Mitch Duncan made a successful return in the Geelong’s 15-point loss to Werribee in a practice match at Deakin University on Friday.
In conditions that no sleeved jersey could fix, Werribee prevailed 8.3 (51) to 5.6 (36).
Duncan wasn’t the only AFL listed player in action, with Jack Henry and Mark O’Connor providing plenty of dash off half back to be named in the Cats’ best.
The visitors opened the scoring, but it didn’t take long for the Cats to answer.
Jye Chalcraft replied with a snap from 25 metres out and set Aaron Black up for a snag towards the end of the quarter.
Scoring was low through the first half, with Werribee leading by just a goal at the break.
Another low scoring term saw only two goals from Geelong, but there were still some quality skills on display.
Henry and O’Connor were at their creative best down back, while Dan Capiron was using the ball beautifully to help set up transition through the midfield.
Inside 50s were a positive heading into the third, Geelong just needed to convert on their opportunities.
The first 10 minutes of third quarter was a contested arm wrestle.
Black kicked his second for the match five minutes in, only for the lights to go out another five minutes later.
The third quarter was deemed over due to the circumstances, with Geelong leading by 11 points.
In another interesting turn of events, Werribee seemed to be kicking the same way in the fourth quarter as they did in the third.
Kicking against the breeze made it tough for Geelong, as the opposition scored four unanswered goals.
There were plenty of promising signs from the match despite the bitter conditions.
New recruit Teia Miles played with skilful composure down back and looks like a staple of the Geelong defense this year.
The Bendigo Bank Cats will open their VFL campaign against Coburg at GMHBA Stadium on Saturday 4 April.
Geelong 2.1 4.3 5.5 5.6 (36)
Werribee 3.1 4.1 4.2 8.3 (51)
Goals: Black 2, O’Connor, Chalcraft, Herbert
Best: Henry, Reid, O’Connor, Miles, Burgess, Capiron