K rock Football

Rabbott ready to go

Ryan Abbott in action in Geelong’s VFL practice match against Werribee on Friday night. (krockfootball.com.au Image/Marcel Berens)

GEELONG ruckman Ryan Abbott has declared he’s ready for a Round 1 AFL call-up after an injury-interrupted pre-season.

Abbott has impressed in the Cats’ two VFL practice matches after hamstring issues curtailed his pre-Christmas training.

“But since January it’s been a gradual progression; I’ve missed one session since the start of the New Year,” he said after playing three quarters in Friday night’s win over Werribee.

“So it’s been a really good progression, and (I’ll) just keep building on it.

“I’ve played two practice matches so far and felt really good and pulled up really well from.

“So, I feel like I’m in a pretty good place.”

Abbott, who was drafted as a mature-age selection in 2016, played three games in late 2018 – including the elimination final loss to Melbourne – after Rhys Stanley encountered calf problems.

Stanley, who played the best football of his career before the injury, appears to be Geelong’s preferred option as No.1 ruckman.

He will line-up against Collingwood on Friday night, with Abbott unsure whether the Cats are keen to use him or draftee Darcy Fort as a back-up against Brodie Grundy.

“I feel I’m ready if that is the case and they go with two,” he said.

“But, there are a few different setups they’ve experimented with over the pre-season.

“At times, we’ve just seen Rhys, (with) a pinch-hitting ruckman like Esava at times, which is sort of similar to what they did last year.

“I’m not 100 per cent sure what they’ll go with, but I’m ready to play that second ruck role or even a pinch-hitting role up forward, hopefully.”

Twitter: @tom_king79

Click below to listen to the full interview with Ryan Abbott