A local government administrator by day and a leading AFL fantasy coach by night, Launceston's Jon Harmey had a season many would envy.
Finishing second in the AFL's official fantasy competition where participants receive a salary and buy players who then receive points based on their performance, Harmey led the way for two months before succumbing the lead in the second last day of the season.
"The person who was in second took a high-risk approach and went all in for the last round while I played conservatively," he said.
"Max Gawn had an injury cloud over him so I traded him out because I couldn't afford a zero but they held him and he got 150 points.
"They also brought in Jeremy Cameron from GWS, who hadn't played in a few weeks with an injury and after having two goals at half-time, I thought it was alright but I was watching that game and just saw my season slipping away because he kicked nine goals."
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Sitting the year out of local touch football competition due to an ankle reconstruction, Harmey admits he's had a fair bit of time on his hands to allocate to his side but still believes a fair bit of luck is needed to sit at the top level.
"You do need a lot of luck to take it out. Anyone who has finished well would say that as well.
"Those top 10 teams must have really put a lot of effort in and must have been pretty focused on it."
Picking up $10,000 for his troubles, an official fantasy hat with his position emblazoned on the side as well as grand final tickets to be shared with a Richmond supporter mate, the coach of Hirdy's Heroes listed a trade involving a young Tigers superstar as his best for the season.
"One of my best was Sydney Stack, who has gained a fair bit of popularity this year, to Jack Macrae. So I've brought in a guy who was worth $170,000 at the start of the season and I've traded him straight across to Macrae who started the season at $900,000.
"So that's a really good example of buying someone cheap and then riding the wave of getting their price go up."
Getting into fantasy football with a group of work mates 15 years ago, this season wasn't even Harmey's first bite at the golden cherry, with a sixth-placed finish in 2017 his previous best result.
"It was very different and I enjoyed 2017 a lot more because instead of being the person out the front that everyone was chasing after, I was the other way and could take all the risks and if they paid off, I looked like a genius.
"There's no real secret to it I guess, the people who are going to be successful are those who keep an eye on the statistics, watch quite a few of the games and have an interest in who's going well and who's not."
Describing the competition as "a bit of a gamble", it seems Harmey should become a betting man - defeating 146,508 other coaches on his way to second place.
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