Subiaco vice-captain Greg Clark’s AFL dream was finally realised on Thursday night.
After being overlooked in each of the last six drafts, the 24-year old’s name was at last read out by the West Coast Eagles at Pick 62.
Not that he was even aware at the time.
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As reported by The West, Clark was so accustomed to being let down on draft night that after West Coast used its last pick, he turned off his TV.
Little did Clark know that the Eagles had traded back into the draft to nab him with one of the late selections.
“It’s incredible. I thought I was done and then my manager rang going ballistic,” Clark told The West.
“I’d experienced the same feeling before and thought I could still go in the rookie draft. But then my phone started going off.
“After six years trying to become a better footballer and better person, for that to happen, I am so happy. I’m over the moon.”
It comes after the bid-bodied midfielder was best on ground in this year’s WAFL Grand Final, racking up 24 disposals and booting two goals to cap off a tremendous 2021 campaign.
Among players that featured in at least five WAFL league matches this year, Clark ranked first for tackles (7.3 per match), fifth for disposals (27.1), seventh for contested possessions and 12th for score involvements.
“I watched him play in the Grand Final this year, he got absolutely crunched in the first quarter and a lot of players wouldn’t have gotten up,” AFL draft expert Michael Ablett said on Fox Footy.
“From what I’m led to believe he played out the rest of the game on painkillers and came out best on ground.
“He’s a player who’s come a long, long way, he’s a beast… for all the young fellas around the country, go and have a look at Greg Clark.
“If you see him hopefully play some league footy in 2022, he’s just an outstanding example of perseverance, someone who never gave up and did take the advice on board and went and changed his game.”
Clark hopes of an AFL debut have been boosted too with Eagles midfielder Jack Redden set to miss around 10 to 12 weeks after undergoing shoulder surgery, potentially delaying his start to the season.