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West Coast Eagles

2019 season review: Josh Kennedy

Best of 2019 - Josh Kennedy West Coast's leading goal-kicker reached 600 career majors in our Round 19 clash with the Roos

Adam Simpson has always said West Coast are a better side with Kennedy in it, regardless of whether or not he’s kicking bags of goals. For that reason alone, the Eagles’ senior coach would have been rapt to see the dual Coleman medallist out on the paddock 22 times this year. From a health standpoint, it was Kennedy’s most productive season in three years. He only managed 19 and 14 appearances in 2017 and 2018 respectively. The three-time all-Australian made his presence felt early in the season, recording back-to-back three-goal hauls against Collingwood and Fremantle in rounds three and four. He was at his powerful best against the Demons in round nine (four goals), brought up his 600th AFL goal in style against North Melbourne (seven goals) and monstered the Bombers’ defence in the club’s lone finals win, booting four goals in front of the blue and gold faithful.

Standout performance: Bouncing the Roos

After failing to boot goals in rounds 15 and 17, some experts questioned Kennedy’s capacity to compete at the highest level. Some even, laughably, thought it was time for the club’s most prolific goal kicker to hang up the boots. All that chatter disappeared following the 31-year-old’s commanding round 19 performance against the Kangaroos. Kennedy bagged five goals before half-time and booted his 600th career major in the third term to become just the 32nd VFL/AFL to reach that mark. Fittingly, long-time sidekick Jack Darling had a hand in Kennedy's milestone major, intercepting a risky North kick and handballing to the bearded Eagle, who shrugged two opponents and snapped a beauty on his left boot to a standing ovation. He capped off the stirring performance with a seventh goal late in the penultimate term.

Season averages:

Disposals: 8.3
Score involvements: 5.3
Contested possessions: 4.5
Shots at goal: 4.2
Marks: 4.0
Marks inside 50: 2.9
Goals: 2.2
Tackles: 1.8
Tackles inside 50: 1.1