Geelong midfielder Billie Smedts ignited the Cats in the final term to spark a 20-point win over Coburg at Coburg City Oval on Sunday.
Smedts, who had 16 touches and kicked 1.2, will be in the mix for an AFL return in Saturday night's blockbuster against Hawthorn. He produced a stellar final term, kicking the opening goal and playing a part in two others. The Cats won 16.19 (115) to 14.12 (95).
The Cats will be brimming with confidence at taking on the Hawks with the opportunity to expose them in the ruck with Nathan Vardy and Trent West getting through unscathed against Coburg.
Vardy kicked 2.2 from 10 touches and five marks, while West had 36 hitouts.
George Horlin-Smith, who made his AFL debut earlier this year, was impressive in his return from a quad injury with 22 possessions and said he hoped to continue to improve the defensive side of his game.
"There's a lot of components of my game that I need to keep improving. The game these days is very defensive,'' said Horlin-Smith, winner of the Norm Goss Medal for best afield in last year's VFL grand final.
The quad injury came at a bad time for Horlin-Smith, who had just made his mark after playing a shut-down role on Sydney's Josh Kennedy.
Cats midfielder Jackson Thurlow sustained a facial injury and will have scans on Monday, while Jed Bews, son of former club captain Andrew, suffered a slight hamstring strain.
Richmond veteran Shane Tuck excelled in his return from a shoulder injury for Coburg with 31 touches, while Ricky Petterd was probably best afield for the first three quarters and finished with 29 disposals. Robin Nahas (24) and Sam Lonergan (22) were also among the Tigers' best.
Western Bulldogs veteran Daniel Cross was among the best and Dylan Addison kicked four goals for the Seagulls in their impressive 25-point win over the Box Hill Hawks.