The perseverance of Jamaine Jones and Connor West to forge AFL careers has been rewarded with the promising duo signing one-year contract extensions.
After finding their way to West Coast via circuitous routes, both Jones, 23, and West, 22, will remain with the club as rookies in 2022.
Jones, the ex-Cat who auditioned at Mineral Resources Park before receiving his shot in blue and gold on the eve of the 2020 campaign, has re-signed following an encouraging second season featuring some lively performances.
He kicked 11 goals in 15 games (including three as unused medi-sub), after starting with a bang with three majors in round two against the Western Bulldogs.
The energetic small forward also showed his defensive appetite, averaging more than three tackles per game. Jones laid seven tackles in round nine against Adelaide and eight in round 23 in Brisbane coming off a six-week ankle injury.
Hard-nosed midfielder West only arrived at the Eagles in June via the mid-season rookie draft but quickly made an impression with his uncompromising attack on the football.
The son of former Eagle, Robbie, he debuted in the stirring round 18 win over the Crows at Adelaide Oval and gathered 19 touches in a 42-point victory.
From five appearances, West finished the season averaging 12.6 disposals and 2.6 tackles, and kicked his first goal during the team’s late fightback against eventual premier Melbourne in round 22.
“Connor was only with the club for a couple of months but he quickly became a popular squad member and gave the boys a real lift when he came into the side late in the year,” Recruiting and List Manager Rohan O’Brien said.
“It was great to see him grab the opportunity and we are looking forward to seeing what he can do next year with a full pre-season under his belt.
“Jamaine has been unlucky with some injuries during his time at the club but took a step forward this year and added ground-level threat and pressure in our front half.
“We believe he is still improving and it is pleasing he will be with the club again next season.”