Wright to bring up game 350

Jackson Wright. (Anthony Villani)

Tara Murray

When Taylors Lakes returns to the football field, defender Jackson Wright will join a unique club, stepping out onto the field for his 350th career game.

Having started playing football for the Lions as a nine-year-old, Wright joined just a handful of players at the club to have played 350 games.

Wright said he never imagined playing that many games when he started playing.

“I don’t really look too far into the future,” he said. “I never thought I would play 350 games.

“It’s an exclusive club and there are not many others at the club to have reached this mark, it’s definitely pretty special.

“I played a bit of footy with a few of those other guys.”

Wright said the club has played a major role in his life. He started playing in under-10s and has been a key to the senior team for more than a decade.

He won the club’s senior best and fairest in 2015 and was named in the Essendon District Football League team of the year the same year.

He said it was his mates that kept seeing him coming back.

“I’ve been here about 22 years,” he said. “It’s definitely been a major part of my life.

“I just get to hang out with my mates on a Saturday looking to get a win. Even with training, you get to see mates a couple of times a week and get to hang out with them.”

Wright said the major on-field highlight of his career was the 2010 EDFL B grade premiership, the club’s only senior premiership.

“I had never played in a premiership in juniors,” he said.

“I just remember the whole year we had a really close team. We were underdogs even though we were on top of the ladder.

“We had a chip on our shoulders and had a point to prove. It was a champion team against a team of champions.”

Wright’s milestone is a bright highlight in what has been a tough year for the senior team. They are winless and are facing relegation.

Wright admits it has been a tough year, but said there are some bright signs for the future.

“The results aren’t going our way at the moment,” he said.

“I think we had 10 players 20 and under in one of our games this year.

“There are some exciting signs. A lot of these guys can play at this level already, even though they are quite young.

“We’re not carrying them.”

Wright said he would make a decision on his playing future at the end of the season, saying it would likely depend on how his body feels.

He made one thing clear though.

“I don’t see myself playing anywhere else.”