YOU know you are in reasonable football form when you feature on the front page of the weekly AFL Record. But local football fans would have been left in no surprise to see the headline ‘Jarryd Roughead – Finally in the Spotlight’ over the weekend. The article, by AFL Record’s Mark Macgugan, goes in depth with the Leongatha product about his standout season with the top of the table Hawks.
Roughead speaks on his injury comeback last season, the grand final loss to Sydney, his side’s season as well as his own personal form and the fascinating story of how he became a Hawk way back in the 2004 draft. Roughead was leading the Coleman Medal with 54 goals until the weekend and averaged 16 disposals a game, making him arguably Hawthorn’s best player in 2013. Roughead (54 goals) now sits behind West Coast’s Josh Kennedy (59) in the race for the Coleman Medal with four matches in the regular season remaining and is a strong chance to win his maiden All-Australian selection and club best and fairest.
Hawks skipper, Luke Hodge, praised his versatile teammate in the piece. “I know a lot of people externally have pumped up that this has been his best year, but we believe he has been playing this kind of football for the last three years,” Hodge said. “In previous years, ‘Roughy’ has been doing the harder work up the ground and it’s been ‘Buddy’ (Lance Franklin) who has got the reward of the goals. “But it’s sort of changed a bit this year and it’s good to see Roughy getting rewarded for a lot of the harder work that’s he’s put in.” Roughead said 2013, in which he has played all 18 matches, has been his most consistent season.
“The 2008 season was pretty good because we won the flag and I contributed to that, but this year I’m just in the game more,” he said. “This year I’ve been able to play four or five or six different positions in any given week. “I’m definitely recovering a lot better from games… I’m feeling a lot better than what I was last year it’s fair to say.” Roughead played down speculation of a Coleman Medal win, saying he would much prefer a second premiership medal in its place. “I wouldn’t have thought I’d be a chance to win it, I’d rather win a different medal to be honest,” he said. “So, while we have got the chance to win one, we might as well make hay while the sun shines. I was only 21 when we won it in 2008, so to get another one would be unreal.”