James Worpel continued to develop as one of the club’s key cornerstones of the future in 2020. Off the back of his Peter Crimmins Medal winning year, Worpel was forced to deal with increased attention and scrutiny from opposition sides. But, still just 21 years of age, the midfielder rose to the challenge, with his form improving the longer the year went on. As his break-out year in 2019 came whilst Tom Mitchell was on the sidelines, Worpel had an important year building his relationship and connection with the 2018 Brownlow Medallist as well as with the likes of Jaeger O’Meara and Liam Shiels. Worpel’s effort and intent could never be questioned and his on-field desperation was obvious as he averaged more tackles than any other Hawk. The Geelong Falcons product’s season was unfortunately cut short when he injured his shoulder in the side’s Round 16 loss to St Kilda. The injury required surgery but his rehabilitation was completed in time for day one of pre-season. Still yet to play 50 games at senior level, the development and improvement that is to come in Worpel’s game ought to be a source of much excitement throughout the Hawthorn faithful.
0 (2020) 10 (career)
Pick 45, 2017 NAB AFL Draft
CIE (Platinum), Commercial Systems Australia (Silver)
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