Brotherly love helps drive Docker Hill

Brotherly love helps drive Docker Hill

Fremantle midfielder Stephen Hill admits he can’t help but feel a tiny bit jealous about his brother’s two AFL premierships.

But the 25-year-old Docker hopes he’ll be able to taste some flag glory of his own within the next month.

Although Bradley Hill is three years younger than Stephen, the star Hawks midfielder has already won two flags, with one of the premiership wins coming against Fremantle in 2013.

Stephen, who will notch his 150-game milestone in Saturday’s qualifying final against Sydney, said watching his brother’s success had made him even hungrier for flag glory.

“My brother’s won a couple of premierships, and seeing him have them just drives me even more,” Hill said.

“Maybe a little bit (jealous). But I’m proud of him as well. It just really drives me to hopefully be able to get there and have a premiership one day.”

With both Fremantle and Hawthorn nailing down top-four berths, the Hill brothers are a good chance to cross paths at some point during the finals.

Sydney were dealt a huge blow on Tuesday when star forward Lance Franklin was ruled out of Saturday’s clash to deal with an ongoing mental health condition.

The Swans will also be without gun midfielders Luke Parker (broken leg) and Kieren Jack (knee).

In contrast, Fremantle will welcome back a swag of stars this week after coach Ross Lyon rested 12 of his first-choice players against the Saints last Saturday.

Nat Fyfe (leg), Hayden Ballantyne (pectoral), and Michael Walters (calf) are on track to return from injury, while skipper Matthew Pavlich, Hill, Luke McPharlin, David Mundy, and Aaron Sandilands are among the players who will be fresh following last week’s rest.

Back-up ruckman Jon Griffin (hamstring) has been ruled out, paving the way for either Zac Clarke, Jack Hannath, or Matt Taberner to nail down a spot in the side.

Hill was viewed as somewhat of a risky selection when he was snared with pick No.3 in the 2008 national draft.

The safer bet at the time was fellow West Australian Daniel Rich, who ended up going to Brisbane with pick seven.

But Hill didn’t take long to repay Fremantle’s faith, with the silky-smooth midfielder now viewed as a star of the competition.

Hill’s growing reputation was further enhanced on Tuesday when he was named in the preliminary 40-man All-Australian squad.

“When I came to the club I was pretty light,” Hill said.

“The first thing they did was bulk me up and get me in the gym and got me to eat a lot.

“Because playing against bigger men – I had to get bigger to be able to match it with them.

“To be able to play one AFL game when I first started was a dream. And to be able to play the amount of games that I have now, I’ve been pretty fortunate.”

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