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Parker crowned Bob Skilton Medallist

Sydney Swans Media  October 6, 2017 11:14 PM

Skilton Medal: Luke Parker wins Skilton Medal Luke Parker has taken out the 2017 Bob Skilton Medal.

Sydney Swans vice-captain Luke Parker has been crowned the 2017 Bob Skilton Medallist in front of more than 900 guests at The Star Events Centre.

It’s the second time the 24-year-old has won Sydney’s highest individual award, also taking it out in 2014.

Parker polled in all but three of his 24 games this season, averaging 25 disposals, six tackles, six clearances, four marks and just under a goal a game.

The tough on-baller finished on 696 votes, just ahead of Coleman Medallist Lance Franklin (650 votes) who tied with rebounding defender Jake Lloyd (650). Sydney skipper Josh Kennedy finished close behind on 580 votes. 

Parker joins an illustrious group of players to have won the award more than once, including Bob Skilton, Peter Bedford, Paul Kelly, Adam Goodes, Jarrad McVeigh and captain Kennedy.

Sydney Swans coach John Longmire praised Parker’s work ethic and leadership.

“We know and see every week how much Luke competes – he’s just a fantastic competitor,” Longmire said.

“Luke had a delayed start to pre-season due to the knee injury he suffered in last year’s preliminary final, and while he was still able to train at times, he wasn’t able to get that consistency of form that we would have liked early in the year.

“As he always does, he was able to keep pushing, fight through that and he ended up having a great year.

“In terms of leadership, Luke’s ability to lead took another step forward this year as one of our vice-captains to Josh Kennedy. He helps to set the standards around the club and on the ground on match-day. He has the ability to grasp what the team needs at any particular time and that shows what type of quality person he is.”

The top 10 finishing order for the 2017 Sydney Swans Club Champion award is as follows:

Luke Parker 696
Lance Franklin 650
Jake Lloyd 650
Josh Kennedy 580
George Hewett 571
Heath Grundy 569
Tom Papley 556
Dan Hannebery 546
Zak Jones 543
Isaac Heeney 518

Note: Club Champion votes were awarded by the five coaches – John Longmire, Stuart Dew, Henry Playfair, Josh Francou and Brett Kirk. A player can be awarded a maximum of 50 votes per game, and coaches can allocate up to 10 points for as many or as few players as they deem appropriate, per match.

Other awards presented on the night:

The Paul Kelly Players’ Player Award – Josh Kennedy
In his first year as skipper, Josh Kennedy had another consistent campaign, playing 21 games, averaging 28 disposals, seven clearances and five tackles. The three-time Bob Skilton Medallist has finished in the top four of the count in each of his eight seasons at Sydney.

The Dennis Carroll Award for the Most Improved – George Hewett
In just his second year of senior football, Hewett had a memorable 2017 season, finishing fifth in the Club Champion Award behind Parker, Franklin, Lloyd and Kennedy. The 21-year-old played all 24 games, averaging a career-high 19 disposals, four marks and five tackles playing up forward and in the midfield.

Rising Star Award – Lewis Melican
The 20-year-old rookie-listed player had to wait until his third season with the Swans to get his opportunity at senior level but he made an immediate impact showing he’s got a bright future in red and white. Called up to make his debut in Round 5, Melican played a further 16 games for the year, holding down a key post in defence. Arguably Melican’s best game was in Round 18 when he was named the AFL’s Rising Star nominee for his defensive work on St Kilda champion Nick Riewoldt.

The Barry Round Best Clubman Award – Callum Sinclair
The Sydney ruckman/forward has been a popular member of the playing group since joining the Swans from West Coast during the 2015 trade period. A terrific team mate on and off the field, Sinclair played 19 games, booting 14 goals for the season. 

John Yates Award – Dan Milton-Hine
The architect behind the inception of the Mosman Swans Junior Football Club was recognised for his contribution to the development of the game at the grassroots level. Dan Milton-Hine conceived the Mosman Swans in conjunction with Brett Davidson in 1999. The club, which unearthed current Swans players Callum Mills and Dan Robinson, is booming today with a growing participation base, a picturesque home ground and an enviable culture that’s attracting new kids and their families to the game.

Paul Roos Award for Best Player in the Finals (tie) – Kieren Jack and Heath Grundy

Life Membership – Anthony Cahill, Gina Keeble and Serge Beani

The Swans also unveiled their new number one ticket holder for season 2018, with media personality Deborah Hutton given the honour.