K rock Football

Coach coy on Hawkins strike

GEELONG coach Chris Scott was unwilling to discuss the possible fallout from Tom Hawkins’ swinging arm after it put a sour note on the Cats’ semi-final win over West Coast on Friday night.

Hawkins, who kicked four goals in the 20-point victory, caught Will Schofield high in an off-the-ball clash during the third quarter in an incident that was by far the biggest talking point of the night.

The action left the Eagles defender momentarily dazed and footage will be scrutinised by the Match Review Officer on Saturday.

A striking charge could rule the Geelong spearhead out of the preliminary final against Richmond in a week’s time.

“In part, because I didn’t want to talk about it tonight, I haven’t looked at it,” Scott said.

“I’ve just got nothing to add.”

CATS: DANGER LAUDS SKIPPER

Tall forwards Wylie Buzza and Darcy Fort shape as possible replacements for Hawkins after spending most of the season at VFL level.

Geelong held a 32-point advantage over West Coast midway through the second term but coughed it up as the 2018 premiers fought back into the contest and led at three-quarter time.

Scott was full of praise for his side after it steadied and kicked four unanswered goals in the final term to win, 13.10 (88) to 10.8 (68).

“We were a fair way down (against Collingwood) in a low-scoring game and lost by 10 points,” Scott said.

“Our players don’t give up. If one wants to go back and look at the performance of our team, and it’s been a different team over the years, I can’t think of many occasions where you’d look at them and say they turned their toes up.

“It’s a great quality to have in a group of players and it’s not just the leaders that lead the way anymore.

“We’ve got younger players who haven’t played much footy, much less finals, who were just outstanding tonight.

“I think that resilience that you speak of is a bit deeper than, ‘they challenged us and we fought back’.”

Scott highlighted young players Jack Henry, Jed Bews, Gryan Miers and Tom Atkins as important contributors, and even likened Jake Kolodjashnij to Hawthorn legend Peter Knights at one point.

Captain Joel Selwood and experienced midfielder Cam Guthrie were strong performers throughout the night, as was Patrick Dangerfield in the final term.

Scott was hopeful Gary Rohan (knee) would be fit to return against Richmond.

Twitter: @shayne_hope