Clark shows plenty of poise in first-up showing for Cats

Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
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New Geelong draftee Jordan Clark clears from defence against West Coast in the JLT Community Series at Leederville Oval.
Camera IconNew Geelong draftee Jordan Clark clears from defence against West Coast in the JLT Community Series at Leederville Oval. Credit: Getty Images

Claremont coach Darren Harris says Jordan Clark’s composure in his first official AFL hit-out with Geelong last Friday emphasised why the highly rated draft pick can have a big impact for his new club in 2019.

Clark, who played colts for Railways, was selected by the Cats with pick 15 last year and overcame glandular fever last year to impress in his first pre-season on an AFL list.

The 18-year-old was thrust into the spotlight on Friday at Leederville Oval, starring across half-back for the Cats in their 34-point loss to West Coast in the JLT Community Series.

He finished with 21 disposals at 71 per cent efficiency, took five marks, had nine rebound 50s and was precise with his attack off half-back.

Watching on from the stands, Harris, who coached Clark in five matches late in last year’s WAFL season, said the young defender showed great poise.

“The thing with Jordan is he is not overawed in the step up to the next level,” Harris said.

“If you look back, he hasn’t played a lot of footy. He plays State footy and wins WA’s best player, then he was put in the WAFL reserves and showed he was too good and then we play him at league level and he was not overawed at all.”

Claremont league coach Darren Harris was impressed by his former player Jordan Clark on Friday.
Camera IconClaremont league coach Darren Harris was impressed by his former player Jordan Clark on Friday. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

Harris said Clark’s performance in the Cats’ back half showed he was ready to make an early season impact, possibly debuting in round 1 against Collingwood at the MCG.

“Jordan took a big mark in the first minute or two,” he said.

“He read the play well, used his legs speed and took the game on. He’s a humble kid that has got real inner confidence and has all the AFL attributes ... Geelong have played two practice games and he’s played in both after having glandular fever, so it shows how highly they rate him.”

The Cats play Essendon in their final JLT Series match this Friday night at GMHBA Stadium.

Clark said he overcame a few nerves to play his natural game.

“There were some nerves as I ran out,” Clark said. “(Run and carry) is something that comes naturally and is one of my strengths.”

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