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From broken Cat to purring Lion: Brisbane unlocks Linc

Former Cat Lincoln McCarthy is hoping he can play plenty of footy for his new club - AFL,Brisbane Lions,Lincoln McCarthy
Former Cat Lincoln McCarthy is hoping he can play plenty of footy for his new club

HIS BEST mate Lachie Neale stole the headlines in Sunday's JLT Series win over Hawthorn, but this Brisbane recruit also had a huge impact in his first game for his new club.

After battling injury for much of his seven seasons at Geelong, Lincoln McCarthy has had an uninterrupted pre-season and the benefits were on show against the Hawks.

There's no major tricks to be able to play every week, you've got to put in a pre-season and that's what we were able to do - Lincoln McCarthy

The numbers alone were impressive - 17 disposals, two goals and eight tackles – but it was his chase-from-behind pressure, ability to contest in the air and grunt work around the contest that really caught the eye.

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Following his off-season trade, 25-year-old McCarthy said Brisbane's medical team had been cautious, allowing him to take part in almost every session. 

His catalogue of problems in Cats colours included injuries to his groin, hip, back, foot and quad.

Lincoln McCarthy runs down Hawk rookie Tim Mohr in JLT1. Picture: Getty Images

"I rocked up and I wasn't injured and that's a start," McCarthy said.

"The boys knew my history and they've been really supportive and guided me really well through the training load and through the training program.

"There's no major tricks to be able to play every week, you've got to put in a pre-season and that's what we were able to do.

"It's nice to be able to have a bit of work in the legs even though I was cramping last quarter but that's pretty normal.

"I've only finished 80 per cent of one pre-season.

 "It's exciting for me that I've got a bit of work behind me and hopefully that means there's more footy to come."

McCarthy didn't know many people when he moved to Brisbane with partner Tayla, but in Neale, he had an instant flatmate.

The trio lived together until early in the new year when Neale's wife Julie joined him in Brisbane.

On the field, McCarthy is now part of an exciting forward line that also includes Charlie Cameron, Cam Rayner and Eric Hipwood.

"I feel like we've got a group of lads that have all got something different to bring," he said.

"Those blokes have all got their own strengths, and a few of them. It brings a different look to the forward line, I guess, and opposition."