LOTS to like, better for the run. 

Carlton midfield coach Tim Clarke was impressed with what he saw from the Blues in their match simulation with the Cats, noting the team's ability to play out in hot conditions will be vital when taking on Brisbane at the Gabba in Opening Round. 

With the temperature hitting a high of 38 in extremely blustery conditions, it was a battle for the Blues and the Cats alike, but Clarke was grateful for the opportunity to play in a tough climate against a tough opponent. 

“It’s great to get a game against a quality opposition in Geelong,” Clarke said. 

“For us, getting conditions like today is terrific because our Round 0 clash is against Brisbane [at the Gabba], so the opportunity for us to play in the heat - to be able to absorb what those conditions throw at you - is really good for our group.”


In terms of standouts for Clarke throughout the day, he highlighted a few new faces who were wearing the Navy Blue for the first time.

Elijah Hollands and Orazio Fantasia were positives for Clarke, not only throughout the match, but during pre-season as a whole since their arrival at the Club. 

“For us it was great to see some of the new guys put on the Navy Blue jumper for the first time: Elijah Hollands came in and played a role, Fantasia came in and played a role,” he said. 

“Both ‘Raz’ and ‘Lij’ have had terrific pre-seasons. They’ve given themselves every opportunity to play early in the season. 

“They provide really good run and acceleration with our ball movement, and they also provide good leadership. They’ve been in the system for a few years and they’ve made our group better.”


Up forward, Clarke noted the likes of youngster Ashton Moir and Harry McKay as the ones who caught his eye in the front half. 

Moir and McKay both slotted two goals each, with Clarke saying that both have been putting in diligent and dedicated goalkicking work behind the scenes. 

“Young Ashton was there up forward, and kicked a couple of goals which is good to see for both us as a Club and the supporters,” he said. 

“Harry is confident in his process and so are we – he does a power of work on it both physically on the ground but also a lot of work on what the process looks like and his approach to the kick. 

“He had an impact in multiple roles today, it was good to see.”