When James Evans was given number 21 to wear for Daylesford as a teenager, it was a special moment.
Club legend Steve Cowan had previously donned it for something like 350 games.
The last thing on Evans' mind at the time was the possibility that he would also go on to wear the number in a similar number of games.
That is exactly what the 38-year-old has done though.
Evans lines up for his 300th appearance as a senior-listed player for Daylesford against Ballan in front of a home crowd in the Central Highlands Football League on Saturday.
"To think two players have worn 21 (back-to-back) for almost 700 games - it's fantastic"
And there is more to come with the valued member of the Bulldogs' senior line-up having no intention of hanging up the boots.
His days in the seniors might be getting close to an end, but Evans is keen to provide some leadership in the reserves over coming years.
"I'd like to help out and perhaps have a role which helps them get into finals. Our reserves haven't had a lot of success."
Evans made his senior debut for Daylesford, then known as the Demons, under coach Tim Beacham in the Ballarat Football League in 2004.
All but one or two games since have been in the seniors.
Daylesford contested an elimination final in his debut year, but within two years it had left the BFL and was in the CHFL.
Evans said the move was financially driven.
"Increasing costs, not being able to pay players big money, an ageing list. It got too hard in the BFL."
While in its time in the BFL, Daylesford won just one premiership (1961), it was not long before it became a force in the CHFL with Evans part of it.
The Bulldogs won three premierships in quick time - in 2007, 2009 and 2012 - while playing in six grand finals in a row.
Evans' contribution in this era - he was one of seven to play in all three premierships - resulted in him being named in Daylesford's team of the decade 2006-2015.
Evans said he remained as motivated as ever as a player.
"I enjoy the fitness aspect of it. It also breaks up the week, training and having a kick with mates."
He believes the enforced breaks in the sport caused by COVID-19 in 2020 and 2021 had reinforced the importance of getting back and staying involved from a fitness and health perspective.
While he is not sure whether the interruptions had lengthened his playing career, he said it had certainly taken the past few pre-seasons much more seriously.
Evans said he owed much to his wife Megan, with her support making it possible to meet the commitments of commuting between Ballarat to Daylesford to train and play.
Also on the family front, Evans is not ruling out the possibility of one day playing beside at least one of his three sons.
It is a big call given his eldest is eight, but he said he was not prepared to rule out perhaps getting in a few games when he was 45.
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