of players sleeping under tables, Jeremy Cameron’s nine pre-game Moccona’s, Melbourne’s fog, and of course the stirring win itself, but the signs were good.

    The Dogs will be hoping it’ll be a little while yet before he reaches the peak of his powers if past performances are anything to go by.  

    In the seven meetings since he crossed from Adelaide ahead of the 2016 season, #35 has averaged 30.7 disposals, kicked 13 goals, and scooped up 14 of a possible 21 Brownlow votes. That tally includes his 36 disposal, 12 tackle, 10 clearance, six inside 50 masterpiece on the day the Brownlow Stand opened back in May, 2017.

    All Eyes On… The Grudge Match

    Whether the sign out the front says Skilled, Simonds or GMHBA, Kardinia Park has not been a happy hunting ground for the Bulldogs over the years.  

    We have to go back to Round 16, 2003 to see the last time they headed back up the freeway with the four points, and across the board, the Cats have won 17 of their last 20 encounters. But sometimes history can be a bit misleading.

    The two sides have split the last four games, and other than the Cats’ 44 point win in May 2019 which looks like an outlier, the other three have been decided by 9, 16, and 2 points respectively.  

    And this is a very different Dogs team – stars on almost every line, and a couple of genuine match winners. It’s no accident they’re in second place with a percentage of 150 – 18% ahead of the ladder-leading Demons.

    It’s been a long time between drinks but they’ll like their chances, the Dogs, but you can bet Chris Scott will have his boys ready.

    00:40 Mins
    Published ago

    Cats vs Dogs

    The ultimate decider. It's time for you choose - Cats or Dogs. Presented by Whiskas and Pedigree.

    Published ago

    All Irish Eyes On… The Bont

    Speaking of match winners, most will have Marcus Bontempelli near or at the top of their mid-season Brownlow predictions, and if the Dogs are to break their Kardinia Park hoodoo, it’s likely he will figure prominently.

    So far this season he is above average for disposals (26.9), tackles (4.9), clearances (4.8), rates Elite for AFL Fantasy (111) and his 17 goals show he can hit the scoreboard too.

    Sounds like a job for Mark O’Connor.

    It wasn’t that long ago that the Irishman was being hailed as the game’s next great tagger with the scalps of Brownlow Medallist’s Lachie Neale and Tom Mitchell hanging off of his belt, so it’d be fair to assume he goes to Bontempelli at the first bounce.

    Unless he goes to Jack Macrae or Tom Liberatore.

    All Eyes On… The Lockdown

    The lights are a little bit brighter on Friday night and the glare, from Fox Footy to talkback radio, a little more intense.

    All eyes are already on the midfielders, and why not.

    Danger, Selwood, Duncan v Bontempelli, Macrae, Liberatore. The depth of each sides’ middlemen is such that you could list three different names to what’s we have here and it’d still be formidable. And then there’s the forwards, Jezza, Hawk, and the Orange Flash up against English, Bruce, and the Astronaught.

    But it could be at the other end of the ground where this one is won or lost.  

    Caleb Daniel might be the only Dogs backman you’ve heard of, but as a collective, they’re the League’s stingiest back six.  The second stingiest? Geelong. While we’d love to see an old-fashioned Kardinia Park shootout, it may be that the defence that squeezes the tightest makes all the difference.

     

    Gary The Great: Cats Win Thriller After Siren

    Geelong has recorded a thrilling five-point win against the Bulldogs on Friday night

    GARY Rohan landed a match-winning goal after the siren to clinch Geelong victory – and premiership favouritism – over the Western Bulldogs in a heart-stopper on Friday night. 

    In shades of Billy Brownless against the same opponents 27 years earlier, Rohan sank the Dogs with a 45m set shot deep in the left forward pocket in front of 6583 fans at GMHBA Stadium. 

    After a gather from Cam Guthrie on the wing and release to Isaac Smith, Rohan marked strongly in front of an oncoming Taylor Duryea in the dying seconds before landing Geelong its sixth straight win, 12.11 (83) to 11.12 (78). 

