I got my opportunity to be the sub and I just wanted to grab it
In the space of a day, Nick Suban was dropped, came back in as a late replacement, named as sub and, finally, played a pivotal role in his side’s memorable one-point Len Hall Game win over Richmond at Patersons Stadium on Friday night.
The Freo utility had lost his spot in the team following a poor performance against Hawthorn in Tasmania last week that saw him subbed off in the second quarter.
But after Paul Duffield had to withdraw with a minor calf injury, Suban was contacted by senior coach Ross Lyon and informed that he’d be playing against the Tigers.
“Ross sent me a message and said I’d be the sub,” Suban said after the game.
“I was preparing today and yesterday as if I was going to play.
“It was unfair that Paul couldn’t play, but I was lucky enough to be the sub.”
It was cruel luck for Kepler Bradley, who sustained a suspected ACL injury midway through the second term, that saw Suban thrust into the action.
And the boy from Bacchus Marsh in country Victoria made sure he left nothing out on the field once he was activated.
In just over a half of football, he gathered 16 disposals, four tackles, four clearances and an inspiring third quarter goal from outside 50m in the third quarter.
“Obviously, I was a bit disappointed about last week,” he said.
“I wanted to move on. I got my opportunity to be the sub and I just wanted to grab it.”
Ever the team man, Suban didn’t want to talk about his own efforts anymore, he just wanted to focus on Freo’s excellent team effort after quarter-time.
“I just tried to play my role, it’s not about individuals,” he said.
“We made it hard for ourselves in the last quarter, but the boys found a way.
“We dug in and it was good to get the four points.”