#6 Lachlan Hansen
After missing North Melbourne’s finals campaign last season due to injury, Lachie Hansen entered 2015 behind the eight-ball after having surgery on both of his hips. The number three draft pick from 2006, who has made a name for himself as an elite intercept marker in defence, made his return to the senior line-up in Round 6 against Richmond in Hobart. With 11 grabs and 12 disposals from just over three quarters of footy, Hansen looked set to become a key contributor as North’s season got running.
A week later against Essendon, Hansen was crucial in a tight win, accumulating 24 possessions and taking a season-high 14 marks. However, his form tapered off, but still managed to take some important marks deep in defence, especially against West Coast and Greater Western Sydney in Rounds 10 and 12. In Round 14 against Gold Coast, Hansen suffered a worrying injury to his troublesome hip, missing two weeks of football before returning through the VFL.
After two weeks with Werribee, Hansen returned in Round 19 against Melbourne, however his form was initially scratchy. In Round 23 against Richmond, he proved his worth to the team, hauling in 11 grabs and collecting 19 touches. His performance saw him earn selection for North Melbourne’s Elimination Final against the Tigers, his first final since 2012.
Hansen carried his good form into the Kangaroos’ do-or-die clash with Richmond, cutting off plenty of opposition attacks with nine marks and 21 possessions to be one of North’s best players on the field. He was strong again the following week against Sydney, before a quiet game in the Preliminary Final against West Coast.
At 27 and with 133 games to his name, Hansen is one of the team’s most experienced players, and the ability to participate in pre-season training will do him wonders heading into the 2016 season. Still remains one of North Melbourne’s most pivotal players, as when Hansen is on top of his game, the Kangaroos are rarely beaten.
Defender Lachie Hansen has opened up about the pre-game nerves he felt ahead of his first game of the year for North last Saturday.
When North Melbourne key defender Lachlan Hansen landed awkwardly after a marking contest against Essendon on Friday night he initially feared he had stirred up the groin and hip issues that ruined his second half of 2014.
Defender Lachie Hansen says he is ready to regain his spot in North’s 22-man squad after making a successful comeback from a hip complaint last Sunday.
Lachlan Hansen is available to replace suspended defender Michael Firrito after overcoming hip soreness, but midfield star Daniel Wells is still at least another two weeks away from a return, North Melbourne coach Brad Scott says.
Lachie Hansen was a frustrated spectator throughout North Melbourne’s last finals campaign and the important defender is a welcome addition to this year’s mix.