Brad Cox-Goodyer credits North Launceston Football Club for shaping his life in a positive way.
The 25-year-old first joined the club as an under-9s junior and aside from a brief stint with Geelong West in 2015, York Park has been an important home-away-from home ever since.
On Saturday, Cox-Goodyer will run out in his 150th senior match against Tigers at Kingston’s Twin Ovals – earning automatic Northern Bombers life membership.
“It’s something I have been thinking about for a while, to get a life membership at such a great club with great history is a great honour,” the three-time premiership player said.
“This is my 10th year of senior football and so the club has been part of my life for 16 or 17 years.
“Over that time you build relationships and create life-long friendships with who after footy you’re still going to remain mates with. It’s been a massive part of my life.”
Cox-Goodyer, who took over the captaincy from coach Taylor Whitford this season, had a standout year in 2017. He won a maiden Jack Hill Medal to go with the State League’s Alastair Lynch and Darrel Baldock medals for an eight-goal haul in North’s 87-point premiership victory over Lauderdale at UTAS Stadium.
It was easily his best individual season to date, with another career highlight coming in 2015 when he played in the Northern Bombers’ grand final win alongside brother Andrew.
“I have learnt a lot this year as captain and it’s been a big building block for me as a person away from the footy club,” the Tasmanian representative said.
“When I reflect on what I was like when I first started at the club I guess I wasn’t the ideal player or person, but to build into being given the opportunity to captain the senior club has been a massive step not just in football but myself personally.”
Cox-Goodyer is yet to recapture those great heights on a consistent basis this year with some niggling soft tissue injuries interrupting his preparation and movement.
He hurt his groin in last year’s decider, missed round 2 this year with a hamstring complaint and was left out in round 5 with general soreness.
“It was the first time I’d done a soft tissue injury and I was sort of novice the way I went about it. I felt alright and I pushed through it but it never got any better,” he said.
“I really set myself back a long way so obviously I’m not going to reach any great heights individually this year but that is fine as long as I can build and have a really strong second half of the year to help the team.”
The reigning premiers are not playing to their full potential but with the Tigers (A), Glenorchy (A), Clarence (H), North Hobart (A), a bye and Lauderdale (A) on the run home, it gives them a good chance to hold on to or extend their stranglehold on top spot.
“As a group we are building and not playing our best footy at the moment, but last year we were playing similar footy about the same time – we weren’t setting the house on fire but still getting the results,” he said.