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Howlett & Merrett Re-Sign

Thursday, October 22, 2020 - 2:52 PM

Peel Thunder Captain Ben Howlett and 2020 Tuckey Medallist Jackson Merrett have both recommitted to the club for the 2021 season.

Howlett, who turned 32 yesterday will play his 4th season since returning home from a 124-game career with Essendon. Mainly deployed as a midfield bull, with a tendency to lay some heavy tackles, without the alignment with Fremantle, Howlett spent some time in the backline in 2020 adding some much-needed experience to particularly young Thunder defence. The prospect of continuing to watch these players develop made continuing an easy choice.

“Resigning with the club for 2021 has been an easy decision for myself and my family. I will be entering my 10th season with the football club and never been more excited about what lies ahead with the young talent coming through.” Howlett said.

Despite battling injury throughout the year, Howlett still managed to play every game and have a reasonably consistent season, averaging 17.4 disposals and 7.5 tackles per game. His leadership to the younger players was incredibly important throughout and continued to be an example on how to prepare and succeed at the highest level. Howlett believes that there are enough experienced and driven individuals within the club now that the club will begin to rise on-field.

“We are complimented by an experienced coach in Cam Shephard and his assistants. As Captain of the football club I am honoured to lead this group alongside a great leadership group who set high standards with a vision of making Peel Thunder a powerhouse of the competition again.” 

Former team-mate at Essendon Jackson Merrett has also signed on for a 3rd season at the Thunder after 56 games over 7 seasons at the Bombers.

Merrett, coming off an incredibly consistent season that earned him the 2020 Tuckey Medal, believes the signs of development were encouraging towards the end of the season and is confident that the sides fortunes will soon turn around.

“I’m driven by success and I truly believe we can take a giant leap forward as a side following on from last season.” Merrett said.

In what was a season of learning with a number of players getting their first exposure to senior football. Merrett believes that the talent and motivation is there in the playing group and that there’s no reason why by the end of next season the side won’t be challenging to play finals football.

“If we commit to continually improving and challenging one another to become the best players and teammates and all-round individuals then we should have no excuses come the end of 2021 to be mixing it with the best sides in the competition.”