Cats duo take aim at AFL draw
CATS coach Chris Scott has declared the AFL draw is set to have a bigger impact than ever before as teams clamour for spots in the top eight.
Scott's Geelong outfit sits seventh on the ladder having just beaten the Swans in Sydney, with more tough assignments to come in the run to September.
And he knows several clubs face stern tests in the run to the end of the year as 18 clubs negotiate a 22-match season.
"We do run a strange competition, where the draw has such a big impact," Scott said.
"I would contend that we see teams drop out of the top four and the top eight regularly, and it's mainly because of the draw.
"Because we handicap the draw. I can't think of a competition in the world … can we think of a football code where we start the season (knowing that)?
"It's akin to an athletics event where you say to Usain Bolt 'sorry mate, you've won it the last couple of times so you start 5m behind'.
Scott said the draw wasn't as much of an issue for a standout side.
"In a perverse way it can advantage the teams that are that much better than the rest," Scott said.
"So Richmond for example, it arguably puts them in a stronger position because they are a little bit better, they beat the teams around them, but if you're in the group of the next eight or nine teams and you've got a great draw, it's a big advantage."
Scott's view was backed by his midfield superstar Patrick Dangerfield, who labelled the current model "farcical".
"It makes no sense," the AFL Players' Association president said.
"Why would you have the number of teams we have, yet play 22 rounds? It's farcical."
GWS co-captain Phil Davis agreed the existing 22-match season was "a strange number to come to", and said he'd happily play more footy if it meant all clubs started on a level playing field.
"I understand it's done for equality. Where's the solution? I'm not sure," Davis said.
"I know I'm a 34-game (per season) fan because I love playing footy but the 17-and-5 (model) seems like a relatively logical approach but it's just about equality. You want all teams to have an equal opportunity (for success)."