Experienced defender Matt Suckling has re-signed with the Western Bulldogs.
The one-year contract extension will keep the 31-year-old at VU Whitten Oval until at least the end of 2020.
Suckling has played 66 AFL games across four seasons in red, white and blue. Having missed the second half of 2018 through injury, he has returned to play 16 games at AFL level so far this season.
He joined the Bulldogs after the 2015 season, following 102 matches and two premierships with Hawthorn.
General Manager of List and Recruiting, Sam Power, said Suckling continued to be an important player for the Bulldogs.
“Matt’s having another consistent year and it’s pleasing to lock him in for 2020,” Power said.
“Over the past four seasons, he’s become an influential member of our playing group and has had a significant impact on and off the field.
“Matt has played a variety of roles this year. He’s spent time down back where his elite kicking skills help to set the game up, and has also pushed forward at times and had an impact.
“He’s now one of the more senior players on our list, and his experience and leadership on the field and around the Club continues to be really important for our young group.”
Suckling has averaged 19.9 disposals and 5.5 marks per match in 2019, and has kicked nine goals.
He becomes the 11th player to re-sign with the Bulldogs this year, following the likes of Lachie Hunter, Josh Dunkley, Caleb Daniel, Tom Liberatore, Aaron Naughton and Tim English.
“It’s always nice to sign an extension, and I’ve loved my move across from Hawthorn,” Suckling said today.
“I’m really enjoying my time here under Bevo and we’re playing some good footy at the moment, so I’m excited about staying around.
“I feel like we’re building something pretty special.
“It’s a young group of guys who are really developing and I think we’re seeing that, especially in the second half of the year. Hopefully that keeps building and there’s exciting times ahead.”