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Tigers have some catching up to do: Gale

Chief executive Brendon Gale says Richmond's recent success is a tribute to the culture and capabilities of staff right across the club.

1:12pm  Sep 21, 2018

Astbury to be given every chance to play

Richmond remains certain defender David Astbury will play in Friday night's preliminary final against Collingwood, despite battling a minor cold this week.

11:51am  Sep 21, 2018

No change for Tigers

Richmond will take an unchanged line-up into Friday night’s preliminary final against Collingwood at the MCG.

6:25pm  Sep 20, 2018

Grand recollections: Jack Graham

Tony Greenberg,  October 10, 2017 2:23 PM

Grand recollections: Graham Jack Graham reflects on his journey to become a Premiership player.

We continue our special post-season series presenting the thoughts of Richmond’s latest premiership heroes on that one day in September 2017. Today, it’s the turn of talented Tiger teenager Jack Graham . . .

The Grand Final lead-up

“Leading up to it I was pretty nervous . . . it was a good vibe around the Club. But then, when it came to the parade and seeing all those people, that’s when I really got nervous and it sunk in that I was playing in a Grand Final.”

The actual Grand Final contest

“It was just a battle all day, really. Adelaide’s such a good side. You never knew that we were going to put them away because they’d always come back. But in that last quarter, you thought in the back of your head, hang on, we’re a good chance of winning this.”

His role on one-time idol Rory Sloane

“On the phone half-way through the second quarter, Blake (Caracella) told me, ‘We want you to run with Sloane’. . . When I first heard it I was a bit shocked, but then I thought, oh well, here we go. And then even in the centre bounces, you’d always just have a quick look and, oh yeah, he’s right here. He’s such a great athlete, so I just ran with him all day and tried to push him under the ball, but I didn’t want to annoy him too much.” 

Final siren memories

“It was an amazing feeling . . . the roar and just looking around seeing all the boys hugging each other and celebrating. One of the best feelings ever. I’d just come to the bench, so I was hugging all the coaches and getting around the boys. And then, when that final siren rang, I just sprinted on to the field . . . It was a pretty special moment.”

What the Grand Final win means to him

“I’m very lucky, obviously. Timing was pretty good, coming in that late time of the year . . . Blokes go on and don’t even win finals, and I’ve managed to win a Grand Final in my first year . . . It means a lot.”

His game-high three Grand Final goals

“First one I was looking to handball it off . . . I think ‘Cotch’ (Trent Cotchin) gave it to me and I was going give it back, but he said, “Just kick the thing’ . . . That’s what I did, and it went through. So it was pretty special. The other two . . . just dobbed them. Came off the boot alright and they went through.”

Overcoming several setbacks in his debut AFL season

“I come to the Club with hamstring tendinitis. Nothing major, but they didn’t want to chuck me out there straight away and ruin me for the rest of the year. So that was managed. I finally got fit training and then broke my ankle, so that was another setback . . . I was in a moon boot for about six to eight weeks . . . The boys were great getting around me. Eventually I got out on the park and managed to play some good, consistent footy in the VFL, and then got the (senior) call-up.”

Senior debut v Fremantle at Domain Stadium

“It was pretty special. There were a couple of weeks before where I was emergency, but I never really knew when I was going to debut. That week, ‘Dimma’ (coach Damien Hardwick) presented it to me that I was going to play . . . To have friends and family and my partner over there was a special moment, and luckily we got the win.”

Season 2018 aspirations

“Obviously, I want that (team) success, but I’m excited because hopefully I’ll be able to get a full pre-season under my belt going into next year. So I can only get better from there, I hope.”

Huge influence of the Tiger Army

“They’re amazing. During the finals, just seeing them here at our open training sessions, it was pretty special. Just doing a warm-up lap and hearing that roar, gets you pumped for the game. And then to hear them when you run out . . . It’s like you want to kick goals just so you can hear that roar.”