A tough start the season against the previous two premiers is a challenge the Saints aren't shirking away from, with newly re-signed assistant coach Corey Enright seeing the match-ups as the ideal way to measure the Saints' systems against the best. 

There’s certainly no easing into the season for the Saints as they face the 2022 and 2023 premiers – Geelong and Collingwood respectively – in succession to begin this year’s campaign, with Enright keen to see his side test themselves against “quality opposition” early in the piece.


“We’ve got Geelong Round 1 and Collingwood Round 2, so it’s going to give us a really good early season indication of where we’re at,” Enright said at this morning’s press conference.

“We felt like last year was a really good building block for us and for us to just continue to improve. 

“Where that takes us we’re not sure, but we are really excited, the players are really energised and we’re looking forward to hopefully building on what we started last year.”

Enright will be a key cog in continuing St Kilda’s momentum and progression from last season, signing a two-year extension alongside Head of Development and Learning, Damian Carroll.

Since joining the club in 2022, Enright has played a crucial hand in the evolution of St Kilda’s backline into one of the best in the league, facilitating the rise of key players Jack Sinclair, Nasiah Wanganeen-Milera and Callum Wilkie.

The triple-Premiership Cat and six-time All-Australian was inducted into The Australian Football Hall of Fame last year, joining fellow coaches Robert Harvey and Lenny Hayes in receiving the coveted honour. 

“It’s really exciting for myself and the club. We feel like we’re making progress and I’m just excited about what’s to come,” Enright said.

“I’ve been here for a couple of years now, we’ve had new people coming in and got some really good kids coming through.

“We played finals last year and hopefully we can continue on with that progress.”

With Jack Sinclair touch-and-go to feature in Round 1 as he recovers from a calf setback - despite receiving positive results from this week’s routine scan - the Saints’ well-settled backline could see some new faces at GMHBA Stadium. 

Sunday’s AAMI Community Series game against North Melbourne at RSEA Park shapes as the ideal stage for any prospective Saints to push towards an early season berth, with the final side to be announced on Saturday evening.

“We picked up Riley Bonner as a mature player coming in and he played well last week. He’s come to a new club, he’s trained really hard and earned the respect of the group,” Enright said.

“We drafted some young defenders as well this year - whether they get a look in early stages this year, later stages this year or even next year (we’ll have to wait and see).

“We’ve got some really experienced campaigners in that group, but also some younger guys pushing up through which is exciting.”