Jordan Murdoch chat
Geelong youngster hoping to impress in the NAB Cup
Jordan Murdoch wants to cement a spot in the Cats lineup in 2013
GEELONG youngster Jordan Murdoch is confident that he can take the next step this year and cement a place in the Cats' line-up.
The 20-year-old South Australian enjoyed a great debut season in 2012, playing eight AFL games and kicking four goals.
Having bulked up over the summer, the speedy midfielder, who has been compared to former Geelong star Peter Riccardi, is working hard to ensure he improves further in 2013.
"I'd love to try and push for a spot in the team every week," Murdoch told AFL.com.au.
"But in the end, the best thing I can do in my second year is improve and just go for broke and try to push the senior fellas."
Taken by Geelong with pick 48 in the 2011 NAB AFL Draft, Murdoch was eased into the Cats' program last pre-season, but he's had to step up his workload this time around.
"It's a pretty big jump from first- to second-year," he said. "We're doing a lot more drills and not getting pulled out as much as last year."
Murdoch was among the big group of Geelong players that took part in a pre-Christmas camp at Falls Creek in the Victorian high country.
"It was definitely the hardest thing I've ever done," he said. "The hike and the bike ride were really, really tough.
"But I guess it gives you a good measuring pole as to how far you can push yourself. It's definitely going to help in the future."
The camp concluded with a tortuous alpine bike ride from Mount Beauty to Falls Creek.
"I think it's the first time I've ever felt my energy stores being as low as they can go," Murdoch admitted.
"I was so thankful when I crossed that finish line at the top. I just wanted to lie down and die for a bit."
Murdoch was among Geelong's best players during its short competitive hit-out against North Melbourne at Simonds Stadium last Friday.
And with the NAB Cup only a month away, he feels mentally and physically ready to throw himself into the fray.
"It spins you out a little that it's not far away," he said. "But we're getting a lot of work into us now and we should be pretty good come round one of the NAB Cup."
Adam McNicol covers Geelong news for AFL.com.au. Follow him on Twitter at @AFL_AdamMcNicol