Geelong skipper Joel Selwood has pointed to his side’s emphasis on embracing this season’s hurdles and trust as driving forces by the career-best seasons of some of his teammates.

According to Champion Data, Tom Hawkins, Cameron Guthrie and Sam Menegola are the Cats most improved players according to their player rating system. Whilst most other side’s improved list includes players early in their career, the Cats have seen the greatest improvement in their more mature players.

Asked on the Cats official podcast, To the Final Bell presented by Panther Tyres, as to the reason behind Guthrie’s rise in performance, Selwood pointed to the mindset of the group as a whole was driving them forward.

 “We’ve just seen a lot of growth from a lot of players, not only Cam, but across the board, just the individuals, seeing this opportunity to take their game to the next level when you could easily look at it as being really challenging and tough and use it as an excuse, it’s sort of front up and be the man to do the job, which has been really pleasing.” Selwood said.

“The word I would use is, you just have so much trust in what we’re doing, as a system and just that the boys are going to go out and do it.”

His good friend and teammate of 14 seasons, Hawkins, has taken his game to a level which sees him leading both the Coleman Medal whilst also providing the equal most goal assists, with teammate Patrick Dangerfield, in the competition. 

Selwood said that Hawkins selflessness and the sides movement of the ball up the field that was paying dividends.

“He’s loving footy.” Selwood said.

“He always has, but it’s just flowing really well for him at the moment.

“We’re moving the ball better throughout the ground. The backs are defending extremely well so it’s a bit of everything to be honest.”

Even after putting in one of the season’s best performances against Port Adelaide, Hawkins was quick to pass on his and the sides thoughts to Gary and Jordan Ablett in their difficult times.  

“I loved his interview after the Port Adelaide game.” Selwood said.

“You know the focus on everyone else but himself.

“He understands where the work is coming from, he knows if he does his part, he will get the chocolates some days.

“But some days he won’t, but he’ll help us set up a hell of a performance anyway.”