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Webster carrying momentum through the summer

Josh Gabelich  January 9, 2018 3:27 PM

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 15: Jimmy Webster of the Saints in action during the St Kilda Saints open training session at Linen House Centre on December 15, 2017 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media)

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 15: Jimmy Webster of the Saints in action during the St Kilda Saints open training session at Linen House Centre on December 15, 2017 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media)

I’m feeling really good at this time of year, which is great because I’ve missed parts of the last two pre-seasons.

After the best season of his burgeoning career, St Kilda defender Jimmy Webster has put the blocks in place to take another step in 2018.

The 24-year-old emerged as a long-term replacement for Leigh Montagna last season, finishing 7th in the Trevor Barker Award after averaging 18.8 disposals, 3.6 rebound 50s and 314.2 metres gained across 18 games.

“I’ve trained pretty much every session so far, just missing one or two when my workload has been managed,” Webster told saints.com.au on Tuesday afternoon.

“I’m feeling really good at this time of year, which is great because I’ve missed parts of the last two pre-seasons.”

While Webster wasn’t troubled in 2017 by the hamstring problems that have haunted him in the past, the Tasmanian has focused on improving his lower body strength this summer.

“I’ve spent a lot of time in the gym this summer focusing on putting on a bit more size, strengthening my hammies because I’ve had a little bit of trouble with them in the past,” he said.

“I’ve been doing my weights alongside ‘Sav’ [Shane Savage] because he’s had his own hamstring troubles in the past too.

“We’ve been focusing on the muscles around the hammies, so the glutes and the quads to make them all a bit stronger.”

With Montagna in the early stages of retirement, Webster said himself and Shane Savage are looking to fill the void left by the dual All-Australian, both in terms of leadership and rebound.

“It’s something ‘Sav’ and I are both working on this year,” he said.

“Now that ‘Joey’ is gone, we both want to take that next step and fill that role that he played and his leadership down there.”

St Kilda returned from the Christmas break last Saturday morning, with captain Jarryn Geary leading the field home in the opening 3km time-trial of the new year.