Seagulls scored several cabinet collectables for the Williamstown Football Club at this year’s VFL and VFLW Best and Fairest, recognising the achievements of some of its top players and reaping rewards for a team at the top of its league.
Star midfielder Michael Gibbons was awarded his second J.J. Liston Trophy in a dramatic count tying with AFL Listed Tiger Anthony Miles on 19 votes after an outstanding season averaging 28.6 disposals, 12 contested possessions and seven clearances.
Gibbons became the eighth multiple winner of the J.J. Liston Trophy in its history, and the third this decade, emulating the feats of Shane Valenti in 2010 and 2011, and Steve Clifton in 2010 and 2013.
He polled in eight games this season, as he did when winning the award back in 2016. He collected five best on grounds, won more than he did as runner up last year, with one set of two votes and two sets of one votes.
Gibbons also lead the VFL in kicks and inside 50s this year and, remarkably, from 18 games he was name Williamstown’s best players on 14 occasions. After being runner up in last year’s count, Gibbons said taking out the J.J. Liston Trophy again is a huge honour.
“It’s very humbling to win this award for the second time, I can’t thank my teammates and the club enough for all they’ve done for me in my five years down at Williamstown,” Gibbons said.
“I didn’t come here for individual awards but it’s very exciting to win this with a guy I’ve looked up to in Anthony Miles. Hopefully I can add to this medal in two weeks time with another premiership medal.”
It was a medal already added to VFL Team of the Year honours on the night, with those honours also enjoyed by Seagulls VFLW superstar Jess Duffin who took home the Lambert-Pearce medal for being the VFLW Best and Fairest for 2018.
The midfielder starred in the Seagulls inaugural season amassing over 25 disposals a game, leading the club in goal kicking and leading the competition in marks, disposals, inside 50s and uncontested possessions.
Duffin described her year at the Williamstown Football Club as both challenging and rewarding, and credited the culture of the newly formed Seagulls with helping her push her game to another level this season.
“I was able to help some of the younger girls out and that helped me with my game also. It is a huge credit to the work that Amy Caterall, Jason Reddick and Michelle Redfern have put in to get this team together and to finish the season with this is an incredible honour.”