Stefan Martin finally cracked his first AFL Finals Series in 2019 after twelve seasons in the AFL, and the formidable ruckman certainly proved that he belonged.
Martin was a force to be reckoned with in the 2019 AFL Finals Series. He had a season-high 23 disposals, including 16 kicks and seven handballs, alongside 24 hitouts against the GIANTS in the Lions Semi-Final loss. It only took one week for Stef to pass his previous season high, occurring against the Tigers in the Qualifying Final. In that game, the ruckman had 17 disposals, five marks, four tackles and 24 hitouts.
Fittingly, Martin was rewarded for his heroic efforts in the AFL Finals Series with the “Finals Player of the Year” award at the Brisbane Lions Club Champion event.
Stef’s most dominant game in the ruck for 2019 occurred when the Lions travelled to GIANTS stadium in Round 16, where he had a massive 52 hitouts. Ultimately, he would finish the year fifth in the AFL for total hitouts.
The 199cm ruckman also had a stellar performance against the Sydney Swans in Round 7, where he earned 33 hit-outs, 21 disposals and four tackles. The Lions would go onto beat the Swans for the first time in a decade.
The 32-year-old’s position with the Lions was solidified when he secured a one-year extension with the Club for 2020 earlier this year.
“This year is completely different to any other year I’ve ever experienced,” he said in his press conference making the announcement.
“It’s just unreal to know that I’ll be around and know that I can keep working hard as we continue to go from strength to strength.”
If all things are running smoothly for Stef in 2020, Martin will be set to play his 200th game, currently sitting on 182.