Collingwood utility Tyson Goldsack is set to play his 100th senior game in round 20 2013.
Goldsack is in his seventh year at the club after arriving via the Gippsland U18s with the 63rd selection in the 2006 National Draft.
“They didn’t say they were going to draft me, but they just said my name was in the mix, and when they read it out on draft day, it wasn’t so much a relief, just excitement, I wasn’t really expecting that much, I’m just happy to be here.” – Tyson Goldsack, 9 February 2007.
In his first 99 games, Goldsack has filled several roles according to what the team requires on a week-to-week and year-to-year basis.
His height (193cm), spring and pace makes him an attractive option at both ends of the ground and his tenacity and refusal to concede intensifies the Magpies’ defensive pressure.
Goldsack played his first game for Collingwood in round eight, 2007, when he took on the Western Bulldogs.
Goldsack bursts from half back in one of his first games for Collingwood’s VFL affiliate Williamstown in 2007.
“Probably for the first time in my life I was speechless,” the energetic Goldsack told collingwoodfc.com.au on 22 May, 2007.
“I was on the massage table, and then Mick brought me to his office, shook my hand and said congratulations you’re debuting this week.”
“He just kind of wished me well, that kind of thing, it was pretty full on, I was overwhelmed by it.”
He missed only one game from there on, playing a key role in his side’s charge to the 2007 Preliminary Final. Goldsack stood up in each of his side’s three finals and earned an AFL Rising Star nomination for his performance againstSydney’s Michael O’Loughlin in round 21.
The next few years weren’t as smooth as he’d no doubt have liked. Several injuries and illness put paid to his hopes of developing any continuity in his football but he invariably managed to get his body in shape for September.
Goldsack gets a breather during a training session in South Africa in January 2008.
Goldsack was a member of Collingwood’s memorable Preliminary Final victory over Geelong in 2010 but stiff to make way for Leon Davis ahead of the Grand Final against St Kilda.
Tyson Goldsack takes his seat on the team bus as the Magpies travel into the city for the 2010 Grand Final Parade.
The football gods smiled on Goldsack when the Magpies drew with the Saints,resulting in a Replay the following Saturday.
This time, Goldsack received the nod to replace Davis and repaid the coaching staff’s faith by kicking the first goal five minutes into the match.
He earned a total of nine possessions, four marks and three tackles in the Replay and to this day is the only player on Collingwood’s list with a ‘clean’ Grand Final record. He knows only success on Grand Final day, and has experienced neither defeat nor a draw.
Goldsack celebrates the 2010 premiership with the loyal Magpie Army along the Great Southern Stand wing on 2 October 2010.
That oddity is a result of his omission from the Collingwood side after the2011 Qualifying Final. Despite successfully blanketing West Coast’s Andrew Embley, Goldsack missed out on his side’s Preliminary Final win over Hawthorn and the Grand Final loss to Geelong in the week that followed.
In 2012, Goldsack responded with arguably his finest season to date.
With new coach Nathan Buckley trying to find the right balance for his forward line, Goldsack became the third tall forward behind Travis Cloke and Chris Dawes.
He moved into attack against Essendon on ANZAC Day where he laid seven tackles and kept Dustin Fletcher relatively ineffective.
Goldsack quickly found his touch in front of goal and ended the season with a total of 24. He laid an equal team-high eight tackles in the emotional Semi-Final win over West Coast and tried to spark his side with an early final quarter goal in the loss to Sydney the following week.
The 2013 season hasn’t been straight forward for Goldsack, who underwent ankle surgery over the off-season and then sat out 10 rounds with a hip complaint.
Importantly, the 26-year-old is nearing his best form as Collingwood’s eighth straight finals series looms large on the horizon.
Twelve of his 99 games have been finals and all who bleed Black and White will be hoping that he can substantially add to that tally in the weeks to come.