Cats in good form for Pies, says Ottens - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Cats in good form for Pies, says Ottens

By Greg Buckle 11/09/2010 06:09:48 AM Comments (0)

Geelong ruckman Brad Ottens says the Cats have gained plenty from having to take the long route to next Friday's preliminary final.

The AFL defending premiers suffered an upset loss to St Kilda in last week's qualifying final and returned to something vaguely in the vicinity of their best form with a 69-point win over Fremantle in Friday night's semi-final at the MCG.

The victory sets up a preliminary final against Collingwood for the third time in four years, with Geelong winning in 2007 (by five points) and 2009 (by 73) on their way to grand final success the following week.

Mick Malthouse's Magpies, of course, will be motivated to tip Geelong out of finals contention after all the pain the Cats have caused Collingwood in recent years.

And while Collingwood will be fresh and firing after their week off, Ottens says the Cats showed enough against Fremantle to suggest they're heading in the right direction.

Geelong bounced out to a seven-goal lead at quarter-time but were outscored in the second quarter and struggled again in the third term before surging well clear late in the game.

"In the second quarter we went around in circle work a little bit," Ottens told reporters on Friday night.

"It was a bit up and down. It was good that we managed to be able to get back to the way we wanted to play, play our way towards the end.

"It's a pretty good win. It's better than last week.

"I don't think it's a huge disadvantage playing every week.

"In the three years previous we have been pretty rusty in the prelim, coming off a week off.

"Playing every week has got its disadvantages and to get through the game tonight without any real sore spots, and to have a good result like that, it's a pretty good preparation."

Ottens says the Cats have that hard edge that comes from playing in winning grand final teams.

"Experience in finals is probably what we've got on our side," said Ottens.

"Having played in three grand finals in a row, we've been there and we've experienced it, which is something they don't have.

"But in saying that, they're the team to beat at the moment. They finished on top of the ladder and they've been the stand-out team so we have to be at our absolute best next week to get over the top of them."

Ottens admitted the Cats were only reached about 85 per cent of their best football against Fremantle.

"We need to take the game on a bit. We need to use the ball better," he said.

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