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Contender: Seb Ross

Michael Ryan  September 13, 2018 12:07 PM

Prolific ball-winner Seb Ross could be in line for consecutive Trevor Barker Awards. - St Kilda Saints,Sebastian Ross

Prolific ball-winner Seb Ross could be in line for consecutive Trevor Barker Awards.

Seb finished strongly, and his on-field leadership really improved this year.

Reigning club champion Seb Ross could be in line for back-to-back Trevor Barker Awards after another prolific year in the Saints’ engine room.

The 25-year-old backed up his award-winning 2017 by continuing to amass huge numbers, his average 30.1 disposals the eighth-highest in the league.

READ: The science behind Seb

The nephew of Essendon legend Tim Watson and cousin of Jobe, both Bombers captains, Ross has leadership in his blood.

He’s been in the Saints’ leadership group for two years, and his significant growth as an on-field leader in 2018 has him earmarked for the St Kilda captaincy in future.

The star midfielder is the pinnacle of professionalism at the Saints, and his discipline, maturity and incredible work ethic set an impeccable standard for his teammates to follow.

Ross’ statistics confirm he is among the Saints’ most elite, polling first overall in disposals, second in tackles, rebound-50s, inside-50s and clearances, and third in contested possessions.

Director of Coaching Danny Sexton confirmed that his widespread dominance across the park perfectly imitated Season 2018 for Ross, who was played in a variety of different roles throughout 2018.

“There were times when we played Seb behind the ball to generate some offence,” he told saints.com.au.

“He played a fair bit on the wing, probably for the first time in his career, and he was also used at various times as a run-with player.

"Seb finished strongly, and his on-field leadership really improved this year."

WATCH: Seb hits 100

Ross improved with age throughout the season, not dipping below 30 disposals in the last six games.

But by far his most influential game came against the Western Bulldogs in Round 20, when he racked up a then-career-high 40 disposals and booted three goals straight.

A third-quarter capitulation ultimately gave the game to the Bulldogs, but Ross finished with team-high numbers in disposals, contested possessions (10), score involvements (10) and metres gained (561).

In a year where the Saints were often criticised for their lack of consistency, Ross provided just that; his reliability to win the football and offer tireless effort no matter the circumstances rendering him a firm crowd favourite.

Ross won last year’s Trevor Barker Award count with 159 votes, 35 ahead of Dylan Roberton in second place.