Gold Coast SUNS key defender Caleb Graham has inked a four-year contract extension with the club until the end of 2026.

A SUNS Academy graduate originally from Cairns, Graham is into his fourth season with the club and said he was thrilled to continue to build his career at Gold Coast.

“I’ve absolutely loved my time at the club so far and was really keen to stay and continue the hard work we’ve started,” Graham said.

“We’ve got a great group of boys who are committed to each other and the club, and are focussed on the same goal.

“We’re building something really exciting here and it was a no-brainer to want to be a part of that in the future.

The 21-year-old has played an equal career-high 13 AFL matches in 2022, and 35 across his career with the club.

Playing junior football as a ruck/forward, Graham has found his true calling as a key defender at AFL level.

He often plays a lockdown role on one of the opposition’s best key forwards and ranks elite in the AFL for spoils with an average of 10.2 per game.

GC SUNS General Manager of Player Talent and Strategy Craig Cameron said Graham had taken his opportunity at AFL level.

“Caleb has shown a great work ethic over the last few seasons to develop into a reliable key defender for the team,” Cameron said.

“His hard work has seen him rewarded with regular game time this season and we see him as an important long-term player for the Gold Coast SUNS.”

Graham’s contract follows the extensions of Touk Miller, Ben King, Jack Lukosius, Connor Budarick, Mac Andrew, Elijah Hollands and Stuart Dew this year.