Matt Rowell’s strong start to the 2023 is catching the eye of many, including Senior Coach Stuart Dew.
Rowell was absolutely everywhere in the SUNS 19-point win over Geelong on Sunday, winning plenty of the ball at the coalface and just as importantly distributing well on the outside.
He recorded 18 contested possessions, a game-high in the facet for the second time already this season, but his output goes well beyond numbers on the spreadsheet.
“It’s a disservice if you just look at his stats. His will to win and his competitive nature is just unbelievable,” Dew said post-match on Sunday.
“I’m seeing a complete midfielder getting a mix of inside and outside ball.
“If any young mids are watching TV, go and have a look at his first three weeks and how he goes about it.”
More than two-thirds of his possessions came under pressure against the Cats, a figure not matched by anyone else on the field.
On the back of 2022 in which he played every game following an injury-riddled opening to his young career, Dew says Rowell’s only going to get better.
“Every touch is earned, it’s quality and he’s really getting that inside and outside mix,” Dew added.
“I’m really proud of the way he’s playing. He nearly got us over the line last week (against Essendon).
“You know what he’s going to give every week. He’s fit, strong and he’s only going to get better.
The SUNS next face the undefeated Saints at Marvel Stadium on Saturday night and won’t be resting on their laurels.
“We know this competition, it’s unrelenting. We have to dust ourselves off and get back on it. The Saints are 3-0 so they’ll be up an about.”