The Roar
The Roar

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Cats win big at home, again

Gary Ablett (Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
25th August, 2018
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Brimming with confidence and in ominous form, Geelong have powered into the AFL finals on the back of successive triple-figure victories after thumping Gold Coast by 102 points.

With Patrick Dangerfield in ominous form and former Suns skipper Gary Ablett among the home side’s best players, the Cats strolled to a 22.10 (142) to 5.10 (40) victory on Saturday at GMHBA Stadium.

They will improve one spot to seventh on the ladder should GWS beat Melbourne on Sunday.

The Cats could hardly have had a more stress-free run-in to their 11th AFL finals campaign in the space of 12 years, with Saturday’s demolition job on the Suns coming seven days after a 133-point annihilation of Fremantle at the same venue.

“Our ambition all along is to hit the end of the year in good form with good availability and great confidence in our game and I think we’ve done as much as we could have over the past couple of weeks to achieve that,” said coach Chris Scott.

“Even across the season I think the numbers reflect that we’re in pretty good form.

“In terms of points against I think we’ll end the season ranked one and probably in the top four in attack as well.

“The way the system is set up it really is about getting into the tournament and playing your best footy.

“Clearly we’d like to be higher up the ladder. We can’t control that now but I think it’s a really open finals series.”

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The Cats’ ‘holy trinity’ all came to the party on Saturday with Patrick Dangerfield booting four goals and amassing a team-high 34 possessions, while receiving great support from Joel Selwood and Ablett.

“I don’t think there’s any secret there that we think (Dangerfield) is a challenge for the opposition when he is deep forward, but he’s been really good as a mid too,” said Scott.

“We’ve been working for a long time to try and develop a group of players that give us that flexibility.

Fellow onballer Cam Guthrie spent most of the final term on the bench nursing a corked thigh, but Scott insisted he was in no danger of missing out on the elimination final in two weeks’ time.

The match could not have got off to a worse start for the Suns, who lost key defender Jack Leslie to a knee injury early in the first term.

With Port Adelaide coming up well short at home to Essendon on Friday night, the Cats were guaranteed a spot in the finals regardless of the result of Saturday’s match.

After starting the season brightly, second-bottom Gold Coast’s only win in their last 17 games was against Sydney in round 18.