Nathan O’Driscoll is excited to be a part of Fremantle’s rise in the AFL, signing a two-year contract extension that will keep him in Freo colours until at least the end of the 2024 season.
The 20-year-old made his debut as a medical sub against St Kilda in round two and played every game of Freo’s six-game winning streak between rounds three and eight.
His season so far is highlighted by his two goals, 20 disposals and six tackles against GWS, while thrilling fans with three of his six goals this year coming from range in the pocket.
“I’m signing on with Freo for another two years. I’m stoked and really happy with it,” O’Driscoll said.
“It’s been challenging at times, not playing all of last year and then only having this year of my contract left, so I was a bit nervous going into pre-season.
“I knew if I stuck to it, had a good pre-season and got the work under my belt, I was going to be fine. I was lucky enough to break through to the team and play decent footy, so I’m stoked to sign on.”
A Freo fan at heart, O’Driscoll is relishing being a part of the Club’s rise up the ladder, currently third with an 8-3 record after impressive away wins against Melbourne and Geelong.
“I’ve been lucky enough to win every game outside of my medical sub game (against St Kilda), that’s been unreal,” O’Driscoll said.
“We’re playing really good footy at the moment and it was good to see the boys get a good win on the weekend against Melbourne, who are a really good team.
“I grew up supporting Freo and it’s good to see we’ve slowly built in the past five years in the draft and getting new faces through the system and going up the ladder.”
O’Driscoll has not appeared since round 8 against North Melbourne due to a foot injury, but the midfielder hopes to have an impact later this season.
“I’ve got a scan early next week and that will determine how quickly we’ll ramp things up. If it’s good news, it might only be a couple more weeks, if it’s negative I’m not sure. I’m definitely going to be back this year at some time,” O’Driscoll said.
“My aim is to get back into the team, I’m going to have to go back through the WAFL. I’ll stick to it, play good footy and take my opportunity if it comes.
“I want to play finals with this team and make it far in finals.”
Head of Player Personnel David Walls said Fremantle were thrilled with how well O’Driscoll had adapted to playing at an AFL standard.
“As soon as he played AFL he just looked comfortable at the level. It’s impressive how he was able to adapt so quickly and pick up that wing role. He’s been a big positive,” Walls said.
“Nathan was one of the Covid affected players through the draft, he hadn’t moved from Northam full time to Perth, and it probably took a little while to understand everything required.
“He’s made huge inroads in that area, and what was most impressive, was how his work rate, pressure, understanding of the game and kicking has held up at AFL level.”