With Geelong one of the two teams set to enter the AFL Women’s competition this year, midfielder Renee Garing is confident the club will come together fast despite a short pre-season.
The Cats have put together a squad primarily made up of players from their VFLW team, coupled with signings from the foundation AFLW teams and the top two picks in this year’s draft in Nina Morrison and Sophie Van De Huevel.
Garing said the club has prioritised building a culture over this pre-season.
“We’ve brought in a number of girls that’ve got a lot of experience in Melissa Hickey, Phoebe McWilliams and those girls, the intensity and the standards being set at training have been really high,” Garing told SEN Breakfast.
“As a playing group, getting to know each other on and off the field is really important as we lead into a really short pre-season.
“Getting to know each other and their strengths is vital going into a short season in itself where every game is vital.”
A full-time high school teacher and coordinator by trade, Garing said she’s worked out how to balance work and footy.
“It’s the first week back at school (when the AFLW season starts), but my boss and the school have been great, they’ve been really flexible with things and we’ve already looked at some dates with year seven camp and a few orientation things because I co-ordinate year seven, we’ve got all of that planned out,” she said.
“I’m probably lucky that I’m a morning and a night person so I can run around on both ends and I like to be busy and do some work when I get home at 10pm.
“It takes a lot of balance and you’ve got to prioritise, but it’s been working so far with the VFLW.
“Although it’s been a step up with the AFLW, we were kind of prepared for it.”
Geelong will open the 2019 season against Collingwood at GMHBA Stadium and have been placed in Conference B under the new system.
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