Picken stays a Dog until 2017 AFL season

Western Bulldogs midfielder Liam Picken has signed a two-year AFL contract extension to stay at Whitten Oval.

Picken, 28, building a career at the Bulldogs as a tagger, has been reborn in 2015 as a ball-using midfielder under coach Luke Beveridge.

Signing on until the end of the 2017 season, Picken said he wanted to build on the club’s early-season improvement over the next three years.

“I’ve found a bit more balance in my game this year so I’m really enjoying my football at the moment and the side is really on the right path,” he said.

“It’s exciting times around the club, it’s been great while I’ve been here and, hopefully, the next few years are going to be just as exciting.”

Picken’s disposals, goals and tackles are up in 2015, with Bulldogs list manager Jason McCartney suggesting it encouraged the club to move on his contract.

“His on-field performance this year has been outstanding, and we look forward to seeing that continue,” he said.

“Liam’s experience is invaluable for our young list and his leadership skills continue to grow.”

Picken joins Bob Murphy, Jake Stringer and Easton Wood in signing new contracts at the club.

The Bulldogs sit 11th on the ladder but can leap inside the eight by defeating Brisbane on Saturday night.

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