NAB Cup, Round 1: CAT-astrophe as Cats made to look human

How to overreact by Tabloid “Journalist” Caroline Walls-Sheahan (aka Alex Wadelton)

Geelong is staring into the abyss created by the selfish decision of ex-captain Tom Harley to establish a happy life with his new wife in Sydney. The vacuum left by being forced into retirement by his wife was obvious to all and sundry in Sunday night’s pitiful capitulation to the rising league power of North Melbourne. This combined with Mathew Stokes and his Pablo Escobar like drug operation is clearly threatening to derail Geelong’s season before it’s even started.

The match began brightly for Geelong with Hawkins and Johnson helping establish an early lead for Geelong. But from there, it was a sharp decline into the sort of form that almost saw Mark Thompson (rightly) sacked five rounds into the 2007 season.

My sources tell me there are already rumblings of discontent on the Geelong board about the performance of Thompson. The credit built from winning two premierships in three years and being declared one of the best teams of all time, has almost run out.  There is a feeling that the game has passed him by. These very reliable whispers from the inner sanctum of the Cattery indicate that the Geelong faithful believe you really are only as good as your last performance. And that last performance was as woeful as Luke Hodge’s new haircut.

New captain Cameron Ling’s unfocussed and directionless performance has been attributed, sources say, to his lack of focus and direction. This correspondent was shocked and appalled to see him competing in the televised Rexona “Australia’s Greatest Athlete” program in Queensland just hours before the first bounce. Some wonder how he managed to even get to the ground on time, and what sort of message this sent to the rest of the team.

This unprofessional preparation seemed endemic in the Cats limp first half performance.

Gary Ablett was clearly playing like a man with his mind on the Gold Coast, his body sun baking on the beach and his lips sipping a Pina Colada whilst being fanned by a gaggle of scantily clad Meter Maids and Warwick Capper.

Steve Johnson was lurching around looking like he’d downed a couple of bottles of sunscreen after backing up from a session of frothies with Billy Brownless.

Tom Hawkins is wasting whatever talent he may or may not have with insipid performances. Since kicking the crunch goal early in the last quarter of last year’s Grand Final and being Geelong’s best forward throughout the finals, he has returned a meager total of two goals. This is not good enough for someone of his vast experience.

The old guard struggled mightily. Brad Ottens, Paul Chapman, Darren Milburn and Matthew Scarlett didn’t even register a single possession between them, another indicator that they are on the slippery slope towards retirement as the Cats fall ever downwards into mediocrity and the lame hope of tanking for draft picks.

Sure, they didn’t play, but that’s beside the point.

Ken Hinkley’s decision to move to the Gold Coast as assistant coach now makes more sense than ever. Those close to Hinkley have indicated his dissatisfaction with the sheer arrogance of naming four players with the first name of Tom (Allwright, Hawkins, Gillies and Lonergan). This was done with the intent to claim a world record for the most amount of TomCat’s in one team, in a feeble attempt to attract Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes as number one ticket holders. This self-absorbed tactic was the clincher in sending him north to greener pastures.

If Geelong can’t win next week in the blockbuster NAB Challenge against Richmond in Yea there could far-reaching repercussions for this once great team.

Or they’ll just continue training in preparation for the real season.


  1. Yes a bit too much can be read into the NAB Cup by the sports gurus, but I suppose they’ve got nothing else to write about at the minute.

    The only issue I have with the Cats at the moment is that our old brigade is still being listed in the best players. We need to be getting the younger blokes up and about, not so much for this season but for the next 2 – 5 seasons.

  2. It’s true that it is only a practice game, but it’s fair to say that there’s not a lot of new brilliance trying to push it’s way into the top 22 or so.

    Sadly, Geelong will be made mediocre by football socialism and having to continually draft average players – whilst losing potential replacements like Prismall and Mumford as they look for a team where they can get a guaranteed game.

    Much as I would like to see a thousand years of domination, it aint going to happen. This is probably the last year Geelong will be anywhere near the top part of the competition. With only a few exceptions history shows that four years is generally the limit.

    Though I was recently having a conversation with Mick Malthouse about confuscian principles and he regaled me with his fast times with Chairman Mao. Mick asked Chairmen Mao what he thought of the French Revolution. Chairman Mao replied “too early to tell…”

    I think there’s something there for Geelong to ponder.

  3. Clever article.

  4. This is hilarious! I laughed so much my tummy ached.

    It is ridiculous how much some journos have read into the first round of NAB Cup. Apart from the fact that stars are being rested, Geelong always seems to start the year groggily – they blokes from Sleep Hollow are just waking up, after all. Most teams start a little rusty, only Hawthorn and the Kangas have really bolted, in my mind.

    The delayed start to preseason training may see us struggle a bit in the beginning, but we’ll be reaping the rewards when the other teams succumb to fatigue at the other end of the season. We’ve well and truly been planning ahead.

    Nice reference to Johnno and the sunscreen incident from around ’05/’06. It amazes me that man can function, let alone deserve the title of “genius” on the footy field – because he’s anything but off it.

  5. Don’t know how serious to take the article. On one hand it could be interpreted as tongue in cheek, or could it be that you are a tad paranoid. Geelong are far from finished in my opinion. They will be there when the whips are cracking and finish top 4 along with St Kilda, Hawthorn & the Dogs.

  6. It’s tongue-in-cheek: “How to overreact by Tabloid “Journalist” Caroline Walls-Sheahan”

    It’s brilliantly done. You should send it in to the Herald Sun – my bet is they’d view it as a serious piece of journalistic work and publish it ;-p

  7. Good, I am glad the Cats are the first team written off this year.

    It is very nervous from week to week when you are a chance.

    Now that we are gone I can have stress free weeks and leisurely weekends digging the vegie garden watching the others fight it out from the fire side.

    Bring on ‘The Winter of Discontent’.

    I feel relaxed already. Aahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.


  8. Peter Schumacher says

    Great satire, loved it!

  9. Alex Wadelton says

    Thanks for the feedback everyone.

    I too am glad that Geelong are out of premiership calculations so i can content myself to a nice peaceful Richmond or Melbourne like existence. No hope of success, means no chance of being let down. Huzzah.

    I still have some faith in the kiddlywinks at the Cattery- Selwood, Hawkins, Varcoe, Hogan, Gillies, Harry Taylor… that’s a nice list of youngsters moving forward. Still, we need to grab a flag this year as it may be the last chance of Scarlo and Ottens and Mooney being up and about.

    Bring on Yea, oh yeah!

  10. Stephen Cooke says

    Great piece. I read it in between watching the 07 and 09 grand final dvds, which made a very pleasant afternoon it must be said.

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