Connor Menadue says he “felt like an 18-year-old kid again” upon receiving the news he’d earned a second chance at AFL level.

North’s newest recruit was at work when his manager reached out.

“I woke up feeling excited and then was getting nervous … I was just at work at Rebel Sport Point Cook and got a phone call from my manager saying, “you’re going to get picked up”,” Menadue told SEN.  

“I started getting butterflies; I felt like I was an 18-year-old kid again. It was no different really.”

The 24-year-old played 39 games at Richmond between 2015 and 2019, before being recruited by Werribee.

With games postponed, he didn’t have the chance to impress in 2020, but Menadue had clearly shown enough previously to impress the recruiters.

“The first interest (from North) was probably two months ago,” he revealed.

“I spoke to Scott Clayton (Head of Player Personnel), just letting me know that they were a little bit interested and were keeping tabs on me.

“I caught up with Scott, Glenn (Luff) and David Noble on Monday morning and just had a chat about how I’m going with life and my footy and found out at quarter to 12 today that they were going to pick me up.

“I’m very excited.”

With five years in the AFL system, Menadue knows exactly what to expect – but he’s well aware he needs to make the most of a rare second chance at the level. 

“I’m super grateful and excited to get the opportunity,” he said.

“Already being in that environment probably gives me that little bit of an edge compared to when I was 18.

“Only a few people get the chance to play AFL, and I’m getting another opportunity. I don’t know how many more I get, so I’m trying to make this one count.

“Clearly they (the Roos) are making some changes and I’m just rapt to be a part of it.

“I see it as a big opportunity to come in and help wherever I can. I’m not looking to be a fringe or a guy who can come in for an injury … I want to play consistent, good footy and I want to help improve the team wherever I can.”

Menadue said he’d spoken with new coach David Noble, and was excited to work with such an experienced football person.

“I got along with him really well; he was very genuine, super-nice, I wasn’t intimated by him. It felt sort of like I’d met him before,” he added.