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Latest News

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From the captain: Nat Fyfe

Nat Fyfe  December 27, 2017 6:00 AM

Nat Fyfe is excited to see what 2018 brings. - Fremantle Dockers,Nat Fyfe

Nat Fyfe is excited to see what 2018 brings.

In season 2017, our football club was faced with challenge and opportunity. A significant list overhaul and a recognition and acceptance of a longer term plan meant that this was always going to be likely.

I was voted as captain while Lachie Neale and Michael Walters joined the leadership group, in a sign the players too had an eye firmly on the medium term future of our club.

Winning six from seven games early in the year shows what this group is capable of, but big losses towards the end shows how much work is still to be done.

There were seven debutants in 2017, which is something we haven't done at Fremantle since my first year at the club in 2010.

It is a long-term investment, banging games into our first and second-year players and educating them about what it means to play AFL football.

We are seeing some exciting development out of the likes of Luke Ryan, Griffin Logue, Brennan Cox, Sean Darcy and our second-year players – Darcy Tucker in particular.

They play a modernised style of football that is highly skilled, a style that our fans and members will want to come and watch.

We had four players join Freo from other clubs at the end of 2016, Joel Hamling, Bradley Hill, Shane Kersten and Cam McCarthy.

All four contributed heavily at different stages throughout the year, with particular mention to the work of Bradley, who was the eventual winner of our Doig Medal, and to Joel who held down the key defensive position exceptionally.

The players mentioned, both starting their careers and continuing theirs in this new look Fremantle outfit, are where the improvement must and will come from.

David Mundy, Stephen Hill, Hayden Ballantyne, Aaron Sandilands, Michael Johnson and our other senior players are conditioned to perform every week and will do so until the curtain is drawn on each of their careers respectively.

The weight of improvement has always lay with the majority and our current first to fifth year players, coupled with the players who arrive through our 2017 AFL Draft, will determine how rapidly Fremantle ascend back up the ladder.

Michael and Lachie’s addition to the leadership group came with a fresh perspective and a deeper reach into the diverse nature of our list.

Both players faced a steep learning curve, with the challenge of managing different injuries on top of their own personal performance, while still playing an influential leadership role throughout the week and on game day.

Their efforts in 2017 should be commended and I look forward to seeing their growth as leaders next season.

We are always looking to unearth new leadership talent to help spread the load.

Connor Blakely, Brady Grey, Alex Pearce, Joel Hamling and Bradley Hill have been identified as players who have the tools and influence to help lead the group in coming years.

The current six-man leadership group of Aaron Sandilands, David Mundy, Lee Spurr, Michael Walters, Lachie Neale and myself are constantly refining how best to be the connect between Ross Lyon and his coaches and the players.

My first year as Captain has been challenging but one I have thoroughly enjoyed and I want to thank the Leadership group for their support and council.  

I believe the group understand the opportunity they have at Fremantle.

We have a new training and administration facility in Cockburn that is world-class as well as the brand new Perth Stadium as our home ground.

As a current day AFL player, being based in WA and in particular Fremantle Football Club offers as good an opportunity to succeed as any professional sporting team in the country.

Our coaching panel led by Ross Lyon, our administration, our support staff, our medical staff and everyone else who represents the Fremantle Dockers are doing what they can to help our players win games and be a relevant and successful force in the competition.

To our fans, I can’t thank you enough for all of your support.

You’re passionate and loyal – you’ve been patient for a long time and we will continue to plead that patience for the next few years. There are exciting times ahead and I can’t wait to continue on this journey with you all.

Go Freo!