Let's take a look at Clayton Oliver's 2021...
No. AFL games: 25
Disposals – 31.6 avg. (789 total) 6th in AFL
Contested possessions – 17.4 avg. (434 total – highest ever total on record) 1st in AFL
Ground ball gets – 11.6 avg. (289 total) 1st in AFL
Goals – 11 total
Inside 50s – 5.2 avg. (130 total)
Pressure acts – 24.8 avg. (619 total)
Score involvements – 7.2 avg. (181 total)
Total clearances – 7.4 avg. (186 total) 4th in AFL
2021 saw Oliver put up a career-best season, hitting the ground running from Round 1 and not missing a beat, playing all 25 games and averaging 31.6 disposals and 17.4 contested possessions.
The star midfielder was at his absolute best and proved to be an unstoppable force through the midfield, his contested football unmatched, breaking the record for total contested possessions registered by a player in a single season. Oliver produced consecutive notable performances but one of his top displays came in Melbourne’s Round 23 win over Geelong. He racked up 37 disposals, 26 contested possessions, nine clearances, eight score involvements and two goals.
He was recognised for his outstanding season in the red and blue by receiving the AFLCA’s Champion Player of the Year Award in addition to being named in the 2021 All-Australian side. The No.13 finished third in the Brownlow Medal count, polling 31 votes, the highest vote tally of any Melbourne player in the club's history within the 3-2-1 system. Oliver topped off his list of achievements for the year by becoming a part of Melbourne's drought-breaking premiership side.