On Brownlow Medal night, Fremantle fans were given a brief reminder that there is more to their midfield than star leaders Nat Fyfe and David Mundy, and the exciting up and coming talent in Adam Cerra, Andrew Brayshaw and Caleb Serong.
For a two game stretch against Adelaide and St Kilda in rounds five and six, Darcy Tucker registered Brownlow votes in back to back games - the only votes of his career.
The 23-year-old was well on the way to a breakout season until he was felled by a hamstring injury against Geelong in round eight.
Three week’s prior he had two goals and 16 disposals against the Crows, highlighted by his efforts to win the footy in the backline and then run the length of the ground to take a mark inside 50.
This effort from Tucker was an incredible highlight! To see him put in a run like that basically after he'd already ran out 4 quarters of footy was phenomenal. He was brilliant and deserved to kick the winner for sure ?? pic.twitter.com/PY0fmf9dV5— Amber (@bam_123_) July 6, 2020
He was also one of the key contributors to Fremantle’s enthralling comeback win against the Saints.
Now well on the mend, Tucker said he finds it hard not to be frustrated with how his season ended.
“I obviously wanted to get through a full season, so to get injured with a pretty bad hamstring injury was a bit of a downfall for me,” Tucker said.
“I felt like I was getting into the swing of things and having some good form in games. I was really keen to play the rest of the season and have a really good push for finals.
“Unfortunately, I had an injury but it’s onwards and upwards from here. I’m very excited for next season and I’ll come back bigger and better.”
Tucker said he’s determined to be a midfield regular as the competition for a spot in the middle ramps up.
“Midfield minutes is a big thing for me, I want to get plenty of time in the midfield and we do have a lot of guys going through there which made it tough at the start of the year,” Tucker said.
“I want to stamp my authority in the midfield and become a really good player for this footy club.
“I think I’m taking steps forward. I’m going to look to grow myself on and off the field as much as possible and be a better footballer next year than I was this year.”
Tucker said he’s not the only one at Fremantle with that motivation.
“At the start of the year, we could have easily been 5-0,” Tucker said.
“In our losses, we haven’t been too far away and we still had a really good season, we were more consistent which was good to see.
“I think another preseason under out belts, training the new system under Justin Longmuir as well, we’re all going to get more comfortable and we’re going to keep progressing.
“While we’re happy with the progression, we want to play finals footy and we want to win a premiership. We won’t be satisfied until that happens and I can see it coming very soon.”