SO often those in the footy media are made to eat their words.
Rightly so. When people are paid to have an opinion on a game which is undoubtably Australia's national sport, you'll be pulled up when it's wrong.
When Geelong booked a spot in the AFL grand final this past weekend, it was a case of relief.
I wrote a piece back in June suggesting the amended AFL format - shorter quarters and a shorter season - would put less strain on the Cats' ageing list and therefore prolong their premiership window.
So far, that prediction has rung true. But really, I don't think it'd have taken a brain surgeon to see Geelong was well-placed leading into 2020.
Perhaps it has been a case of amended rules falling in its favour. Perhaps it's been a case of the Cats simply being a strong side.
Analysing it, Tom Hawkins' Coleman Medal-winning season cannot be understated. He turns 33 next July and has had a mammoth impact.
Veterans like Paddy Dangerfield, Harry Taylor and Gary Ablett have been ever-reliable too but it's perhaps the unsung heroes - the Mark Blicavs, the Cam Guthries and the Sam Menegolas - who are to thank for the Cats' rise.
There's an old saying in footy that good sides are those with the best bottom-five players in their best 22. There's grounds to apply that to Geelong's scenario.
But funnily enough, the overall theme among the aforementioned players is that none are really considered part of Geelong's older contingent.
The season might have suited the Cats but it's important to remember they've been on the road for four months this season. It's an admirable effort, from both Geelong and premiership rival Richmond.
So it's not fair to suggest they are where they are based on fortune falling in their favour.
Let's see how it pans out. For now, it's not quite possible to take credit for that June prediction piece.
But if they win come Saturday, it'll definitely (please note the jestful tone) be one we can take some praise from. I hate to say I told you so, but...
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