Fremantle Dockers recruit Jordan Clark on his relationship with Geelong and the role he wants at his new club
Three years after landing at Kardinia Park as a prized first-round draft pick, Jordan Clark is ready to start again with Fremantle next season after a his promising initiation spluttered as he was caught on the outer at Geelong.
Having impressed in 18 games before injury ended his 2019 debut season, Clark got on the field just 11 more times over the past two seasons and is eager to relaunch his career in purple as the confident youngster he once was.
“I like to run and carry and break lines and just take the game on really. That’s something that I want to get back to,” he said.
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“I’ve found over the last year and a bit I was a bit down on confidence at times and I just want to get back to how I was day one and not worry about making errors.
“Personally I prefer playing off half-back, but I also don’t mind playing on the wing as well. It’s a role I’ve done a lot at the Cats and I feel like I’ve grown in that area. But I love playing off half-back.”
Clark, who turns 21 on Saturday, played down speculation about frayed relationships at the Cats, including with former assistant Matthew Scarlett, and said he didn’t hang up on recruiting boss Stephen Wells this week amid tense trade negotiations.
He said he had a strong relationship with captain Joel Selwood in particular and would have returned to the Cats, where he was contracted for 2022, if the clubs had not agreed to a deal on Wednesday.
“Certainly that thought does cross your mind at times, especially when it’s such a long period and you get to the last day and not much has happened,” Clark said.
“It got beat up a little bit that I was not going back (if the trade didn’t go through), but I just wanted to clear that up that it definitely wasn’t the case.
“I would have gone back and same thing as I’d be doing now is getting back to work there and trying to set myself up for a big year next year.
“I’ve got no hard feelings towards Geelong. I’m very grateful for the opportunity they gave me the past three years and I’ve loved my time there. In a way it is sad to go as well.”
The Albany and Claremont product said his time at Geelong had been a learning curve and it had been frustrating missing all 10 finals the Cats played through injury or being overlooked.
“Obviously it’s footy and things happen,” he said.
“My role at the Cats changed a fair bit and I had a few nasty injuries. One to my elbow and shoulder.
“I was young and still getting a good grasp on a professional environment at that age. I’ve definitely learnt a lot the last three years.
“They brought in some blokes last year and the year before that who are some very good players and played some good AFL football and it’s always going to be tough as a young fella to try and compete with those blokes who are in their prime.
“I’m excited to get to work and get in front of a fresh set of eyes and put my best foot forward.”
Having grown up a West Coast supporter, it’s a bright future with Fremantle Clark is now anticipating.
“It’s exciting looking at the young core group that’s coming through, he said.
“I just thought it’s really exciting and I want to be a part of it as well. That was probably one of the (attractions) for me and seeing their improvement over the last two years and hopefully it can keep progressing.
“I wouldn’t have made this decision if I didn’t think it was a good move for me. I’m rapt to be back around my family and my friends and there’s always something to be said playing footy where you’re happy around your family and friends.”
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