Blues Vs Cats Practice match review

Written by Big Sexy on March 12 2011

TOOT TOOT! All Aboard the Dugian express, stopping all stations to my back line!!!!
I was asked if I wanted to go and watch the practice match today at Princes park by family friends who are avid Blues supporters… and here’s what I saw:

Nick Duigan (Def 103k) got quite a few mentions in the comments of my Defensive Rookie Review, and I hadn’t seen a lot of him, so it was hard to really comment with authority… Now I can tell you.
Duigan is a 26yo mataure age recuit, with a mature and very-fit and strong looking body. This bloke was everywhere….. he won 3-4 one-on-one contests, took a couple of contested marks and a few uncontested…. Played the usual link-man role a few times, and effected one awesome turnover in the backline, kicked forward, then ran forward assisted the noodle who dropped a sitter, collected the ball again kept running and hit up a forward target, who then made another stupid decision whilst Duigan ran into space 30m out directly in front… and they didn’t use him and blazed away and cocked it up. Long story short, he was no doubt in the best 5 players on the ground for the day. He does stand-out because of his bigger build and strong work-rate. I will be making room for him in my team if (when) he gets named in round 1.
Also for the Blues:
J Gartlett (Fwd 348k) really impressed, kicked a few goals, presented well. His pace proved unmatchable and turned his opponent inside-out 3-4 times. I was quite impressed (and I’ve never liked him). The supporters I was with suggest he is better than Eddie Betts.
C Yarran (Fwd 300k) Was pretty solid and performed well… definitely worth consideration this season if he’s running off the half-back line.

Juddy didn’t have a blinder…. Did a few good things…. Just building. Gibbs was in pretty good touch and no issues if you have these two in your team

For the Cats:
Josh Cowan (Mid 110k) I initially thought he was just making up the numbers in a practice match. He looks a little scruffy with a long mop of hair…. But this kid can really play. He would have had 15-20 possies, and used the ball really well (high efficiency.. Duigan-esq). I’m not sure he’ll get a run with the Cats round one…. But keep your eye open during the season.
Dawson Simpson (Ruck 180k) With all the talk of Rucks this season people are looking for a cheap alternative…. And Simpson is a BIG and MOBILE unit…. He contests really well and was throwing his body in hard. With Blake in the bad books, he might get to back-up Ottens because of mobility. He reminds of Mumford the way he was giving it everything he had, knowing he’s not the most talented bloke on the field.
T Varcoe (Fwd 402k) Varcoe showed heaps of improvement last season, and I was impressed in 2010. I know he got injured in the international rules games, but seems to going at it like a man possessed…. I can see Varcoe becoming the Cats replacement for Ablett, as-in the got to run-past receive who then kicks forward… also a goal kicker today (and usually). He was awesome!
Steve Johnson was his usual self…. We commented at half time how he tries to make the simple look hard, and then turns it over…. And then had a blinding last quarter, stacked up the posies and kicked 3 goals and essentially won the game. Selwood was probably BOG, and Bartel wasn’t at his best, but was pretty good for a first-up run. Oh, and Joel Corey looked well over his knee injury from last season and super-fit again…. So might be worth some thought.

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19 thoughts on “Blues Vs Cats Practice match review”

  1. Hey BS, thanks for the post. Did Joel Corey play any time on half-back, which he did towards the end of last season?

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  2. Give Bartel a break BS, he got knock out during the 2nd quarter and sat out the rest of the game with concussion.

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  3. with geelong and carlton having there byes in the sc finals , i have no intention to pick any gun players…except for the rookies

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  4. Thanks PA, At the game so didn’t know that…. But the good news is it explains why he went quiet, and was good early i.e. Usual Bartel

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  5. Brad, when “I” saw Corey he was Mid and did some good kicks inside 50…. Honestly, I couldn’t believe how fit he looked and moved after an injury riddled 2010….

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  6. Cheers Big Sexy for the superb wrap up today. I’ve got a fair bit out of it.
    Duigan I am a big fan of, vice capt for Norwood last year will give ya value for money in my opinion. I share the same thoughts of Cowan when I watched him at AAMI the other week and its good to here Steve Johnson going well. Have considered him, but not locked in for round 1 just yet.

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  7. Thanks Big Sexy.

    I currently have Puopolo in my team at the moment, but am now going immediately to my team and changing him with Duigan (originally had him but removed him).

    Puopolo has a great start to the preseason but I haven’t heard a think from him in in the past 2-3 games. this would suggest to me, as we are getting to the business end of preseason, that he may not be in clarkson’s initial plans.

    Cheers

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  8. Thanks Jim-daddy. I also had him, and dropped him…. But nothing compares to seeing a player first hand with your own eyes. I think he may be the stand-out rookie defender of the season… But again, it was only one game.

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  9. RB, we have very similar players/dilemma, I personally am thinking drop McKernan (or move fwd) and bring in Duigan…. Heppel had a bad GF, but still see as a must have.

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  10. Duigan is the bloke who was booked on a on way flight to Africa to do volunteer work just after the draft but had to cancel his ticket when Carlton grabbed him. I already had him in my team cos I had the thought that clubs don’t draft 26 year-olds to play twos and he’d get early games. It’s good to know he’s a likely type too.

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