Swallow locked up with Suns until 2013 - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Swallow locked up with Suns until 2013

Laine Clark 13/12/2010 09:48:55 PM Comments (0)

As a proud West Australian, Guy McKenna knows only too well the lure for Perth kids to play AFL in their home state.

Which made WA young gun David Swallow's decision on Monday to extend his contract with McKenna's Gold Coast Suns for another 12 months all the more satisfying.

Suns coach McKenna couldn't hide his delight when he confirmed the No.1 draft pick had increased his commitment to include a third year on the glitter strip.

Swallow flew out of Perth as a 16-year-old to play with the Gold Coast - a move that paid off big time when he was the first to be snapped up by the Suns at the AFL Draft.

But former West Coast champion McKenna admitted he was still wary that returning home may prove too tempting for the WA youngster.

"He's a West Australian and home is home - we know that is one of our greatest challenges," McKenna said on Monday.

"We don't want this to be his second home - this has to become his home."

But McKenna hoped young guns such as Swallow learned the same lessons on the Gold Coast as he did during his glory days with the West Coast Eagles.

"Extensions of contracts, money and all that aside, ultimately it is about being part of a successful group," he said.

"At West Coast we were in the finals for 10 years.

"A lot of blokes took sacrifices.

"They had opportunities to go elsewhere but decided to stay because it is about winning and being part of a successful group."

Swallow may have had his contract extended without even playing a game but McKenna said he had already seen enough to keep him until the end of the 2013 season.

While his skills at VFL level ensured a strong showing in the JJ Liston Trophy for the best and fairest player this year, Swallow's work ethic was what impressed McKenna the most.

"He was one of the youngest on our list last year so to have the season that he had (in VFL) he obviously has a bright future," McKenna said.

"But to have one of your youngest kids come on and actually get taken off training on a Wednesday because he is doing too much says a lot - he set a magnificent example."

Swallow was happy to have locked up his short term future.

"I'm now going to be here beyond next year so I'm rapt," he told the Suns website.

"It (pre-season training) is definitely a step up from last year that's for sure but it's going really well.

"They're really pushing us hard but that how it's got to be if we're going to be ready for next year."

AAP lc/gc

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