The contract signing frenzy has continued at the Holden Centre, with Travis Varcoe, Tom Phillips and Ben Crocker all inking new deals to remain at Collingwood.
The trio with varying skillsets and levels of experience will all be in Black and White in 2018, with Phillips and Crocker also committing to remain at the club until the end of 2019.
General Manager of List Management Derek Hine believes the three new re-signings adds further structure to a Collingwood list which is quickly settling.
“We’re thrilled to have Travis, Tom and Ben committing to the club for next season,” Hine told Collingwood Media.
“All three have proven their talent on the field and add to a long list of re-signings as we look towards improving our list ahead of 2018.”
A one-year deal for Varcoe puts the former Geelong premiership player in the frame to become a 200-gamer if he remains fit next season. Currently, only Scott Pendlebury, Daniel Wells and Steele Sidebottom offer more experience than the 29-year-old.
Injuries cruelled the 2017 season for the damaging utility. Varcoe was restricted by hamstring and elbow injuries, as well as a one-match suspension, as he was kept to just eight home and away season games.
A strong pre-season campaign should see him return to his full potential early in the upcoming season.
“While Tom and Ben are emerging players, Travis’ value comes through a wealth of winning experience. We hope we’ll have him injury-free and sharing that experience on the field next year,” Hine said.
Travis Varcoe’s time at Collingwood will extend to a fourth season in 2018. Image: AFL Photos.
In Phillips and Crocker, Collingwood have two committed young runners eager to cement their places as regular starters in 2018 and beyond.
The former Oakleigh Chargers’ teammates joined the Magpies just seven picks apart in the 2016 National Draft. Crocker beat Phillips to an AFL debut and played 10 games in his first season in Black and White, before adding another three despite ankle injuries in 2017.
There was no case of second-year blues for Phillips, who received league-wide recognition through an AFL Rising Star nomination in round nine against Hawthorn.
The elite runner settled in the side and has now played 24 games in his first two seasons.
“I couldn’t have been picked by a better side,” Phillips told Glenn McFarlane of the Herald Sun.
“It’s a great club, the facilities are incredible, and I couldn’t be happier here.”
The trio of signings join a number of teammates who have committed to the Magpies for 2018 and beyond. Brodie Grundy, Mason Cox and Tyson Goldsack have all re-signed with the club in the last month, with more expected to join in the coming weeks.
Source: Collingwood FC’s website