Eric Kuret has capped off a blistering first year in the QAFL by taking out the Wilston Grange Best and Fairest.
Kuret, who was mercurial in the middle this year, is right at home in the discussion of the best players running around in the QAFL.
But, despite the year he had, he is as humble as they come.
“To be honest, I was embarrassed to win it. Britts [Steve Brittain] was getting tagged most weeks, so I didn’t have to deal much with that stuff, which made my life a lot easier,” he said.
Kuret, who made the move up to Queensland last summer and found a home at Bendigo Bank Oval immediately, said he never expected to win something like this first year in.
“Definitely not. I just went to Grange after moving up to Brisbane to have a kick and meet a few guys, and hopefully win a few games of football. I certainly didn’t expect this, especially with the caliber of players around the club, so I’m very humbled to win it,” he said.
“The club, and in particular Matt Trewhella made a huge effort making me welcome and making me comfortable in the environment and ensuring I was involved in the game. That was a huge help from my perspective.”
Kuret is the contested ball king. If you saw Grange this year, Kuret was the bloke with his hands on the footy first in a stoppage more often than not, spinning out of trouble before feeding a handball out.
“I think that’s probably the strength of my game, winning the ball around the contest and bringing others into the game,” he said.
Having said that, he still had to tinker with his game early on in the year.
“It definitely did take a couple of weeks to adjust. I had the benefit of playing a couple of practice matches, but I definitely did notice a difference in how the game is played compared to Melbourne. It took me three of four weeks probably.” Kuret said.
“It’s all about positioning. I felt like I was getting caught in between play a lot early in the season. I adjusted my running patterns a little, and that helped my game.”
While the Gorillas couldn’t find the knockout punch in this years finals series, going down in the prelim, Kuret believes they aren’t far off.
“I think there’s a couple of things that will help us take the next step. Based on how we finished the last couple of games, we are probably one or two good players short of matching it with Morningside and Labrador. That might be Declan Bevan coming back, or a few others guys coming back from injury,” he said.
“We also had quite a lot of young players who had really good seasons, but with another pre-season under their belt, they might be able to step up to another level.”
Kuret was touted as one of the pick-ups of the year pre-season, and he certainly didn’t disappoint.
By Andrew Wiles – @andrewjwiles