Jaeger O'Meara

How Important will the experience of JOM be to Fremantle in 2023? Picture afl.com.au

After striking a deal at the very last moment of the trade period, Jaeger O’Meara is on his way to a third club.

After striking a deal at the very last moment of the trade period, Jaeger O’Meara is on his way to his third club.

O’Meara joined the Fremantle Dockers for a future second-round selection and Lloyd Meek.

As a Docker, O’Meara will also line up in his home state of Western Australia, after beginning his career on the Gold Coast as a Sun before playing 99 games for the Hawks.

And, at 28, O’Meara adds plenty of experience to the fast-rising Dockers.

Head of Player Personnel David Walls, who gave up 2022 Peel Best and Fairest Meek for the Hawks mid, is excited to secure O’Meara’s signature.

“We are thrilled to add Jaeger to our midfield mix. He’s 28 and brings valuable leadership and experience to our list,” Walls said.

“His talent is undoubted, and he’s shown incredible adversity to bounce back and play regular football after sustaining a significant knee injury early in his career.

“Freo fans will be well aware of Jaeger’s abilities after watching him at Optus Stadium earlier this year.

“He’s also a great defensive midfielder, averaging five tackles a game, which is a trait we highly value in our midfield.”

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So, what can O’Meara provide to his new club?

One of O’Meara’s best attributes at Hawthorn was his clearance work, which saw him average 2.1 centre clearances in 2022, the most at the Hawks.

Importantly, his numbers would have put him second at centre clearances at Fremantle, behind Will Brodie only.

O’Meara also led the Hawks in overall clearances, with 107 for the year (5.1 a game) which would have seen him third at the Dockers, behind Brodie and Caleb Serong, and such skills will hold him in good stead with the recent retirement of David Mundy, who amassed 105 for the year (4.7 average)

Another important element of O’Meara’s game is his ability to hit the scoreboard as a midfielder.

Among Hawthorn midfielders, O’Meara was equal first for goals for Hawthorn in 2022, with nine (0.4 average) as well as second for goal assists with 15 (0.7 average)

Freo’s recent forward half acquisitions of Luke Jackson and Josh Corbett will benefit from the supply O’Meara provides, as if he played for Fremantle in 2022, he would have ranked first in the Dockers midfield for goal assists out of players who played 10+ games, four ahead of Andrew Brayshaw.

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