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Parker credits mentors for success

Luke McManus  August 6, 2015 4:38 PM

SwansTV - Parker press conference - August 6, 2015 Luke Parker speaks to the media ahead of training at the SCG on Thursday.
Luke Parker celebrates a goal against the Tigers.

Luke Parker celebrates a goal against the Tigers.

They were my mentors when I first got here, they gave me a clear road map as to what’s expected.

Luke Parker has paid tribute to Swans greats Jude Bolton, Ryan O’Keefe , Kieren Jack and Jarrad McVeigh ahead of his 100th game milestone on the weekend.

Parker will become the fifth fastest Swan to reach the celebrated ton when the Swans take on Geelong at Simon Stadium.

At just 22 years of age, Parker has enjoyed a stunning start to his AFL career and the midfielder told media on Thursday it’s all thanks to the likes of Bolton, O’Keefe and his current co-captains.

“They were my mentors when I first got here, they gave me a clear road map as to what’s expected,” Parker said.

“You only have to look around the room and see so many successful careers and things I want to be a part of, strive for and really buy into.

“That’s what I’m trying to do and hopefully leading the way in.”

Parker’s rapid progression to an elite Swan is bolstered by a Premiership and Bob Skilton Medal.

Swans coach John Longmire said Parker’s rise is among the best he’s seen, highlighting more of the fact Parker is the youngest player to be voted into the Swans’ leadership group.

On leadership, Parker believes the position has allowed him to take another big step forward in his football.

“It’s a special feeling…a great environment to be in,” Parker said on the elevation.

“Every day I’m learning stuff just being in the meetings seeing how the other boys look at footy, not only on the field but off the field.

“And the fact you have to step back and thinking, not only about your own football, but what’s best for the whole team.

At such a young age, being called upon to lead alongside the Club’s older and more experienced crop might be the first signs of a future captaincy position.

Parker would be honoured with the role but isn’t thinking that way at all, instead focusing solely on “leading by example” through actions on the field.

“I haven’t really thought about it too much,” Parker admitted.

“I’m still developing in that area…I still have a long way to go. Jarrad McVeigh and Kieren Jack are outstanding in the roles so I’m happy to leave it to them and just hopefully play some good footy.”

Parker sits behind Dan Hannebery, Jared Crouch, Tadhg Kennelly and Jason Saddington as the quickest Swans to 100 games.