Nat Fyfe has erased some of the disappointment of Fremantle's exit from the AFL finals by winning the 2015 Brownlow Medal.Fyfe claimed the AFL's fairest and best award after a dominant season for the Dockers, illustrated by the fact he polled 26 of a possible 30 votes between rounds four and 14.
He eventually collected 31 votes, with West Coast's 2014 Brownlow Medal winner Matt Priddis runner-up with 28.
The 24-year-old Fyfe is the first player to be judged best-afield by the umpires nine times during a season.
He roared to a tally of 29 votes from his first 13 matches, more votes than any other player received all night.
The popular Fyfe, who received his medal from Gold Coast captain and dual Brownlow Medal winner Gary Ablett, said he was nervous as the votes were announced.
"I'm a bit blown away to be honest," Fyfe said.
"It's greater than me, it's the Fremantle footy club and all our members and fans and supporters.
It's greater than me, it's the Fremantle footy club and all our members and fans and supporters. We can take this home and really celebrate it as a club and as a community.Nat Fyfe
Fyfe is the first Docker to win the award.
He paid tribute to Priddis, to whom he finished runner-up last year, though Fyfe was ineligible.
Fyfe played through injury in the second half of the season, missing four of the last six matches.
He emerged for the finals series and played with a fractured fibula in Friday night's preliminary final loss to Hawthorn at Subiaco Oval.
It meant he was parked on 31 votes for the last six rounds, anxiously waiting to see if Priddis, Mitchell or anyone else would run him down.
"I wouldn't advise doing it to anyone," Fyfe said.
"The last few days have been a whirlwind ... until I really sat down and the vote got under way, I didn't really put much thought into it, to be honest.
"But the nerves started to come late."
Fyfe's tally of 31 votes is the third-highest haul in the modern era, behind Dane Swan's 34 in 2011 and Robert Harvey in 1998, who polled 32.
In other awards, Nic Naitanui of the West Coast Eagles took out the mark of the year for his spectacular leap against Geelong in round nine.