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Geelongs first game this season
From the Geelong website, [quote]Bendigo Bank Cats vs Tasmania Saturday 9th April, 2.00pm, North Hobart Oval The team will train at 2.30pm on Friday 8th of April at North Hobart Oval. Banking on a big 2005 The Bendigo Bank Cats start season 2005 under new coach Leigh Tudor full of optimism following an unexpected ninth place finish last season. A former coach of the Western Jets TAC Cup side and AFL player with North Melbourne and Geelong in the ‘90’s, Tudor returns to the club this year confident of guiding his side straight back in to the finals. “Obviously the aim is play finals. A part of developing (young players) is that you’ve actually got to win. I think it’s a realistic aim,” Tudor said. Tudor is looking for an improvement from some of the second year players, who can provide leadership support to reigning best and fairest James Byrne, and help guide the clubs new recruits. “I think just having another pre-season under their belt, the (Cameron) Thurley’s and the (Matthew) Spencer’s and those sorts of guys, they’re all going to improve from that. There has been a really big focus (in practise matches) on leadership across the ground,” Tudor said. A quirk in the fixture sees the Cats only play at home once in their opening eight matches, followed by a run of eight Skilled Stadium games in the last ten and Tudor hopes that some away victories in the early going can set the side up for the run home. “We just want to win as many (games) as we can in the first half of the year… put a few on the board early and it will be good to play the last few at home,” Tudor said. The Cats will look to new draft picks and rookies such as Brent Prismal, Nathan Ablett, Jarrod Garth, Tim Sheringham and Nick Batchelor to develop their games and prove at VFL level during the season that they can be long term players for the club. Returning VFL list players such as Adam Cook, Danny Byrne and Jackson Bolton will also be keen to play a big role, supporting the young recruits and providing an example of the style of play Tudor wants to instil in his young charges. “As long as they communicate well and consistently help each other out, that’s all we can ask for,” Tudor said.[/quote]