Melton South has landed its first big fish of the off-season after gaining the signature of former Aberfeldie Football Club star Mark Lynch.
Last month the Panthers announced the highly-decorated Brendan Fevola as its co-coach for 2017 and the inclusion of Lynch, who has won three league best and fairest medals, is another significant name coming to the club.
Lynch, who is originally from Queensland, won the 2015 Dick Reynolds Medal – the highest individual honour of the Essendon District Football League.
He was the premier midfielder of an Aberfeldie side that won the 2015 premiership without losing a match, while it made it to last year’s grand final.
Lynch also won the medal in 2012 playing for Essendon Doutta Stars. He then made the move to Heidelberg in the Northern Football League where he was again an influential figure.
After claiming the league best and fairest medal in 2014, equal with former AFL player Cameron Cloke, in controversial circumstances he was stripped of the medal.
Lynch was docked three votes in round one because of an “administrative error” but nonetheless his credentials speak volumes. Melton South co-coach Sean Triplett was rapt to have Lynch on board and said it was another great step towards bringing elite talent through the club’s doors.
“He’s got a cracking CV, he’s an absolute superstar,” Triplett said.
“(He’s got) elite work-rate, elite skills.
“At the end of the day we want to bring in elite talent. You bring in Brendan Fevola who’s probably the elite forward in Victoria then you bring in an elite midfielder, who’s one of the best midfielders in Victoria – you’re going a fair way, we’ve got a few more holes to fill which we will.”
Melton South undoubtedly has a long road to follow as it looks to return to relevance in the Ballarat Football League.
The Panthers did not win a game last year and have won just four senior matches over the past three seasons.
But Triplett said the family and country aspect of the club appealed to Lynch when making his decision.
“We’re really trying to bring the family environment to the club, the country aspect of footy really appealed to him – he’s really excited.”
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