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The early Hawk gets the worm

Day three for number 33 Mat Walker reflects on his first year in the brown and gold and sets news goals for the upcoming 2020 season.

For some Hawks, it’s week one of pre-season. For others, they’re out enjoying their last few weeks of freedom before turning their focus to the club’s 2020 campaign.

While it is technically only the first to fourth year Hawks who are required on the training track this week, several other familiar faces have been popping up around Waverley.

Recruits Jonathon Patton and Sam Frost are making the most of the opportunity to get to know their new teammates, despite not officially starting their pre-season programs until the 18th of November.

Read: Lewis' recipe for a breakout season

Tom Mitchell has been a regular at the Ricoh Centre throughout the off-season. After missing the Hawks’ 2019 campaign with a broken leg, the 2018 Brownlow Medallist is leaving no stone unturned in his pursuit of a return to full fitness in 2020.

New father James Frawley was back into the program on Monday, despite heading into his 14th AFL season, while sixth-year James Sicily also got the jump on his competition and is yet to miss a session.

Fans may be surprised to see recently-delisted Darren Minchington out on the track; Minchington has been invited to train on with the Hawks across the course of the pre-season, in the hope of winning a return to the playing list in 2020. 

Other senior players to have made an early appearance include Chad Wingard, Tim O’Brien, Dan Howe and Jonathon Ceglar.

And though they’re yet to re-join their teammates at the Ricoh Centre, a group of experienced Hawks have been spotted getting in an extra circuit session at Liam Shiels’ gym (pictured below).

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Hendo feels.

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The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs