JAY Lockhart’s story has been well publicised, and rightly so.
He made his AFL debut for the red and blue just 15 days after being recruited by the club, and despite a whirlwind few weeks to kick of the season, he has fully settled into his new home at Melbourne.
“It’s been very enjoyable, the last few months,” Lockhart said on the club’s Inside Melbourne podcast.
“It all happened pretty quick, but once I got settled in … I’ve loved every minute of it.
“Obviously working full-time as a builder for five years, and then getting to be an AFL player is unreal.”
The 23-year-old first ran out with the Dees against Geelong in Round 2, and while he could’ve easily been satisfied with one senior game, he is determined to make a career for himself.
Lockhart has now played eight matches at the top level, with his best performance coming last weekend against the Dockers.
The versatile small had 21 disposals and slotted two goals, helping his side get back to form after the bye.
“It was very enjoyable,” Lockhart said.
“I think over the break we went to a new level with togetherness and obviously we’re still building on that, but it just felt like we were a lot more involved with each other.
“We were just playing a team game – that was at the front of everyone’s mind, just to play a team game and we got the result off the back of that.”
Lockhart’s tricks were on display in Round 14, as the newcomer used his class with ball in hand to hurt the opposition.
And although he still has to pinch himself from time to time, he’s no longer getting too overawed by the big stage.
“I think the last couple of weeks, or the last couple of games that I’ve played, I’ve tried to forget about that part of it and just go out and play,” he said.
“But for the first five or six weeks, as we were running out through the banner and looking up at everyone in the crowd, it was a bit of a whirlwind still, so I’ve just tried to tone it back a bit and play.”
Tune into the full Inside Melbourne podcast to hear from Lockhart, Jack Viney and Tom Sparrow.