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Can Cats finally put clamps on Charlie Cameron?

But Cameron dominated again, kicking four goals in the second half and laying an important tackle late to drag the Lions over the line by a point. He left the ground with his second successive bag of five goals against the Cats.

On Thursday night in the unfamiliar surroundings of the Sydney Cricket Ground – where Cameron has kicked just two goals in two appearances – Geelong will once again face their nemesis.

Cats coach Chris Scott, after downplaying Cameron’s influence at the Gabba last year, this week described the 26-year-old as the premier small forward in the competition as he happily revisited his post-match statement from 2019.

“I made some comments when we played them last which was towards the end of last year that I didn’t think he was unstoppable, that’s just a statement of fact,” Scott said.

“I rate him very, very highly. All people who know anything about football do.”

Electric: Cameron finds an extra gear.

Electric: Cameron finds an extra gear.Credit:Getty Images

That’s why the decision on who might be deployed to quieten the speedster would have occupied Geelong minds as soon as they recorded victory over Gold Coast last week.

Bews seems the obvious choice because he can match Cameron for pace when he gets on his bike.

But the jovial Geelong-bred fighter who rarely gives an inch may gain a reprieve with the team considering Jake Kolodjashnij – the unsung Tasmanian who is just five games from bringing up the ton without registering a goal or a Brownlow vote – as a potential match-up.

Kolodjashnij is excellent in the air and works the angles well on the ground to deny his opponents space. Like Bews he is unflappable and coachable, as reliable as cereal and milk, with experience matching wits with opponents such as Jake Stringer and Adam Goodes during his career.

With Tom Stewart sidelined through injury the Cats have lost an important defensive option as they have been vulnerable against teams with multiple small forwards since their golden era began back in 2007, although Tuohy and Mark O’Connor pride themselves on being able to play tall or small.

With Lincoln McCarthy, Cam Rayner and Zac Bailey floating around Eric Hipwood and Oscar McInerney’s knees however they will be occupied, so whoever gets first crack at Cameron needs to be on their game.

Because keeping Cameron subdued would take the fizz out of the Lions’ forward line and prove what the Cats haven’t been able to for nearly three years now: that Cameron is stoppable.

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