'Silly' Mooney nearly cost us: Thompson - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

'Silly' Mooney nearly cost us: Thompson

By Sam Lienert 23/05/2009 03:30:49 PM Comments (0)

Geelong coach Mark Thompson says suspended key forward Cameron Mooney should be as relieved as anyone the Cats survived their close shave against the Western Bulldogs.

Thompson said Mooney's "silly" act against North Melbourne last round which resulted in a one-game ban would have been magnified in importance had Bulldogs skipper Brad Johnson nailed his post-siren shot at goal.

Instead, Johnson missed and the Cats won 17.14 (116) to 17.12 (114) to remain unbeaten.

"I would have done something really brave if we had lost the game, maybe I should do it anyway, I should have a go at Cameron Mooney because we did miss him enormously," Thompson said.

"To go out for a silly thing like that, that could have cost the club.

"It's lucky it wasn't a knockout final or anything, but if it was it would be disastrous because he's so important to us."

Young key forward Tom Hawkins failed to fire in Mooney's absence, managing just seven touches and no goals.

Mooney's replacement Ryan Gamble impressed until he fell on his head after marking late in the second quarter and had to be taken to hospital with concussion.

The bulk of the scoring was left to classy half-forward Steve Johnson, who snared five goals, forward pocket Mathew Stokes, who kicked four, and Paul Chapman, who booted three before badly dislocating a finger late in the game.

Thompson said it was great for the Cats' players and coaches to have a game in which every act mattered, and that experience was worth more than the outcome.

"In the end I didn't care whether we won or lost," he said.

"It's nice to win I suppose and nice that (Johnson) missed, but gee it would have been a great thing for the Bulldogs for them to win.

"To us, we know that we didn't play our best footy and they had a real good chance, they had more of a chance to win it than us."

Personally, Thompson also relished the rare tense finish.

"I went crazy there a few times, I started swearing again, I haven't sworn for years," he said.

"It just exposes you to the pressure that you probably need to be exposed to.

"I don't think you need to do it every week because it's a pretty difficult job, but every now and then it's great."

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