Unlike last year, Jack Ziebell has fared well physically but the 27-year-old hasn’t completely avoided post-season medical attention.
In the coming days, the North skipper will require an arthroscope on his left knee according to GM football Cameron Joyce.
“Last season Jack was a little worse for wear and battled through various injuries, as was reported at the time. Twelve months on and he’s in great shape with only a minor meniscus issue in his knee that needs to be tidied up with some surgery,” he said.
“It’s not something that will impact Jack’s pre-season too much and isn’t too intrusive.”
Joyce said a positional change in 2018 from the midfield to the forward-line perhaps spared Ziebell the bruising and battering he received in 2017.
“We all know the way Jack throws himself around, particularly when he’s on the ball, so having him play the majority of his time forward, certainly spared him a bit I think,” Joyce said.
“His effectiveness was most pleasing however and he really took to the role even better than the high expectations we’d set.”
Ziebell managed 64 shots on goal with a return of 35.29. He also averaged 17 disposals and 5 marks ranking him up their with the most damaging smaller forwards in the game. By comparison, All-Australian squad members Jordan De Goey and Josh Caddy had the same amount of average disposals and had returns of 36.16 and 44.13 respectively.
“By anyone’s standards, Jack has had an exceptional year,” Joyce added.