Shepparton News

Stewart could play if Geelong get to grand final: Scott

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Perth: Star Geelong defender Tom Stewart is a chance to play in the grand final if the Cats can vanquish Melbourne in this weekend’s preliminar­y final.

The Cats were too good for a gallant GWS in Friday night’s semi-final, prevailing by 35 points on the back of a five-goal haul from Tom Hawkins.

Midfielder Brandan Parfitt is set to be sidelined and could miss the rest of the season after he injured his hamstring while lunging for a tackle.

But in brighter news for the Cats, All-Australian backman Stewart tested his injured foot at the weekend in the hopes of playing in the premiershi­p decider if Geelong qualify.

Coach Chris Scott said Stewart remained a realistic chance to play again this year.

“We think he is. That’s the feedback we’re getting,” Scott told reporters.

“He’s ahead of schedule, which I find humorous when a guy is walking up stairs and that’s ahead of schedule.

“If he makes really good progress and the medical staff are clear that the risk is very, very low, then we’re open to the possibilit­y.”

Friday night’s 15.13 (103) to 10.8 (68) victory continued a familiar trend for Scott’s side. It is the fifth time since 2013 the Cats have lost their qualifying final but prevailed in a semi-final the following week.

Scott dismissed suggestion­s his side had a point to prove after being comfortabl­y outmatched by Port Adelaide.

“We played better – we knew we needed to,” he said.

“We have been a pretty consistent unit over a long period of time and have great confidence that our best footy is hard to beat. And we were closer to that tonight.

“Our contest work was better which allowed us to defend better. I thought our players ahead of the ball looked much more dangerous and challenged the opposition a lot more.”

 ?? Picture: AAP ?? Fitness concern: Tom Stewart has been sidelined by a foot injury.
Picture: AAP Fitness concern: Tom Stewart has been sidelined by a foot injury.

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