Drew Petrie to play for Terrigal Avoca in Black Diamond Cup

Former AFL star Drew Petrie is set to make a guest appearance for defending Black Diamond Cup premiers Terrigal Avoca on July 28.

Drew Petrie

Drew Petrie

Petrie registered with the Panthers before June 30 and is due to play against Nelson Bay in round 16 at Hylton Moore Oval.

The 35-year-old retired after last season with 332 AFL games, finishing with a year at West Coast after 16 campaigns and 316 matches with North Melbourne.

This year Petrie has made cameos with Pearcedale and Ballarat. The Panthers confirmed Petrie had agreed to do the same for them. Terrigal Avoca are equal leaders with Cardiff after one loss in 12 games.

AAP reports: Geelong's midfield generally hogs the headlines, but Sydney coach John Longmire is just as wary of finding a way to overwhelm the AFL's stingiest defence.

The Swans host the Cats at the SCG on Thursday night in a contest that will be a good gauge of both sides' premiership credentials.

Sydney risk tumbling out of the top four if they lose, while percentage is all that separates the eighth-placed Cats from ninth-placed North Melbourne and 10th-placed Hawthorn.

Quelling the influence of Patrick Dangerfield, Joel Selwood and Gary Ablett will rank high on Longmire's wishlist this week. George Hewett is likely to shadow one of the star midfielders and Longmire admitted he had a "big task ahead of him", but the coach also highlighted the Cats' defence.

Geelong have conceded a league-best 9.7 goals per game this season.

"Their defence has been super all year," Longmire told reporters.

"That's probably been one of their biggest strengths.

"They're a really even team and we expect a really tough contest.

"Both teams are in the same boat, trying to bounce back after a loss ... our games against Geelong are ripping games of footy most times and we expect this week to be no different."

The Cats have done well this year to fill the immense void left by veteran defenders Tom Lonergan and Andrew Mackie, who both retired at the end of the 2017 season.

Versatile big man Mark Blicavs, who suffered a toe injury last week, has excelled as a key defender and looms as Lance Franklin's likely opponent provided he is passed fit.

The Swans enjoyed a 17-point win over the Cats in Geelong earlier this season, which Franklin missed because of injury.