Cats have faith in recruit Kelly

24 December 2017 23:09:19 GMTPlus11
Gary Ablett

Tim Kelly looms as an important figure for Geelong next season, following Steven Motlop's move to Port Adelaide.

The Cats are hoping the mature-age draftee will step in as an important link man between midfield and forwards.

He's mature in ways outside of footy which is really going to help him.

Chris Scott

Coach Chris Scott has brought in Gary Ablett to bolster the onball unit, but 23-year-old Kelly is also set to be a player who can replace the run and carry the club lost when Motlop departed after 135 appearances for Geelong.

The West Australian performed strongly at this year's AFL Draft Combine to attract the attention of the Cats.

Scott's delighted to have recruited him, saying: "He's mature in ways outside of footy which is really going to help him. The most important thing is that he looks like he can play."

Kelly finished second in the WAFL's Sandover Medal despite heavy attention from opposition clubs and Scott feels he's ready to step up to the AFL, having previously failed to be drafted for six consecutive years.

He'll be looking to take on a role that Motlop excelled in - he ranked second in the AFL for bounces (64) last season and averaged 321.9 metres gained.

Scott is looking forward to seeing what the new recruit can bring to the team.

"We think he might be able to help us (with our run and carry)," said the coach. "It didn't work in that order (losing Motlop and drafting Kelly), it was just us thinking he was the best player and it also happens that he's ready to play."

Geelong are 12/1 to win the 2018 Grand Final.

The Cats are 1/100 to finish in the top eight.

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