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Higgins set to continue on his merry way

JLT2: Higgins boots three Watch Jack Higgins highlights from Richmond's JLT win over Hawthorn.

It’s very early days, but the signs are strong that talented Tiger cub Jack Higgins will not be afflicted with the dreaded second-year blues in 2019.

AFL/VFL history is littered with examples of players who shone brightly in their first season at the game’s highest level, only to suffer a dramatic form slump the next year. Jack Higgins definitely doesn’t look like following in their footsteps.

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Higgins, who made a significant impact in Richmond’s senior side throughout his 2018 debut season, was one of the Tigers’ best performers in the two-match pre-season JLT Community Series.

He had 21 disposals, including five inside-50s, took eight marks and kicked a goal in the JLT1 win against Melbourne at Shepparton.

The clever small forward/midfielder followed that up with an impressive 19-disposal display against Hawthorn in the JLT2 match at Launceston last Saturday night.

Included among Higgins’ disposals were 10 contested possessions, three goals and eight score involvements all up.

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Higgins’ trademark ability to create something out of nothing was a major highlight of his performance under the Launceston lights that helped spark a big comeback win by Richmond.

In the third quarter, with the ball on the ground close to the Tigers’ goal, he simply bent down, picked it up, and seamlessly snapped a ‘snag’.

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Then, during the final term, after receiving a handpass from teammate Liam Baker, he coolly slotted through a goal with a kick from the outside of his boot.

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Higgins, who turns 20 next Tuesday (March 19), played 20 games in his 2018 debut season of AFL football with Richmond, averaged 16.2 disposals per match and kicked a total of 15 goals, including the AFL’s Goal of the Year – an amazing six-pointer against Collingwood at the MCG in Round 19.