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Thursday, January 10, 2019

West Coast Eagles flag hero Dom Sheed must stay hungry to keep spot in team

West Coast’s grand final hero Dom Sheed says his premiership-winning goal won’t be enough to keep him in the team this season and he must perform consistently to be selected.
Sheed completed a fairytale story when he went from being dropped three times throughout the year to kicking the winning goal from the boundary line in the grand final.
The 23-year-old replaced suspended star Andrew Gaff in the midfield and made the most of his opportunity, averaging 29 possessions throughout the finals.
Sheed said his finals form was deserving of a spot in the team, but last year’s displays wouldn’t be enough to earn him selection every week this season.
“I finished the year off well and I’ll take confidence from that, but footy is a funny game and it can change very quickly,” Sheed said.
“I’m only two or three bad games off being back out of the team again.
“You’ve got a whole new bunch of draftees coming into the club wanting your spot and are hungry.”
Gaff will walk straight back into the team once his suspension is completed in round three and defender Brad Sheppard (hamstring) is also set to return after missing the grand final.
Ruckman Nic Naitanui is progressing well in his return from his second knee reconstruction and the Eagles hope to have him available mid-season.
The Eagles received a timely reminder of how quickly life can change yesterday when former Collingwood defender Josh Smith ended Chris Masten’s time trial winning streak.
A noted runner while playing for the Magpies, Smith won the West Coast’s 2km time trial before Christmas, but Masten did not compete that day.
Sheed said the Eagles’ depth would make it extremely difficult to get a game each week.
“When you’re playing in a top-eight or top-four team, you are going to have players who are playing in the twos who are capable of playing at AFL level,” Sheed said.
“That’s just a reality of footy. You have to stick to it, keep your head down and try to stay focused. That’s how footy is.”
Sheed avoided surgery during the off-season and had completed all of the training requirements during the post-season and Christmas breaks.
He is out of contract at the end of this season.
He is yet to start discussing a new contract but would prefer to do a deal before the season.
“It’d be nice,” Sheed said.
“Obviously I’m no McGovern, Gaff or Lycett ... we’ll see how it plays out.”