Star midfielder and Swans co-captain Luke Parker has won his third Bob Skilton Medal, joining club legends Adam Goodes, Gerard Healy and Josh Kennedy who have all taken out the best and fairest honour three times.
Parker received 543 votes for his performances over the season, 42 votes ahead of Swans 2020 best and fairest Jake Lloyd (504 votes). In his third year as co-captain, Parker played 23 games of the 2021 season, with an impressive average of 28 disposals per game.
In what he described to Swans Media as a "bittersweet" season, Parker said looking back on the year he was grateful for the "memories and the highlights" he shared with his team.
"Some of the wins we have had have been incredible. Whether coming from behind or when unfortunately, some of the boys got put into quarantine and the way the group handled that situation, it just puts a smile on your face," Parker said.
Luke Parker has won his third Bob Skilton Medal 👏
— AFL (@AFL) September 2, 2021
Since his senior debut in 2011 Parker has played 235 games, kicked 176 goals, earned an All Australian selection, a premiership medal and now has three Bob Skilton Medals to his name.
The co-captain said he loved his role, particularly working with and playing alongside the young, upcoming players.
"I love seeing blokes grow, I look at Rowy (James Rowbottom), Chad, Errol and Braeden, knowing I was in that position and the growth and expertise that Adam Goodes, Jude Bolton and Jarrad McVeigh gave me when I was first at the club," Parker said.
Parker said he has formed "special relationships" with the young team which he and the club will "build" and "continue to grow" into the near future. He hopes to mentor the young Swans the same way past teammates, including Goodes, did to him.
"They helped me get to the level I am at now and I just want to help these young guys along the way and make them become the best player they can possibly be," he said.
Other outstanding achievements from fellow teammates were also celebrated at the 2021 Sydney Swans Club Championship Awards, with Irish defender Colin O'Riordan taking out the Best Clubman Award and young midfielder Justin McInnerney being named Sydney's Most Improved Player for the season.
2021 Sydney Swans Club Championship Awards:
Paul Kelly Player's Player- Luke Parker
Barry Round Best Clubman Award - Colin O'Riordan
Dennis Carrol Award, Most Improved- Justin McInerney
Rising Star Award- Errol Gulden
VFL Player of the Year - Lewis Taylor
VFL Squad Player of the Year - Adam Gulden