AFL Trade News: Luke Jackson admits meeting with Fremantle leaders in season as dockers pay heavy price for ‘unicorn’

Award-winning AFL recruit Luke Jackson has set his sights on helping Fremantle land his first premiership after a deal from Melbourne to the Dockers was finally finalized.

Fremantle gave up its first-round pick that year — currently No. 13 pick — as well as its 2023 first- and second-round picks in exchange for Jackson, No. 44 pick and No. 67 pick.

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Jackson’s prowess in the ruck, on the ground and forward has described him as a football unicorn and Fremantle hope he will be the missing piece they need to win the club’s first Premier League.

The 21-year-old played a key role in Melbourne’s 2021 flag campaign, with a notable effort in the big finals win over the Western Bulldogs.

The childhood Dockers fan is well acquainted with Fremantle’s quest for success and he’s determined to be part of a new chapter that wins the flag.

“Hopefully we can bring a flag to Fremantle. The first would be pretty nice,” Jackson said in his first interview as a Docker on Monday.

“With a young core and all the really good players who are really success-oriented, hopefully I can fit right in there.

“I think every team plays to win and if it was next year (which we won) it would be unreal.

“There’s still a lot of hard work ahead of us, but it’s good to work towards.”

Jackson met with both West Coast and Fremantle during Farewell Week this year and was impressed by both clubs.

But the pitch from Dockers coach Justin Longmuir and football boss Peter Bell — as well as the age demographics of the player group — proved too hard to resist.

Could his “unicorn” tag resonate with the fans?

“Maybe we’ll see some of them in the crowd,” Jackson joked.

“I hadn’t thought much about the unicorn, but it sounds nice.”

With swingman Griffin Logue traded to North Melbourne and spearhead Rory Lobb still has a chance to join the Western Bulldogs, Jackson is expected to put in significant stints up front.

Jackson has 16 goals in 2021 but just 11 last season and he is determined to improve his forward craft.

Luke Jackson is joining Fremantle after his AFL trade was confirmed on Monday. (Dave Hunt/AAP PHOTOS) Recognition: AAP

“I have tons to learn[to do],” he said.

“It’s more natural for me to play in the middle but I’m really looking forward to working with the forward coaches and the forwards up there and building my game.”

Jackson’s Ruck partnership with Sean Darcy will prove crucial to Fremantle’s flag hopes.

There have been doubts as to whether the two can thrive together, but Jackson is confident the pair will complement one another, much like he did with champion Ruckman Max Gawn in Melbourne.

“I’ve met Sean a couple of times, and we both talked about how good it could possibly be,” Jackson said.

“I think he’ll be able to help me in that jerk area, and maybe I can help him in that ground-level stuff.”–c-8503527 AFL Trade News: Luke Jackson admits meeting with Fremantle leaders in season as dockers pay heavy price for ‘unicorn’

James Brien

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