When Frankston forward Bailey Lambert went to bed at his Ashwood home on Saturday night after a four-goal haul in the win against Aspley, he was still buzzing.
So he picked up his phone and buzzed his captain.
“I messaged Josh Newman after the game last night because I couldn’t sleep, to say “I’ve never had more fun playing football in my entire life” and I messaged Will Fordham as well to say ‘thankyou’ for building the culture,” Lambert said buoyantly.
“They’ve made it so you’re not playing footy with 20 other footballers, you’re playing with 20 of your best mates.
“I can’t really say what it’s like, it’s unbelievable.”
Lambert, among Frankston’s best performers in the first three weeks as a clean pressure forward, is the exuberant personality that every football club needs.
He’s the talkative larrikin that Nathan Freeman aptly described as a “ball of energy” on SEN last week.
He’ll ask photographer Matt Walker whether his boisterous goal celebrations have been shot.
And, as well as three wins, he has had plenty to celebrate individually in the first three weeks having kicked 11 goals.
Playing as a dangerous hybrid forward, he gets the Sherrin onto his boot quickly to pounce on the ground-ball and his aerial capabilities give him plenty of opportunities to showcase his unrushed set shot routine.
His exuberance also shines through when he gets higher up the field, with his youthful, in-your-face persona fitting in perfectly with Frankston’s aggression.
But equally, his text message shows he is the well-mannered clubman grateful to be enjoying his footy.
The person that takes time to speak to everyone around the Frankston Football Club – players, staff, volunteers.
The ferocious pressure player that gets joy from setting teammates up – epitomising the identity Frankston’s small forwards are trying to create.
“The boys up there try to push each other into it because it might not be your day, but you’re trying to make your moment defensively because if you’re on the whole time and pressuring the other team, eventually they will crack.”
“We wanted to be known as a forward line where it’s hard to get the ball out cleanly because if you get sloppy exits, it’s gonna come back in a lot more often.”
In round one he got the Domino’s Defensive Player of the Week for his tackling and pressure on opposition ball-carriers inside 50.
It shows his pride for the jumper.