St Kilda club champion JACK STEVEN talks to us about the Saints’ preseason and reveals who you should have in your fantasy football team this year.
He has just come off a season in which he won his second St Kilda best-and-fairest award, but midfielder Jack Steven is adamant he needs to improve if the Saints are to mix it with the AFL’s top echelon this year.
“I’m as hungry as ever to get better,’ Steven, 25, told aflplayers.com.au.
“I’ve got to get better, everyone’s got to get better so that we can become a better team. So (I’m) really excited for this year and can’t wait to get into it.
“(The players) are all enthusiastic and going nuts at the moment” – Jack Steven
“We’ve got to catch some of the bigger teams. We’ve got a good young list, so they’re all enthusiastic and going nuts at the moment, which is awesome.’’
After struggling in 2014 because of a pre-season foot injury, Steven rebounded strongly last year to play every game on his way to a second Trevor Barker Award for the Saints best-and-fairest, ahead of fellow midfielder David Armitage.
He said the foot problem “had all been fine’’ over this preseason.
“I don’t do every session, but I think my fitness is good at the moment,’’ he said. “Pretty much after Christmas I’ve finished all sessions, so it’s been good.’’
Steven believes the Saints’ improvement will come from having another 12 months of experience into what is largely a very young squad, which would help the team compete for longer periods of matches.
“We were really proud of our pressure last year and hopefully we just sustain that for longer this year and that will put us in with the chance to win a few more games,’’ he said. “If we can keep that up for four quarters that will make us more competitive, hopefully.’’
Steven also had some tips for fantasy football coaches about which Saints were worth inclusion in their teams this season.
Jack Steven is a $562,700 midfielder in SuperCoach and a $618,000 midfielder in AFL Fantasy. See his tips below.
JACK STEVEN’S FANTASY FOOTY TIPS
Which established player is in for a huge season?
“Leigh Montagna. He’s training really well at the moment.”
Leigh Montagna: SuperCoach: ($599,000 Fwd/Mid)
AFL Fantasy: ($603,000 Fwd/Mid)
Who do you expect to have a break-out year?
“Jack Billings only played about 10 games last season, so if he can get a full season I reckon he’ll go through the roof. He’s been training really well and I think he can’t wait for the games to start. I’d reckon he’ll play forward and mid.”
Jack Billings: SuperCoach: ($455,100 Fwd)
AFL Fantasy ($452,000 Fwd)
Which young gun will have a big impact?
“Maybe Blake Acres, or even our first-round draft pick Jade Gresham, they’ve both been really impressive at training.”
Blake Acres: SuperCoach $256,700 (Mid)
AFL Fantasy ($238,000 Mid)
Jade Gresham: SuperCoach ($144,300 Mid)
AFL Fantasy ($187,000 Mid)