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Varcoe ready for VFL return

Adam McNicol   July 2, 2013 2:07 PM

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Travis Varcoe hasn't played for the Cats since round three this season

We'd like to have him back (in our AFL team) this week, but we'll err on the side of caution with Trav
GEELONG speedster Travis Varcoe is set to make his comeback from a shoulder injury in the VFL this weekend.

Varcoe has not played since undergoing surgery after dislocating his left shoulder against Carlton in round three.

The 25-year-old trained without a pink cap on Tuesday morning, which means he has been cleared to participate in full contact drills.

"Medically, he's been ticked off," Cats physio Mike Snelling told CatsTV. "The surgeon is happy, we're happy. He's done some contact.

"He's got to get through full training on Thursday, and then we expect him to be available, probably in the VFL, just to give him conditioning before returning to the AFL."

Geelong coach Chris Scott has not guaranteed that Varcoe will return to competitive action this week.

"He's around about the mark," he said. "It's got to the stage now where the 12 weeks is almost up, and we've just got to make decisions about the best way to bring him back into the AFL program, whether that's a little bit of match fitness at VFL level or another week or two of solid training.

"It's exciting to have him back. We'd like to have him back (in our AFL team) this week, and we would've liked to have him back a month ago, but we'll err on the side of caution with Trav."

Defender Jared Rivers, who hasn't played since suffering a knee injury against the Western Bulldogs in round five, also trained strongly on Tuesday.

He is certain to line up in the VFL this weekend.

"’Rivs’ has done some really great work on the track for a couple of weeks now and he's had no problems with his knee, so we expect him to come back and get a little bit of match fitness," Snelling said.

But it's not all good news at the Cattery.

First-year defender Jackson Thurlow will be sidelined for a couple of weeks after suffering a broken cheekbone while playing in the VFL on Sunday.

"He has a little depressed fracture, so it's not all the way through the bone," Snelling said.

"In a very interesting little technique; (the surgeon) put a little incision in his head and put a little tool down to basically pop that fracture back in place.

"It was a 15-minute procedure and he's probably got two weeks before he'll be back playing."

Thurlow was at the club on Tuesday watching his teammates train.

Adam McNicol is a reporter for AFL Media. Follow him on Twitter @AFL_AdamMcNicol