The Western Bulldogs have locked away another one of their young pups early, with forward Josh Schache extending his contract to the end of 2022 despite already having a deal to the end of 2020.
The No.2 pick by the Brisbane Lions in the 2015 draft, Schache joined the Bulldogs in the trade period ahead of the 2018 season in exchange for pick 25 and 40 and has since played 27 games at his new club.
Josh Schache at Bulldogs training on Wednesday morning.Credit:Jason South
"It was a very easy decision to re-commit here at the Bulldogs and I have loved every minute here over the last couple of years," Schache told reporters on Wednesday.
"I love every aspect of the club, the coaches and the players have been really good for me since coming into the club and very excited for what lies ahead."
Schache played 14 games in 2019. He was dropped after four rounds and then played in the VFL before getting injured. He then played every game but one from round 14 to the Dogs' elimination final loss to GWS.
"It was obviously very disappointing how we finished the season but that was my first finals game and got a lot of experience out of that and a lot of confidence going forward; I know what it takes to be able to beat a good side like GWS," he said.
The 22-year-old said he believed that he, Aaron Naughton and new recruit Josh Bruce could play in the forward line together.
"I’d like to think that it can happen," Schache said. "I believe that the club believes that it can happen and I am very excited to work alongside them and work off each other and improve going into the next couple of years.
"I'd definitely like to explore those options [of being the forward who pushes up the ground] and wherever the coaches want me to play I am happy to play.
"I don’t mind getting up the ground and if I need to be back deep I will do that."
Alex Keath was walking laps of the Whitten Oval on Wednesday morning as he recovers from a leg injury while Jackson Trengove trained despite the session only being compulsory for first-to-fourth-year players.
Schache said he was close to having his body where he wanted it, save for possibly putting on one kilogram or two in weight, depending on the role he plays.
"It’s obviously a great place to come every day and I know personally I enjoy coming every day and being able to learn and have fun," he said.
"I am very confident I can push my body to new limits again and performance is the main thing, and keep that consistent."
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