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Melbourne Football Club

‘Amazing’ to be part of day: Petracca

It was just a great day in general. There were so many fans that came out and supported us – not just us, but Collingwood as well and the whole cure for MND – and seeing Neale Daniher with a smile on his face at the end of the game was a pretty special feeling
Christian Petracca

CHRISTIAN Petracca, who won the Neale Daniher Trophy for his best-on-ground performance in Melbourne’s four-point win over Collingwood on Queen’s Birthday, said it was an “amazing feeling” to be part of the day.

Petracca said it was a “rollercoaster ride” for a variety of reasons – but one he cherished.

“It was just a great day in general. There were so many fans that came out and supported us – not just us, but Collingwood as well and the whole cure for MND – and seeing Neale Daniher with a smile on his face at the end of the game was a pretty special feeling,” he said.

“[Being named best-on-ground] was a good accomplishment to be given, but I just tried to keep my game really simple and attack the contest … but we knew if we came back to our strengths, which was contested possession and outnumbering them, we’d be in the game.

“It’s quite funny – [we were down by] 28 points [which] looks like a big score, but once you get a couple of goals and the momentum starts to go, from there – that’s where we feed off as a young team and we feed off that energy and that drive.”

Petracca said the mid-season break came at the right time, but he was rapt to get the second half of the season underway.

“I felt like I needed a break because this is the most games I’d played in a row since I’ve played AFL,” he said.

“It was good to have a break and refresh.

“It was a bit weird having 16 days off [between games] – you don’t really have that – but we had three or four good training sessions and kept it really simple. We got away and came back refreshed – it was awesome.”

Petracca, who kicked three goals in the win, said he could’ve improved on one area of his game.

“I could’ve jumped a bit better at the footy – Jeremy Howe got a couple of good marks on me. He’s just crazy at marking,” he said with a smile.

“I could’ve done that a bit better, but overall I’m really happy and just to get the win – it’s just amazing.”

Neale Daniher Trophy voting

Tim Watson (Channel 7)

3 – Sidebottom (Coll)

2 – Petracca (Melb)

1 – Oliver (Melb)

Jay Clark (Herald Sun)

3 – Petracca (Melb)

2 – Sidebottom (Coll)

1 – Oliver (Melb)

Michael Gleeson (The Age)

3 – Petracca (Melb)

2 – Oliver (Melb)

1 – Sidebottom (Coll)

Total votes

Christian Petracca: 2, 3, 3 (8)

Steele Sidebottom: 3, 2, 1 (6)

Clayton Oliver: 1, 1, 2 (4)