Ex- Blood Jetta joins elite club after taking second shot at glory
SYDNEY Swan turned West Coast Eagle Lewis Jetta has grabbed a special piece of history becoming just the 30th player in AFL/ VFL history to win a premiership at two clubs.
The dasher had to fight for his spot in the Eagles premiership line- up, playing just 27 games in his first two years back home in Western Australia.
But a switch to defence this season helped the wingman cement his place in a super talented Eagles team and claim an epic premiership win.
“It feels amazing,” Jetta said. “Words can’t describe how I feel. The best thing about it is I get to do the lap of honour with my kids ( Lewis, 7,
and Daisy, 5). It was one of my proudest moments.”
Playing on Will Hoskin- Elliott for most of the game along with occasional spells on Travis Varcoe and Josh Thomas, Jetta did a good job containing the explosive group of Collingwood small forwards, who finished with two goals between them.
Had the Magpies saluted it would have been Varcoe who joined the two- club premiership team after winning the 2009 and 2011 flags with Geelong.
“Our boys are an unbelievable bunch,” Jetta said. “They just kept fighting and fighting. Dom Sheed’s left foot — it’s that red dirt from Kalgoorlie coming out of him right there.”
Sheed’s match- winning goal from the boundary was complimented by Jetta’s penetrating and accurate kicking from defence.
The former Swan helped set up a host of forward thrusts and dominated the territorial game. The Eagles finished with a 63- 48 advantage in the inside 50 count and had 23 scoring shots to the Magpies 19.
Debutant premiership coach Adam Simpson paid tribute to Jetta in the lead- up to the match declaring he had become a “real man” in his time in Perth while fighting for his spot.
“On field he’s been great but off field he’s turned into a real man,” Simpson said.
“He has a young family and he’s called ‘ Uncle Jetts’ by the Indigenous boys. They really look up to him and he’s a really deep thinker and a leader. When I got him over I wasn’t thinking about his leadership but he’s grown into it.”
Jetta was a key figure in the Swans’ 2012 premiership team kicking 45 goals from the wing and earning a nomination for the All Australian team.
His 80- metre run and goal against Collingwood in the preliminary final at ANZ Stadium and his sprint away from Cyril Rioli in the grand final are etched in the memories of the Sydney faithful.
His 2014 grand final was one to forget and he probably did after Ben McEvoy knocked him unconscious in a marking contest. He finished the day with just four possessions as the Hawks belted Sydney.
“I knew what it felt to lose,” Jetta said.
Willie Rioli, Liam Ryan, Tom Cole and Lewis Jetta celebrate.