WA natives turn down moves back home
AFL: West Australian clubs got the double whammy when not one but two young forwards raised in the state re-signed with their eastern seaboard sides.
First it was Jesse Hogan, then Rory Lobb, who ended months of speculation about their futures by recommitting to Melbourne and the GWS Giants, respectively.
Leaving both West Coast and Fremantle disappointed, both players inked contract extensions and are now locked in until at least 2019.
"Melbourne is where I want to be. I really like the city and I'm really excited about what we can do together as a footy club,” said Hogan, 21, who booted 44 goals in his debut season before following up with 41 in 2016.
"What excites me about Melbourne is the young talent we've got. We feel like we are building something special and that's something I want to be a part of.
"Goody (coach Simon Goodwin) has been great. We've got a really close relationship and I think he is going to be great for me personally next year and the rest of the boys as well.
"I didn't really want all the speculation out there, so there is a bit of relief now that we've got it done and I can just focus on being a footballer again.
"Obviously a lot has been made of me being a Perth boy, but the club has been great in allowing me to head home when I can and that's something that's made my decision much easier.
"They've been really good with my situation and something that I am really appreciative of.”
Lobb, 23, blossomed into a powerful ruck-forward this season, becoming the No.1 contested marker in the game, who also slotted 29 goals.
"I'm really happy to have re-signed with the Giants,” he told the club website.
"As a playing group we took some big steps this year and I think there is still plenty of improvement in us, which is exciting.
"I've grown really close to my teammates and I believe that if we stick together, we can hopefully achieve the ultimate success in the future.”