Fans Players

Blitzing the pack

Geelong utility Mark Blicavs is set to play his 200th AFL match against Melbourne on Saturday night. The dual best and fairest winner sat down with AFLPA digital manager Ben Guthrie for an in-depth chat on the AFL Players’ Association’s Over the PA podcast.

When Geelong utility Mark Blicavs made the leap from athletics to a career in the AFL he had one thing on his mind: “This has to work”.

That steely mentality has spurred the former middle-distance athlete to a career that is due to span 200 games when the Cats do battle with Melbourne at GMHBA Stadium on Saturday night.

A dual best and fairest winner after being drafted with pick No.54 in the 2012 rookie draft, Blicavs has been one of the Cats’ recruiting team’s greatest success stories.

“When I made that decision to go from athletics to football, I thought to myself, ‘There’s no turning back, this has to work,” Blicavs told the AFL Players’ Association’s Over the PA podcast.

“If this doesn’t work I’m not going back to athletics – this has to work.”

Blicavs said he fast-tracked his development by watching game footage, working on his craft and trying to soak up as much information as he could from decorated teammates such as Harry Taylor.

“I did everything I could to try to be as ready as possible,” Blicavs said.

“Just to prove to myself that I could do it and to those who thought I couldn’t do it… I like proving people wrong.”

Show notes

  • 15.07min-15.40min – Mark talks about the fact that “this has to work” after making the transition from athletics to footy
  • 18.15-19.20 – Mark talks about “fast-tracking” his improvement after collecting four touches in a game after running 16.5km
  • 22.30-24.01 – Mark talks about his mentality when playing in different positions as the AFL’s ‘ultimate utility’
  • 26.45-27.25 – Mark discussed what he’s accomplished in the AFL and his thoughts on playing 200 AFL games