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Ablett's new number at Geelong revealed

Gary Ablett's new number has been revealed - AFL,Geelong Cats,Gary Ablett,Stewart Crameri,Jake Kelly,Charlie Constable,Lachlan Fogarty,Gryan Miers
Gary Ablett's new number has been revealed

RETURNING Geelong superstar Gary Ablett will wear No.4 at the Cats.

Ablett takes over the jumper from retired triple premiership champion Andrew Mackie.

He wore No.29 in his previous stint at the club but that has been passed on to midfielder Cameron Guthrie.

He wore No.9 in his 110 games at the Suns, but close mate Zac Smith has that number, while the No.5 made famous by Gary Ablett snr is currently held by Nakia Cockatoo.

There had been speculation he could don the No.11 he wore while at the Geelong Falcons in the TAC Cup after that number was vacated by Darcy Lang, who was traded to Carlton. 

Meanwhile, rookie forward Stewart Crameri will wear No.36, Tim Kelly has taken No.11, Lachlan Fogarty will take over Tom Lonergan's No.13, Charlie Constable has No.18 and Gryan Miers will don No.32.

Ablett explained to exclusiveinsight.com he wanted to pay tribute to Mackie, a close mate.

"While many were quick to rightly presume that I’d be pursuing No.11 (the number my father and I both wore during our junior days at the Cats), there are in fact a number of reasons why I chose to don No.4 ahead of my 17th season in the AFL," Ablett said.

"However, the main reason being of course, my friendship with Andrew Mackie. Mack is a really good mate of mine and someone that I have a great deal of respect for.

"I absolutely loved and admired the way he went about his footy throughout his incredible career and I thought it'd be nice to be able to carry that number on for him.

"Of course, I thought it was important for me to approach him first, but before I could even finish asking the question, he stopped me mid-sentence and said that he would love for me to be able to carry it on.

"He spoke to me about how he'd be super stoked to see me run around in the same number that he won three premierships in and what was a significant part of his 15 years at Geelong." 

Andrew Mackie and Gary Ablett with the No.4 jumper. Picture: exclusiveinsight.com

Ablett told reporters at GMHBA Stadium on Friday morning he didn't ask Guthrie for the No.29.

"At the end of his day, that's been his number for seven or eight years now. He's made a name for himself in that number, so when I got to the club, I knew the numbers that were available. It was between No.4 and No.11," Ablett said.

Ablett's family, including his father, ticked off on the decision to wear No.4

"I speak to my dad every day. I spoke to him before I chose the number as well, and he thought the No.4 was a really great fit," Ablett said.

The dual Brownlow medallist is on restricted duties but does not expect that to be the case for long.

"I'm confident that within the next couple of weeks, I'll be back in full training," Ablett said.

 

Gary Ablett models his new number. Picture: AFL Photos

Ablett with new Cats Lachie Fogarty, Charlie Constable, Gryan Miers, Tim Kelly and Stewart Crameri. Picture: AFL Photos