Dockers star makes surprise call and predicts it will give the club a boost
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Fremantle champion Nat Fyfe has resigned as club captain after six seasons in the role, saying it was a tough decision but would make the club stronger.
He informed his teammates of his decision on Tuesday. Two-time Brownlow Medalist Fyfe started in the role in 2017.
“The decision was tough. It’s something I’ve known for three or four weeks,” Fyfe said.
“Last year was a difficult year for me individually, but a great year for the club and it started to pave the way for a transition.
“Intuitively I knew it was an exciting opportunity for the club to step aside and let someone else through.
“It took a while for the emotions and my mind to align with my intuition, I feel like I’m giving up on a dream in some ways, but once I connect with that feeling, it opens up the possibility of much more.
“I am optimistic about what this transition can bring to the club.”
Fyfe said he would continue to help his teammates when needed, just outside of a formal leadership role.
“By stepping away from the leadership group completely, it allows me to focus all my energy on helping our fellow attackers and relearning my craft,” Fyfe said.
“It also allows someone else to potentially come into the leadership group and give us that new leadership push that will propel us forward.”
Peter Bell, Fremantle Football Chief Executive, said: “On behalf of Fremantle Football Club, I would like to thank Nathan for his vital contribution as captain over the past six seasons.
“Last year we came out of a major roster rebuild to get back into the Finals, and as captain during that time, Nathan has been a vital stabilizing force and leader through that transition.
“Nathan has led by example both on and off the pitch, and the strength we boast of as a club at the moment in terms of talent, work ethic and leadership can be attributed to his advices.
“I understand Nathan’s desire to step aside as captain as well as all official leadership duties so he can focus on his football as best he can, but we know his influence on the group will continue. “
The club are yet to announce their new captain or management group.
Meanwhile, Fremantle star midfielder Andrew Brayshaw has labeled rookie Luke Jackson his No.1 ‘most exciting prospect’ this pre-season.
Jackson’s move to the Dockers was the big talking point of the trade period, with the former Melbourne ruckman determined to lead Fremantle to a flag.
The 21-year-old’s ability to play in the ruck and forward will give Fremantle vital flexibility and help fill the void left by the late Rory Lobb (Bulldogs).
Brayshaw was blown away by Jackson’s skills at ground level and can’t wait to see the big man in action this season.
“There are a few that have really impressed me, but I’m probably most excited for Luke Jackson,” Brayshaw told 6PR Perth when asked about the club’s pre-season.
“He’s already shown he can be a really dominant ruck and striker.
“As a big guy, his ability to play almost like another midfielder once he’s tapped him (is) really exciting, and he comes out in front of the saves and takes the game.
“For a big guy, he has really good tight skills. He’s probably my number one most exciting prospect.
Brayshaw was also impressed with Jaeger O’Meara, who was traded from Hawthorn this offseason.
O’Meara’s arrival will help make up for the loss of decorated midfielder David Mundy, who retired at the age of 37.
Fremantle ended their six-year drought in the finals last season, beating the Bulldogs in a thrilling playoff before falling to Collingwood by 20 points in the semi-finals.
The Dockers have set themselves the goal of winning a flag by 2025, and the group of players are looking forward to achieving that goal.
“We all got a taste of what (the final) is, to be up there, and we all loved it,” Brayshaw said.
“We want to be in the top four and give ourselves the best chance of getting to the finals.
“We don’t want to be a team that just makes up numbers. We want to be at the top and that’s what motivates all the players and all the coaches.