Geelong get another local in Henderson

Geelong by name and more Geelong by nature.

As the Cats look to bounce back in 2016 after missing the AFL finals for the first time in nine years, they will do so with a new-look lineup boasting more of a local flavour.

The Cats continued their active start to the AFL trade period on Wednesday, snaring key-position player Lachie Henderson from Carlton in exchange for their first pick in the 2016 national draft.

Henderson began his AFL career in Brisbane, but he hails from the country town of Birregurra, 60km south-west of Geelong, and played in the TAC Cup Under 18s with the Geelong Falcons.

Henderson came through the highly-rated Falcons program at the same time as Patrick Dangerfield, who joined the Cats to considerable fanfare on Monday after eight impressive years with Adelaide.

Dangerfield said the driving force behind seeking a trade to Geelong was to be closer to his family, who still live in the surf coast hamlet of Moggs Creek.

Henderson was also thrilled to be returning home after telling Carlton he wanted to be traded to the Cats, a stance that led to the Blues refusing to select him for the final three rounds of the home and away season.

“I’m excited to join the club and return to Geelong, which is an area I know well,” said Henderson, who is currently holidaying in New York.

“I have always respected the way the Cats go about things.

“It will be great to line up with them and play whatever role they need me to play.”

Geelong coach Chris Scott said Henderson’s many assets included versatility, skill and leadership.

“He will give us more options in how we set up and is another quality player that has wanted to join our club,” Scott said in a statement.

“To add Lachie to the players we have already secured during the trade period is really exciting for everyone associated with the club.”

Among the other locally-raised players on Geelong’s current list are 2007 Brownlow medallist Jimmy Bartel, highly-rated youngster Darcy Lang and Jed Bews, the son of former Cats star Andrew Bews.

The Geelong teams which won three flags in the golden era of 2007-11 included several local heroes including Gary Ablett, Cameron Ling, Matthew Scarlett and Bartel.

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