The Carlton Football Club is excited to announce that Ben Crocker has re-signed with its VFL side for 2022.

Crocker will look to carry over his strong 2021 form, which saw him take home the Carlton Reserves’ inaugural best and fairest.

In the side’s first season in the VFL, Crocker proved to be a consistent performer in attack, which saw him earn a spot in the forward line for the 2021 VFL team of the season.

Despite the limited amount of games in the VFL due to Covid interruptions, Crocker made the most of his opportunities, kicking 29 goals in just nine games. His most notable performance came in Round 2, where he bagged seven goals against Brisbane.

Having kicked at least two goals in each game last season, the mid-sized forward showed he could be a reliable source for providing scores as one of the standout attackers in the competition.

Carlton Reserves coach Daniel O’Keefe said Crocker’s commitment was an important first step in the team’s list build for 2022 and beyond.

“Ben was a real standout for us in the 2021 season, so to secure his signature for next year is really exciting for our program,” O’Keefe said.

“Ben has such a commitment to get the best out of himself and we saw the rewards with what he produced at VFL level this year. To end the season as our inaugural best-and-fairest winner and in the VFL Team of the Year is a testament to him.

 “He’s such a unique match up given he can play above his height and with his speed and power. We think that he can get even better than his 2021 form with more time at the football club with his teammates.

“Off the field, Ben is an exceptional character and was invaluable in building that connection between our AFL and VFL programs.”

Thomas Dev is a student at La Trobe University, undergoing his Bachelor of Media and Communications (Sports Journalism). He is currently undertaking an internship at the Carlton Football Club as part of its partnership with La Trobe University.