A re-signed trio of youngsters will only benefit from another pre-season, according to North Melbourne GM Football, Brady Rawlings.
Phoenix Spicer has put pen to paper on a one-year contract extension, which will see him at Arden St until at least the end of 2023.
Spicer was selected by North Melbourne with pick 42 in the 2020 NAB AFL Draft, with his Round 23 debut seeing him become the Roos’ fifth first-year player to debut in 2021.
“Phoenix has put in a lot of hard work this year, both at training and in the VFL, which was ultimately rewarded with a debut,” Rawlings said.
“He has explosive pace and plays with a bit of edge, which we find really attractive. We look forward to seeing him continue to develop in our football program.
“He faced some time on the sidelines due to injury this year too, so we’re excited to see what he can do with an uninterrupted run.”
Meanwhile, rookies Pat Walker and Matt McGuinness have also re-signed for another year, locked in until the end of 2022.
Another player who has just completed his first season at AFL level, Walker was selected with the second pick at the 2020 Rookie Draft, from North Hobart.
Although he's yet to debut at senior level, Rawlings says Walker’s improvement across the season had been encouraging.
“Pat was really starting to hit is his stride in the back-end of the season in the VFL and was very close to an opportunity at AFL level,” Rawlings said.
“He is an elite kick and reads the play really well. We feel with another pre-season under his belt, he will be able to reach new heights next year.”
A Next Generation Academy product from Lauderdale, Tasmania, McGuinness’ 2021 was interrupted by injury.
But Rawlings says he’s showing promise in his on-field development.
“Matt has shown continuous improvement. Unfortunately for him, he’s also endured a couple of injury setbacks, but we look forward to continuing to work with him next season.”
The signings of Spicer, Walker and McGuinness follow the recent extensions and re-signings of Aaron Hall, Josh Walker, Aiden Bonar, Will Phillips, Tom Powell, Charlie Lazzaro and Ben McKay.