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Weitering winning respect

Carlton Media  April 11, 2017 11:25 AM

Weitering's craft Watch Jacob Weitering's half time feature, with thanks to Channel 7.

Arguably one of the competition’s most exciting versatile players, Jacob Weitering remains as poised as ever, a quality that is quickly becoming a trademark of the young utility.

In the Blues’ brave 15-point victory against Essendon on Sunday, the 19-year-old was involved in a brutal clash of heads with opponent Michael Hurley in the second quarter and continued to play his role for the side, drawing praise from coach Brendon Bolton.

“He got split open… but came back on and did a role for us up forward when we needed another number. We needed to play with grit and he did,” Bolton said.

Similarly, the second-year player also drew acclaim from his skipper in Marc Murphy on Monday morning.

“It was a big effort from ‘Weiters’, he copped a big hit and came back on to play a role for us and played really well," Murpy said.

AFL 2017 Round 03 - Carlton v Essendon
Down, but not out. Jacob Weitering receives medical attention after copping a big hit. (Photo: AFL Media)

Not that the praise would phase the typically understated Weitering, who is determined to continue to win the respect of his Blues’ teammates.

“It’s hard in your first year as an 18-year-old, you’re just set on football and you’re set on AFL and you want to do the best you can and earn the respect of your teammates,” Weitering said. 

“For me now in my second year playing 20-odd games, hopefully I’m on my way to earning some respect amongst the playing group (at the Blues).

“Being only 20-odd games into my career, it’s probably hard to say I fully belong at the moment. I guess you just want to be a consistent footballer, you want to be a really good footballer but you look at people like Kade Simpson who has played 267 games for the Club and I think that’s when you really belong.”

AFL 2017 Round 03 - Carlton v Essendon
All's well that ends well. (Photo: AFL Media)

After cementing himself in the Blues’ backline last year under the tutelage of backline coach Dale Amos, Weitering made the switch to the forward line in Round 1 against Richmond.

“I’m feeling really comfortable in both positions.  Playing down back, we’re a really tight-knit group with a good mix of senior players and young players who have come in and I love it down there. I like stopping the goals,” he said.

“But I know I’m not the fastest player going around so I have to rely on my ability to read the play.

“Playing up forward, I obviously love kicking goals and I guess it’s a bit of a selfless role. Across all areas of the ground, we have to defend as well as attack so you have to get up and down the ground a bit.”