Werribee Football Club’s off season momentum continues to build, with a new signing and the return of two players confirmed in the past week.
After recently securing Jake Sharp and Matthew Munro, Werribee last week announced the signing of former Western Bulldog small forward Andrew Hooper from North Ballarat, as well as the re-signing of Ryley Barrack and Dom Brew, for 2018.
The season will be the Tigers’ first as a stand-alone VFL club in 19 years.
Hooper, 26, joins the club after the Roosters were stripped of their VFL licence for 2018.
He said the certainty offered by Werribee was welcome.
“It’s very exciting to sign with Werribee for next year,” he said.
“I’m really looking forward to my next adventure at Werribee in 2018 and being with a new group and not being aligned with an AFL club. It’s an exciting time for Werribee and an exciting time for me.”
Hooper played seven AFL games with the Bulldogs between 2010-12.
His decorated VFL career includes
94 games and 156 goals with the Roosters and Williamstown, as well as VFL team of the year and state team honours in 2015 and 2017 respectively.
He has also spent two seasons playing with Glenelg in the South Australian National Football League.
Barrack, 21, and Brew, 20, were two of the break-out stars for the Tigers this year. Barrack reinvented himself as a rebounding defender this year to great effect. He was named in the best players in 13 of his 16 senior appearances this season.
“To be honest, I didn’t imagine having the year I had,” he said.
“I just put my head down, had a good pre-season, punched from behind and let whatever happened happen.
“I can’t wait to get into pre-season and put my best foot forward.
“We’re stand-alone now, so it will be the same group of boys around each other 24/7. It will be like a second home.”
Brew’s intensity at the contest will be a welcome sight again next year for the Werribee faithful, with the midfielder hoping to maintain his average of 15.7 tackles a game.
“I’m pretty rapt with the club,” he said. “They’ve shown me a lot of respect and helped me a lot this year. I owe them a fair bit, so I can’t be happier.
“Some blokes bring their elite goal-kicking or racking up a lot of possessions, but my tackling and my attack on the ball are the two things I try to bring every week.”