GEELONG VFL BEST AND FAIREST TIM CALLAN TRADED TO
By Ben Jensen GEELONG DEFENDER TIM CALLAN will attempt to reignite his AFL career with the Western Bulldogs in season 2008, after the Geelong Football Club confirmed the deal would be made but was not yet formalised. "The two clubs and Tim have all agreed that Tim will be playing for the Bulldogs but we havent finalised exactly what the deal will be yet", said legendary Geelong recruiting manager Stephen Wells.
Wells also confirmed no other deals had been struck, but didn't rule out letting more players go. "Tim certainly is going to another club but at the moment all the other guys were hoping will be playing at Geelong. If there is an opportunity for them at another AFL club, well then certainly well consider that."
Callan did not play an AFL game this season, but was named as an emergency as recently as the Round 22 win over Brisbane at the GABBA. Callan finishes his time at Geelong with fifteen games, after making his debut in the final round of 2003 against St Kilda, a game the Cats won. He followed this up with six games the following season, two in 2005 and another six in 2006. He did not play any finals.
Callan was recruited from the Geelong Falcons under the father-son rule after playing football at St Joseph's, his father Terry having played with the Cats in the 1960's, and memorably missed the 1963 flag through injury. A fortnight ago following Tim's best and fairest win, Terry spoke proudly of his son's achievements and club first attitude at not getting an AFL game this season.
"I was really pleased for him. He's done a fantastic job during the year; he's worked so hard and been so close to it (the senior team). Never once did he say, 'Oh, stuff it', or criticise a player or a coach. I was finding it a bit hard at times. I'd say 'Gee, you've got to be bloody close', and he'd just say, 'No, they're all good players'. His attitude has been unbelievable, and all the other kids have been the same: Brent Prismall, Charlie Gardiner, Henry Playfair, Kingy (Steven King). There's been a lot of really good players down there (VFL)."
Callan won the VFL team's Best and Fairest this season, defeating teammates, including the league Best and Fairest, JJ Liston Trophy winner James Byrne and forward Charlie Gardiner. Callan, playing mostly in the backline in a pocket or dashing off half-back, was extremely unlucky not to get any AFL action this season. His future is doubtful but should stay if offered another contract.
VFL BEST AND FAIREST TOP TEN
1 Tim Callan 139