Rhys Stanley available as Cats weight up ruck combination


“So, we think he’ll be available.

“It was a small muscle in the adductor initially, and this is more an adductor longus – the main muscle in that area.”

Stanley has been in good form this season, cementing his place as the side’s No.1 ruckman, however his replacement on Saturday Zac Smith played very well to keep the pressure on Stanley.

Scott said Smith would make way if they decided to select Stanley, but Smith’s form was good enough for the Cats to consider keeping Stanley sidelined for another week to ensure he was 100 per cent right after the bye.

“It’s unlikely we’d play three ruckmen in one team,” Scott said.

“If we choose Rhys, then Zac would be unlucky.

Zac Smith played well against the Swans.Credit:AAP

“But it’s not out of the realms of possibility we play Zac again and keep Rhys on ice for another week.”

Scott said Brownlow medallist Patrick Dangerfield had benefited from missing the game against the Gold Coast after hurting his ankle and knee.

He said the 29-year-old’s willingness to play through injury was unbelievable but his form on the weekend was a reminder of the level he could reach when his body was given the occasional chance to recover if sore.

“He has been carrying some things for quite a period of time and sometimes it is not until you take a week off and recover that little bit better that you realise how sore you were,” Scott said.

“I think we saw that in his performance.

Gary Ablett will also be back after serving his one-match suspension, with Scott saying the return of Ablett’s ball use inside 50 will be a bonus against the Tigers.

The Cats sit two games clear on top of the ladder but there was no chance of complacency setting in as the players and staff were well aware there was more than one club playing at least as well, if not better than Geelong.

Peter Ryan is a sports reporter with The Age covering AFL, horse racing and other sports.

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