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Player Reviews: Mayes and Close

Player Review: Mayes & Close Sam Mayes was instrumental this season down back while Michael Close showed his strength up forward.

#32 Sam Mayes

Sam Mayes was another great example of a Brisbane Lions player who improved greatly under Chris Fagan’s coaching in 2017.

Playing in all bar one match for the year, Mayes averaged 21 disposals and 6 marks a match, considerably up on his figures from his previous four seasons with the Lions.  

Mayes’ best match of the season came in the Lions' thumping victory over Fremantle in Round 12 when he collected a career-high 29 disposals and took the ball inside 50 six times.

Luke Hodge’s likely arrival at the Lions next season will be a great asset for Mayes as he seeks to continue improving and establish himself as one of the competition’s elite half-backs. 

Senior matches: 21, NEAFL matches: 0

#33 Michael Close

Michael Close was unable to cement a consistent spot in the Senior side in 2017, playing 10 matches at the top level and 13 in the NEAFL.

Close started the season off in the Senior side, kicking a goal and grabbing six touches in the Round 1 victory over the SUNS.

The key forward kicked eight goals in his 10 games at the Senior level, while also averaging 8.9 disposals and 3.5 marks.

In his 13 NEAFL matches, Close kicked 19 goals and was always a big presence up forward. 

Close played a big role in the Lions NEAFL side’s premiership success over the Swans.

Senior matches: 10, NEAFL matches: 13

View previous Player Reviews:

Player Reviews: Keays, Christensen, Bastinac and Robinson

Player Reviews: McCluggage, Bell and Bewick

Player Review: Harris Andrews

Player Review: Eric Hipwood 

Player Reviews: Hanley, Berry, Walker

Player Review: Dayne Zorko  

Player Review: Dayne Beams

Player Reviews: Beam, Robertson, Cox

Player Reviews: Skinner, Paparone, Schache and Dawson

Player Review: Dan McStay

Player Reviews: Cutler, Gardiner and Witherden

Player Review: Daniel Rich

Player Review: Stefan Martin

Player Review: Ryan Lester

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs