'Father figure' Kennedy a role model to follow

'Father figure' Kennedy a role model to follow

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Dual Coleman Medallist and three-time All-Australian Josh Kennedy will play his 250th game in Sunday’s derby against the Dockers. Teammate, close friend, and fellow Northampton product Jamie Cripps has penned an insightful piece for aflplayers.com.au on what makes ‘JK’ one of the best.

Growing up in Northampton, I saw Josh Kennedy from afar and always wanted to be like him.

As a junior, joining the Shark Pack at East Fremantle, like JK did, was always the path I wanted to take. Once I got towards high school and JK was drafted, I thought, ‘That’s the way to do it’.

When I joined the Eagles after starting my career in Victoria, just like JK did five years before me, he took me under his wing and taught me plenty about the game.

JK’s a fierce competitor. He might not get the possessions now that he used to, but the way he works so hard to give a contest and get the ball to ground for us smaller boys is awesome.

You just know he’s always going to stand up in the big moments and kick the big goals. He’ll always do the special things.

In practice, he always gets the best out of himself.

He’ll battle the defenders one-on-one and he’s always going at 110 per cent when he’s doing it, so it’s great to watch him in action.

Even after training, he’ll have a stupid amount of shots at goal from all the different angles, and he just does it every week.

And off the field, he’s a legend.

He’s like a father figure for us boys. He’s been through it all himself, so if I’ve ever got any life problems, I’ll go to him and have a chat, because he always seems to have the answer.

He’s a bit of a hippy as well. He gets into some weird stuff, so it’s always great to see what he’s into when he’s at home.

He loves his veggie gardens, and a few years back he was brewing his own beer.

I’m not sure if JK ever thought that he’d play 250 games, but he’s played 250 elite games as well.

All the boys stand taller when he’s out there.

Hopefully he has a ripper this weekend and kicks a bag, because the boys will be getting around him.

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