Hawkins unfazed by form as Cats games record looms

Anna Harrington |

Tom Hawkins will equal Geelong’s games record against Port and aim for his first goal in a month.
Tom Hawkins will equal Geelong’s games record against Port and aim for his first goal in a month.

On the verge of equalling Geelong’s AFL games record, Tom Hawkins has no doubts he can work his way through his current form slump.

Hawkins, 35, will draw level with great mate Joel Selwood on 355 games when the Cats host Port Adelaide at GMHBA Stadium on Friday night.

But the milestone comes as Hawkins has gone goalless for four weeks for the first time in his career.

“Look, I’m well aware that I’m not in great touch at the moment,” he said.

“But I feel like I’m still playing quite a significant role within the team.

“Our motto as a list and 23 that play each week and specifically as a forward line is that we’ve got so many avenues towards goal, which hasn’t probably always been the case for me in my time in Geelong.

“So each week’s gonna look slightly different in terms of in terms of pure goalscoring.

“Yes, I’d like to be a bit more influential in the games, but I’ve touched on some periods in my career that you work through and this is just one that’s a small speed hump.

“But I’ll manage my way through it and no doubt be fine.”

Jeremy Cameron (19 goals), Ollie Henry (18), Tyson Stengle (14) and Brad Close (10) have all hit the scoreboard amid Geelong’s 7-1 start.

Hawkins (nine goals) insisted he wouldn’t have additional motivation against the Power.

“I’ve always thought that I add more than just my ability to kick goals,” he added.

“I just need to have a little bit more influence in the game.”

Hawkins wasn’t concerned about his football mortality.

“Life’s far too busy for me to worry too much about that,” he said.

“… it’s just about how can I get back to being able to help the team as quickly as I can?”

Hawkins was joined by Selwood, Jimmy Bartel (305 AFL games) and Ian Nankervis (325) to celebrate the milestone.

Ian Nankervis, Jimmy Bartel, Joel Selwood and Tom Hawkins.
Tom Hawkins surrounded by fellow Cats legends Ian Nankervis, Jimmy Bartel and Joel Selwood. (Julian Smith/AAP PHOTOS)

“It certainly doesn’t sit all that comfortably with me just at the moment,” he said.

“It’s a bit unique in the fact that I’m passing one of my best friends in life, a player that I’ve spent a lot of time in my football journey with.

“I’m sure that this is going to be something when I will finish and look back on my career, I’m certainly going to be proud of the fact that I’ve been able to be so durable.

“But for me, this is about me and those that have helped me along the way.”

Selwood believed Hawkins’ form slump would just be a “small hiccup”.

But he couldn’t believe the big forward was on the verge of leapfrogging him.

“It still doesn’t make sense. It defies all science,” Selwood said.

“(He was) 110 kilos at the time when he came in, massive.

“He’s been a really good teammate to play with and play alongside. As long as he continues that on, he can play for as long as he wants.”