All eyes are on Geelong’s Jeremy Cameron ahead of the Cats’ monster preliminary final with Brisbane after the star AFL forward was on light duties at training on Monday following a missed session on Friday.
Cameron was absent from training last week due to a stomach virus and was keen to hose down any injury fears on Monday.
WATCH IN THE VIDEO ABOVE: Mitch Cleary’s trade update on Dunkley, Tom Mitchell and more
Analysis, local footy and the biggest moments, Seven and 7plus are the home of footy shows for every fan. Stream them all for free on 7plus >>
The All-Australian forward said he was simply having a lighter session after training on Sunday.
In round 22, Cameron quietly left the field during the last quarter, complaining of hamstring tightness in his right leg. He spent the final 15 minutes of that game on the bench after an electrifying performance.
But he recovered to play a key role in Geelong’s qualifying-final win over Collingwood and is adamant he will take centre stage on Friday night at the MCG.
He clarified the extent of that round 22 injury on Monday, saying it was at the minor end and he was feeling “fresh”..
Tom Hawkins also trained away from the main group after sitting out the last 15-20 minutes of the Friday session.
Sam Menegola was on light duties as well with 7NEWS reporter Mitch Cleary revealing the big-bodied mid appeared to tweak his ankle on Friday. And Jake Kolodjashnij, who suffered concussion during the final against the Pies, was another spared from the main session.
“It’s (the hamstring) going really well,” Cameron told reporters on Monday.
“It’s all planned. It’s been really planned all year really well, I thought, except for the end of the Gold Coast game, but even then we knew it was really minor.
“So the whole year has been planned out well, and we’ll continue to do that until we’re finished.
“I’ve felt really good this year.”
Cameron’s first season at Geelong in 2021 was plagued by hamstring injuries but he was injury-free this year until suffering a “frustrating” strain against the Suns in round 22.
He missed just one game and was able to recover over the pre-finals bye.
“I did look straight forward to finals and (was) thinking about that straight away, sitting on the bench,” he said.
“But the whole time I knew it was pretty minor. It felt a lot different, it didn’t even really feel like a hamstring, it was a bit more tightness.
“But it’s always a bit scary when you’ve had a little bit of history there in the past.
“So it was a relief when I got the scan back two days later and it was really minor so then I could just get to work over the bye and get back.”
Cameron has booted 62 goals this year working alongside Hawkins but said it was hard to tell whether his 2022 had been better than his 76-goal season at GWS in 2019.
As he prepared for another big final in front of a monster crowd at the MCG, Cameron believed Geelong’s current situation vindicated his move from GWS at the end of 2020.
“You want to play in the finals and win it all,” he said.
“At the end of the day, that’s what you’re here to do and I’m excited by that.”
– with AAP