Atkins’ Story of Persistence

As the old adage goes, good things come to those who wait.

Words couldn’t be truer in the case of Tom Atkins.

The Geelong VFL captain and two-time best and fairest winner finally found his way onto an AFL list on Friday, completing his five-year journey from VFL development squad member to the Cats’ senior list.

“It’s still a little bit hard to believe,” he says.

“It feels great. A big relief more than anything. There’s obviously still a lot of work to do but it’s just nice to be given the opportunity. I’m just very thankful that I’m in this position.”

The dogged midfielder received the news via a text message from Geelong’s talent ID manager Troy Selwood.

“I was actually in the car, driving from work. There was a bit of traffic in Geelong and I sort of knew it might happen around that 6 o’clock time but it started a bit earlier.

“I was just driving home I was in the car and I pulled up at home and checked my phone and Troy Selwood had messaged me and said it had officially been done. It was a big relief, it’s nice when it happens because you don’t really have to stress about it anymore.”

Twelve months earlier, Atkins had received a message of a different kind. Geelong GM of Football Simon Lloyd got in touch to offer some support as Atkins went undrafted for yet another year.

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