AFTER farewelling nine teammates last year and meeting another nine, Nick Dal Santo is well aware of the changing landscape of St Kilda.
Now well and truly a veteran of the Saints, Dal Santo said he had noticed the group around him becoming younger and younger.
“It feels different, there’s no doubt about it when you look around the locker room and there’s not many guys older than you,” Dal Santo said.
“Things change really quickly and that is the footy environment unfortunately. You lose mates along the way and it is a good place to be, there are a lot of young kids and that brings some excitement as well.”
But while Dal Santo has seen some close friends and long-time teammates leave over the past two seasons, it hadn’t changed his hunger for success.
“It’s just the way it goes, you lose a lot of mates along the way but football clubs evolve and if you get stuck worrying about people who have gone you miss your next opportunity,” he said.
It has been a big summer for Dal Santo who married partner Jules shortly before jetting off to Boulder, Colorado for a training camp.
After flying back home from the camp, the 28-year-old embarked on his honeymoon before returning last week to full training.
“I feel really good, really refreshed. To this stage we’ve pretty much done everything we can,” he said.
“We had a really good block of training pre-Christmas including the Boulder, Colorado camp which was great. We’re back into it now and that’s for the next 10 months.”
The only St Kilda player not to make it to Boulder was Sam Gilbert who was home recovering from shoulder surgery.
Dal Santo said Gilbert was recovering well and training hard.
“He looks good. I didn’t see him much before Christmas. When we got back the operation went fantastic and he is running well and joining training,” he said.
“You need to be a little cautious with shoulders at this time of year. You don’t need to be fighting each other on the track. I think he will be ready to go in round one.”
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