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Season review: Taylor Duryea

hawthornfc.com.au  November 4, 2015 11:00 AM

Season Review: Duryea Watch highlights from Taylor Duryea's 2015 season.
2015 Toyota AFL Grand Final - Hawthorn v West Coast

Taylor Duryea in action during the grand final.

In brief

AFL matches: 22

Disposals per game: 17.8

Marks per game: 7.1

Goals: 6

VFL matches: 1

Review

TAYLOR Duryea continued to grow his reputation as a reliable rebounding defender for the Hawks in 2015, producing his best season to date.

It took Duryea four years as a Hawk to make his AFL debut, but since then he has missed just nine games.

The 24-year-old is now a dual premiership player with 63 senior games to his name.

After starting as the substitute in last year’s grand final triumph, Duryea enhanced his standing as one of the Hawks’ rising stars with a superb 2015 finals series.

He started as the substitute in the Hawks’ qualifying final loss to West Coast Eagles, but returned to the 21 for the team’s semi final against Adelaide Crows.

Duryea had an impact against the Crows, collecting 22 disposals, but it was his preliminary final and grand final performances that stood out.

His 26-disposal, 10-mark effort against Fremantle was arguably his best senior performance, capped off with a stunning final quarter goal to seal the Hawks’ fourth consecutive grand final berth.

On the big stage, Duryea fired again, tallying another 26 disposals - while spending time marking dangerous Eagles Mark Le Cras and Luke Shuey - to be among the Hawks’ best performances on the final day of the season.

Duryea said playing a full game in this year’s decider was a thrill.

“Last year I was the sub and I was thankful to get that role, and this year obviously to play in the starting 21 was another step above,” he said in the rooms post-match.

“Just to be part of this great team is so humbling, and I’m thankful for the opportunity every time I play for this great club.”

Duryea started his career as a lock-down player, but the courageous defender has continued to develop and took his rebounding and ball-winning ability to new levels in 2015.

He averaged almost 18 disposals per game while ranking first at the Hawks for rebound 50s (3.3 per game) and third for marks (7.1 per game).

On five occasions in 2015, Duryea tallied 25 or more disposals, and in total he played 22 of 26 games this year.

After signing a two-year contract extension in August, the Hawks hope Duryea can continue to improve his game and be an important team member going forward.

GM - Football Operations Chris Fagan says...

“Arguably, outside of Sam Mitchell he was probably one of our best performers in the finals series this year,” Fagan said.

“Whilst he was rapt to be a premiership player last year, he was the sub in the grand final, but this year he probably fully feels like he belongs because he was selected in the starting 21 and played an outstanding grand final.

“He’s taken his game to another level in 2015.

“Previously, he was a pretty good stopper, but now his intercept marking, spoiling, his ability to win the ball and rebound off half back has picked up as well.

“The great thing about him is he continues to improve as a player, which is what matters most to us.”

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