Dangerfield ready for AFL practice matches

·2-min read

Geelong superstar Patrick Dangerfield has eased fears over a lingering groin injury, declaring himself "pain-free" and a chance to play in next week's AFL preseason hit-out against Collingwood.

The 30-year-old battled the fitness complaint late last season and has been on a modified training program over summer.

He has no concerns about his availability for the Cats' round-one meeting with Adelaide, but conceded it will take him some time to fire on all cylinders.

"It's all pretty positive at the moment," Dangerfield said after Thursday's training session.

"We had a good hit-out today and it was sort of my first match sim, albeit not a huge amount, but a little bit, which is good.

"It always takes a little bit longer (to reach peak fitness).

"That being said, games makes it easier and the continuity of playing is always an adjustment anyway.

"It's probably not ideally where I'd like to be but the most important thing is I'm moving around fairly free and pain-free, which is good."

Dangerfield is hopeful of taking part in the modified match practice against Collingwood on Friday week and an official preseason match against Essendon.

However, he won't be worried if medical staff decide to hold him back a little longer.

"Players are pretty fine-tuned now," Dangerfield said.

"I don't think I need too much in terms of games before the actual season starts, and it doesn't feel like it was all that long ago that the season finished.

"It's horses for courses, but at the moment everything's pretty promising."

Dangerfield has been impressed by experienced recruits Jeremy Cameron, Isaac Smith and Shaun Higgins during preseason and is eager to build chemistry with the trio.

"That's the challenge and it's still going to be a work in progress even once the season does start," Dangerfield said.

"As we're all aware, COVID has thrown its little challenges at us throughout this preseason and who knows what the future holds.

"So that's the challenge for us and the more work we put in on the track, the better it feels and the better we're all starting to gel."