RETIRED premiership player Liam Picken will be watching proudly as his former Western Bulldogs teammate and fellow south-west export Easton Wood competes for a second flag.
Wood captained the Bulldogs to their drought-breaking premiership in 2016 while Picken played a starring role in the grand final, kicking three goals including the sealer from his 25 disposals.
The 35-year-old, who was born and raised in Hamilton, was excited to see his former captain on the AFL's biggest stage once again.
"It is fantastic to see him five years on to be able to get another chance of winning the flag," he said.
"He has played for such a long time and is now a seasoned player. He is a fantastic country boy and it would be good to see someone from Western Victoria win another flag."
Picken, who retired in 2019 due to ongoing concussion symptoms, said another south-west export in number one draft pick Jamarra Ugle-Hagan would also benefit from the experience despite not playing in any of the finals this year.
"In his first year he has been able to travel and experience all the highs and lows, which is fantastic for his experience," he said.
"To be able to spend time going away with the team and learning off the experienced players it will help him for the rest of his career."
Picken, who lives in Melbourne with wife Annie and children Malachy, Delphi and Cheska, said the Bulldogs playing in the grand final was uplifting for fans in their hometown.
"It is exciting, especially being locked down in Melbourne and it has been great to watch the boys over the last few weeks being outsiders," he said.
"It gives everyone locked down in Melbourne watching the boys play a boost.
"The last few weeks have been exciting being the underdogs and it's great seeing them play well and get a chance at a flag."
Picken said he was enjoying watching a new crop of Bulldogs' stars working alongside some of the heroes of the 2016 victory.
He still has fond memories of the Bulldogs' victory five years ago, labelling it "one of the best days of my footy career".
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