TOM HAWKINS says he is "feeling 100 per cent" and ready to take his place in Saturday's Toyota AFL Grand Final after overcoming illness earlier in the week.
Hawkins skipped a scheduled press conference on Monday and then sat out of training on Tuesday as he awaited the results of a COVID-19 test.
However, after getting the all-clear, the Coleman medallist completed Geelong's main training session and told reporters on Thursday he was ready to take on Richmond.
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"It's been probably taken a little bit out of context, but I suppose it's the sort of year and climate we're in that if anyone finds themselves a little bit under the weather, you take precautionary measures and isolate from the group," Hawkins said.
"It was a bit of a rough start to the week, one I would have rather spent with my teammates, but I'm feeling really good.
"I'm feeling 100 per cent and good to go."
Hawkins said he never contemplated the worst-case scenario – contracting COVID-19.
In fact, the 32-year-old said after not missing a training session all season, the couple of quiet days would freshen him up for Saturday's decider.
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Hawkins was part of the Cats' team that lost comprehensively to the Tigers in round 17, but will have a totally different forward line alongside him on Saturday.
Gary Ablett and Gary Rohan were absent for the 26-point loss, while superstar Patrick Dangerfield has been a recent addition forward.
"I think as a whole we've learned a lot from last time," Hawkins said.
"They're just dangerous players. It's really hard to match up on different avenues to goal.
"To have the experience and knowledge of those three in particular is going to be of great benefit to us as a team.
"It just gives us more avenues."
Hawkins conceded it was a far different build-up to 2011, the last time he played in the final match of the season.
Families of the combatants are in the same 'hub' at Royal Pines resort.
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"My daughter was playing with Bachar's (Houli) kids this morning. It is quite different.
"You start to realise you don't get the opportunity to play in Grand Finals that often.
"I cherish the opportunity and position I'm in and hope we can execute and be on the right side of the ledger on Saturday."