AS soon as the family of Perth Demon Aidan Tropiano found out he had won the 2015 Sandover Medal, they decided to jump in the car at 2am and drive from their home in Mullewa to Perth.
The Belmont resident celebrated his Sandover Medal win in style, winning the count by one vote ahead of South Fremantle’s Ashton Hams.
Aidan’s parents Tony and Anita watched the count online, with Aidan expected to poll well after an outstanding season in which he won the Butcher Medal as Perth’s best and fairest.
When they found out he had won, Tony and Anita went to bed, got two hours sleep and then drove more than 500km from Mullewa to Perth.
“I didn’t even have a conversation until they were in the car,” Tropiano said of his parents’ visit.
“They just said they are in the car and will meet us in the morning and I am very thankful for it.”
The count was one of the most thrilling in recent history. Tropiano led for most of the night, but was challenged by Hams and Subiaco’s Sam Menegola.
Hams led with one round to go, with Tropiano taking the win by polling four votes on the second last vote read out on the night.
The 23-year-old’s win came despite Perth winning just two games and coming last on the WAFL ladder. Not only was the Sandover Medal a special night for Aidan, it was also his 23rd birthday.
He said people could not understand how special it was to wear the medal.
“It was a massive honour; you don’t understand how much it means to a person. It is quite small (the medal) but very prestigious,” he said.
“I don’t want to take it off.”