Wright ended his second season in the AFL as the Gold Coast’s most improved player to go with a nomination for the AFL Rising Star and AFL Players’ Association’s 22Under22 squad.
The 19-year-old was recognised for his Rising Star nomination in Melbourne yesterday that came on the back of a Round 15 performance against St Kilda where he kicked three goals, had 14 touches and took 10 marks for the Suns.
Wright announced himself as one of the best up-and-coming forwards but said he wanted to provide more than just a glimpse into his talent when he returns next season.
“From a personal level I take a lot of confidence out of the year knowing I can play at the level,” Wright said.
“My best is good enough but for me it’s about making sure I’m consistent week to week.
“I was really disappointed with the back end of my year; I had some inconsistent form and feel I didn’t play my role for the team as well as I should have.
“Moving forward to the pre-season, I’m looking to make sure I’m a consistent contributor for the team. It just gives me a lot of confidence going into the pre-season that I can make an impact next year.”
Wright was the third most accurate goal kicker (27 goals, 69.2 per cent) by anyone who kicked more than 25 goals, behind Collingwood’s Alex Fasolo (25 goals, 78.1 per cent) and Hawthorn’s Cyril Rioli (44 goals, 75.9 per cent).
With his goalkicking in good condition, Wright said it would not be his impact on the scoreboard that would become his primary focus.
“It won’t be about kicking goals and things like that but just making sure I’m getting to contests and improving my work rate and making sure that‘s the same every week regardless of whether I get a kick or not.”
Sydney Swans talent Callum Mills was named the AFL Rising Star at the official awards ceremony yesterday after polling 49 votes to win ahead of Western Bulldogs’ Caleb Daniel (41) and Carlton’s Jacob Weitering (26).
“It’s been a surreal year so far but the exciting thing is we’re still going and hopefully we can go deep into September,” Mills said.
“ ‘Horse’ (John Longmire) came up to me at the end of last year and said ‘We’re going to try you at half-back’. I know Rhyce Shaw left a huge void and I’m trying to fill that.”
Wright’s housemate and fellow Suns player Touk Miller had successful arthroscopic surgery on his left ankle at the Wesley Hospital yesterday.