Jake Melksham celebrates after kicking a goal during the Demons and Giants' semi-final last year. Picture: Phil Hillyard
Jake Melksham celebrates after kicking a goal during the Demons and Giants' semi-final last year. Picture: Phil Hillyard

Melksham thanks Dees for new deal

DYNAMIC Melbourne forward Jake Melksham has been rewarded for his career-best AFL season with a new three-year deal that binds him to the Demons until the end of the 2022 season.

The 27-year-old was one of the catalysts behind the club's first finals appearance in more than a decade, kicking 32 goals last year - third overall for the Demons.

Melksham couldn't be more grateful to Melbourne for its support, particularly through his season-long suspension in 2016 arising out of the Essendon sports supplements saga, and was pleasantly surprised to lock in a new long-term contract.

"This is my fourth year at the club now and I'm getting to that age bracket where I'm a little bit older, so for them to show that faith and give me another three-year extension is really exciting for both parties," Melksham told the club's website.

He said the Demons, who made it through to the preliminary final last year, were perfectly poised to push for what would be a drought-breaking premiership this year, and beyond.

"I think the last four to six weeks of the home-and-away season were building and then to play those two finals in Melbourne at the MCG against Geelong and Hawthorn … it was good to beat them," he said.

"The Dees fans were up and about as well so it was a great time to be playing footy and to be a part of Melbourne.

"Although we didn't perform the way we wanted to (against West Coast in the preliminary final), I feel like we've learned a lot of lessons from the season and from that game in particular to hopefully take it to the next level this year."

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