Port Adelaide has signed new deals with three out-of-contract young players.
Hamish Hartlett, Robbie Gray and Paul Stewart have all recommitted to the club.
Power Football Operations Manager Peter Rohde says that the club is delighted to have re-signed three key young players.
“Without doubt, Gray, Hartlett and Stewart are all very important young players and will form a key part of our team in the future,” Rohde said.
“The fact that all three have signed in the current environment with two new franchises set to enter the AFL is very positive for our club and sends a clear message that they see a healthy future here at Port Adelaide.
“Hamish and Paul are local talents who have progressed well through our system and Robbie was a late draft pick who has quickly established himself as a highly rated player.”
Hartlett, 19, has played 14 games since debuting for the Power last year against Hawthorn at the MCG. The silky mover is Port Adelaide’s highest ever draft pick – no. 4 – after being recruited from West Adelaide at the 2008 AFL Draft.
Hartlett says that he is thrilled to sign on at Port Adelaide.
“It was a very easy decision to re-sign here at Port Adelaide,” Hartlett said. “We’ve got a strong core group of young players who continue to develop and are very keen to take this club forward.
“I’ve built some great relationships here at the Power and to be able to stay here in Adelaide with my family is an added bonus.”
Gray, 22, has played 40 games with the Power and kicked 62 goals since debuting in 2007. He was recruited from the Oakleigh Chargers as a 4th round selection – pick no.55 overall – in the 2006 AFL Draft.
Gray was initially the subject of media speculation about his future, but says that the decision to stay at Port Adelaide was pretty easy in the end.
“I’m very settled here in Adelaide and have really enjoyed my first few seasons here at the Power,” said Gray. “We have an exciting young list that is eager to play finals football and I certainly want to be a part of that.
“The club picked me late in the draft and put a lot of time in developing me as a player and I am very thankful of that.”
Stewart, 23, has played 28 games for Port Adelaide since debuting in 2008. He was recruited from Woodville-West Torrens as a 2nd round selection – pick no.23 overall – in the 2006 AFL Draft.
Stewart, who grew up as a Port Adelaide supporter, is very pleased to be staying at Alberton.
“It’s really exciting to have re-signed with the club,” Stewart said.
“We have a great young group at the moment and I’m very confident that we’re heading in the right direction as a club. All the coaches have had great faith in me and I’m looking forward to repaying that faith.”