    01:31 Mins
    Published ago

    Absolute Scenes As Rohan Wins It After Siren

    Watch the incredible moment Gary Rohan wins the game for Geelong after the siren

    Published ago

    Comeback Dog Toby McLean looked to have secured the Dogs a major scalp on enemy territory just moments earlier, dribbling a goal in his first game after a ruptured ACL nine months ago. 

    However, Rohan had other ideas, his goal the 13th lead change in an epic see-sawing affair and extended the Dogs' losing streak at the venue to 10 games. 

    Billed as a mouth-watering blockbuster between two top-four sides, the first quarter offered little as both sides traded mistakes and one goal apiece. 

    It came to life in the second term when Josh Bruce kicked the best of his three goals with a brilliant snap from the right forward pocket before Geelong threatened to blow the game open, regaining the lead with three goals in a two-minute burst. 

    03:09 Mins
    Published ago

    Final Two Mins: Cats Pinch Classic

    Enjoy the thrilling final moments between the Cats and Dogs at GMHBA Stadium

    Published ago

    After the Cats lost Mitch Duncan to a knee injury in the first term, Aaron Naughton was subbed out at half-time with rib damage before Dogs teammate Anthony Scott bobbed up with two third-quarter goals. 

    Dogs skipper Marcus Bontempelli, who was impressive throughout, made time stop around him with a left-foot snap out of a contest before Geelong rallied again. 

    Misses from Bontempelli and Scott to start the final term ultimately proved costly as the lead changed a further three times in the final term before Rohan decided the outcome. 

    Tom Stewart finished with 15 intercept disposals in a best-on-ground performance that saved the undersized Cats defence on numerous occasions.

    Pair of guns subbed out 

    Cat Mitch Duncan and Dog Aaron Naughton would sit among the top handful of each club's most important players and both finished the game in tracksuits. Duncan was taken out of the game after twisting his knee in a marking contest in the first quarter. After a short-lived attempt to strap it up, he was replaced by Quinton Narkle. Naughton then copped a hit to his ribs from Jed Bews on the half-time siren and took close to a minute to get to his feet before Mitch Wallis took his place for the second half. 

    00:27 Mins
    Published ago

    Duncan Subbed Out

    Geelong have suffered a huge injury concern with Mitch Duncan being subbed out of the game following this awkward landing

    Published ago

    Tough Dog beats the clock 

    Western Bulldogs premiership forward Toby McLean was recalled as a late inclusion on Friday night, just a tick over nine months after rupturing his ACL. The 25-year-old replaced Stefan Martin (shoulder) in the Dogs' side and, apart from an injury scare during the third quarter, didn't miss a beat to finish with 21 disposals. McLean was fit to return at VFL level three weeks ago before the competition was put into hiatus due to COVID-19, meaning his return against the Cats came without any formal match practice.

    Fetch it yourself

    Isaac Smith would've been excused for thinking he was back playing for Redan in the Ballarat Football League. The triple-premiership Hawk, who was plucked out of local footy as a 22-year-old, was forced to go and pick up his own ball from over the fence in a vacant Gary Ablett Terrace during the second quarter. Given the 7000-cap on local fans due to COVID-19, the end behind each goals were left vacated, aside from a small group of the Geelong cheer squad at the Barwon River end. 

    GEELONG                                1.4       6.6       9.10     12.11 (83) 
    WESTERN BULLDOGS             1.4       5.5       9.8       11.12 (78)

    GOALS
    Geelong: Cameron 2, Menegola 2, Rohan 2, Close, Hawkins, Dahlhaus, Selwood, Ratugolea, Parfitt
    Western Bulldogs: Bruce 3, Scott 2, Liberatore, Weightman, Johannisen, Bontempelli, Daniel, McLean

    BEST
    Geelong: Stewart, Selwood, Menegola, Smith, Dangerfield, Parfitt
    Western Bulldogs: Liberatore, Bontempelli, Macrae, Bruce, Daniel, Williams

    INJURIES
    Geelong: Duncan (knee), Henderson (hip) replaced in selected side by Narkle 
    Western Bulldogs: Naughton (ribs), Martin (shoulder) replaced in selected side by McLean

    SUBSTITUTES
    Geelong: Higgins (replaced Duncan)
    Western Bulldogs: Wallis (replaced Naughton)

    Crowd: 6583 at GMHBA Stadium

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