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Lewis looks to youngsters for improvement

Matt Burgan  November 29, 2017 2:40 PM

If he (Hogan) strings games together and gets that confidence back, he’s a real key forward for us

JORDAN Lewis is backing the club’s younger brigade to step-up over the pre-season and into its 2018 campaign.

The four-time premiership player said the likes of Clayton Oliver, Christian Petracca, Angus Brayshaw and Jesse Hogan all had the ability to take their game to the next level. And he added that Hogan had come back strongly after a challenging 2017 season. 

“I couldn’t imagine what he went through last season and his ability to deal with that and come back and play a few games – and then get struck down by injury again – you feel for the young guy,” Lewis said.

“He’s come back with a really good attitude and let’s just hope he gets a free run at it this year, because we’ve all seen what he can do in the past.

“If he strings games together and gets that confidence back, he’s a real key forward for us.”

Lewis said everyone had come back in good shape “because you’re scared of what happens if you don’t”. And he said he felt at ease entering his second pre-season with Melbourne after an outstanding career with Hawthorn.

“You understand how the club operates and how players train and play,” he said.

“It was a bit unfamiliar and I was stepping into the unknown, coming into last pre-season. But it’s been really comfortable and the guys have come back in some good shape, which is a really good sign.

“We’re pretty impressed with the whole group.”

Meanwhile, Lewis said he was relishing the addition of twin boys to his family.

“It’s going really well. We’ve brought in two beautiful children into the world and it pays to have a patient wife. As an athlete, you need sleep overnight, so she’s done the hard yards so far, but [we’ve got] two really healthy boys, so we’re really blessed,” he said.