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Big Cat set to ramp up training after post-season surgery

Esava Ratugolea played eight games for the Cats before injury cruelled his debut season - AFL,Geelong Cats,Esava Ratugolea
Esava Ratugolea played eight games for the Cats before injury cruelled his debut season

GEELONG power forward Esava Ratugolea will resume running for the first time on Tuesday after post-season surgery in a bid to push his case for round one selection.

The 20-year-old watched on as his first-to-fourth-year teammates returned for a two-hour session at Deakin University involving running and match simulation drills.

Still recovering from a September clean-up to have screws removed from initial surgery following his broken ankle in round 10, Ratugolea will soon begin to ramp up his training.

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"The ankle's going really well and I'll run today for the first time on the Alter-G (weight-bearing treadmill) in about five weeks," he said on Tuesday.

"I'll do about a 10-minute session, get the ankle moving and hopefully I'll be back on the track sometime next week.

"(I've been) doing a lot of cross training, bike sessions in the heat room and rope sessions.

"I feel like I could've run last week or the week before but we're just taking our time and making sure it's feeling 100 per cent.

"Now it's just about building my confidence up and I've got a lot of time before round one to do that."

 

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Fellow key forward Wylie Buzza was kept to light duties after surgery on his Lisfranc, while Nakia Cockatoo's recovery from knee surgery restricted him to running laps.

Bulked-up third-year ruckman Ryan Abbott was left to laps after hamstring tendinitis alongside Sam Simpson and Jed Bews (off-season shoulder surgery).

Mature-age pre-draft selection Nathan Kreuger also joined Lachie Fogarty (adductor soreness) for stationary handballs before sitting out much of the session.

Rookie revelation Jack Henry was an early standout after his impressive 2018 campaign along with Brandan Parfitt, Jamaine Jones, Charlie Constable and Zach Guthrie.

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Sydney recruit Gary Rohan was spotted watching on alongside All Australian Tom Stewart, who has been granted a fortnight's extra leave alongside Sam Menegola and Tim Kelly, despite only preparing for his third year at the club.