MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 29: Joel Selwood of the Cats leads his team out onto the field during the round 15 AFL match between the Western Bulldogs and the Geelong Cats at Etihad Stadium on June 29, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Geelong skipper Joel Selwood fill face a delayed start to pre-season after undergoing hamstring surgery earlier this month, reports The Herald Sun.

The 31-year old is not expected to return to training until at least January.

“My pre-season will be staggered again and I will be looking to join back in with the group in January,” Selwood told The Herald Sun.

“I had a minor hamstring operation a couple of weeks ago so I will just make sure that I get that right and then go from there.

“So before Christmas I will be limited in what I do but I will be working behind the scenes.”

Selwood battled a knee issue last summer before playing a new role on the wing for Chris Scott’s side in 2019, averaging 21.3 disposals from his 23 games.

While the majority of his teammates will return for pre-season next Monday, Selwood won’t feature until the new year.

The veteran said the Cats know they must stay hungry and improve from a campaign where they claimed the minor premiership but bowed out to Richmond in the preliminary final.

“We know we need to improve again,” he said.

“We improved last year, we were hungry to improve, so we have to make sure that hunger is still there to get to that next stage. We got to a stage where we were thereabouts and played some really good footy against some good sides but at the end of the day we didn’t finish up how we wanted.

“The hunger is the big one, and how we sue that energy throughout whole pre-season to make sure in the lead up to Round 1 we are ready to go again. It will be pretty similar and we thought we had a pretty solid pre-season last year so we will try to get as many numbers on the track as possible … and then from there it is just making sure we are working at getting better.”