Dockers nominate Neale, Walters and Hill for Leigh Matthews Trophy

Lachie Neale. Picture: Paul Kane/Getty Images
Lachie Neale. Picture: Paul Kane/Getty Images

THE Fremantle Dockers have put forward ball magnet Lachie Neale, classy forward Michael Walters and rebounding defender Stephen Hill as nominees for the 2016 Leigh Matthews Trophy.

The trophy is presented to the competition’s most valuable player and is voted on by the players.

Dockers star Nat Fyfe has claimed the last two awards.

Neale set an AFL record for disposals with 737 across 22 matches in 2016.

His effort was even more remarkable considering the injuries to first choice ruckman Aaron Sandilands and Brownlow Medallist Nat Fyfe.

With David Mundy and Hill playing more in defence, it was largely up to Neale to lead the charge at stoppages.

He topped 40 disposals in five games this season.

Walters led the Dockers for goals with 36, while also playing extra time in the midfield.

Hill finished second for disposals at the Dockers, averaging 25, while also topping inside 50s for the club despite a more defensive role.

Promising defender Sam Collins was put forward by the club as its best first year player, while ruckman Aaron Sandilands was nominated most courageous.

AFL Players’ Association President and retiring Docker Matthew Pavlich said the award’s winners were respected by teammates and opposition players alike.

“There are some legends of the game listed as winners of the Leigh Matthews Trophy and each year we see another outstanding footballer join the honour roll,” he said.

Awards will be presented on Tuesday.

– MVP Nominees –

Adelaide: Rory Sloane, Eddie Betts, Daniel Talia

Brisbane: Dayne Zorko, Tom Rockliff, Mitch Robinson

Carlton: Sam Docherty, Bryce Gibbs, Kade Simpson

Collingwood: Scott Pendlebury, Steele Sidebottom, Adam Treloar

Essendon: Zach Merrett, Brendon Goddard, James Kelly

Fremantle: Lachie Neale, Michael Walters, Stephen Hill

Geelong: Patrick Dangerfield, Joel Selwood, Corey Enright

Gold Coast: Tom Lynch, Steven May, Jarrod Harbrow

GWS: Stephen Coniglio, Heath Shaw, Toby Greene

Hawthorn: Patrick Dangerfield, Joel Selwood, Corey Enright

Melbourne: Jack Viney, Max Gawn, Nathan Jones

North Melbourne: Robbie Tarrant, Jack Ziebell, Daniel Wells

Port Adelaide: Robbie Gray, Jasper Pittard, Jackson Trengove

Richmond: Alex Rance, Dustin Martin, Trent Cotchin

St Kilda: Jack Steven, Nick Riewoldt, Sebastian Ross

Sydney: Josh Kennedy, Luke Parker, Dane Rampe

West Coast: Matt Priddis, Josh Kennedy, Luke Shuey

Western Bulldogs: Marcus Bontempelli, Dale Morris, Lachie Hunter