Flexibility is the key to curbing Sydney superstar Lance Franklin, according to Geelong coach Chris Scott.
And that need for versatility plays right into the hands of fit-again Cats tall Lachie Henderson as Scott ponders selection ahead of Friday night’s preliminary final against the Swans
“I think against Sydney that flexibility is going to be important,” Scott said.
“For obvious reasons the focus can be on (Lance Franklin), and Tom Lonergan has traditionally taken him, but having the capacity to have different players who can help out in that area would be an asset.
“We think we’ve got pretty good flexibility in our squad and irrespective of the final 22 we go with we’ve got confidence that we’ve got a few guys who can play at either end of the ground.
“Lachie is certainly one of them.”
Henderson hasn’t played since suffering a knee injury in round 22.
Scott said the 22 players who helped the Cats to a thrilling two-point win over Hawthorn in the qualifying final are in the box seat to keep their spots, but Henderson appears to have a compelling case for inclusion.
Quelling Franklin isn’t Scott’s only headache, of course, with game-breaking midfielder Josh Kennedy another major threat.
“If you could completely stop Kennedy getting the ball that would be a win, but that is unlikely,” Scott conceded.
“We just have to make sure we put enough pressure on him when he does get it and limit the effectiveness of those guys getting it to their outside runners.”
The Swans are limping into the preliminary final, but Scott said he will spend little time trying to figure out if injured trio Jarrad McVeigh, Callum Mills and Gary Rohan will recover in time to play.
Sydney ruck-forward Kurt Tippett has been cleared to return from a fractured jaw that kept him from the Swans’ semi-final win over Adelaide.