Jack Monigatti and Sam Smith in action

Jumping Jack and Leaping Sam sign on

05.12.18 16:29

Key players Jack Monigatti and Sam Smith have both extended their time with NT Thunder after the youngsters put pen to paper for the 2019 NEAFL season.

They were integral parts of the 2018 squad, Smith finishing third in the Club Champion and Monigatti, fifth in his first season with the NT team.

Twenty-two-year-old Smith, who is renowned for his flying defensive efforts, had an outstanding second year which saw him develop as a leader and a key player for the team.

NT Thunder Manager and former coach Andrew Hodges said Smith was a big target for the club to re-sign ahead of the 2019 season.

“It was pleasing to see that Sam saw the benefits in what the Thunder program can offer regarding his development and aspirations to go to a higher level.

“He is a quality player and more importantly a top young man,” Hodges said.

Monigatti, who came from playing with the Tiwi Bombers in the NTFL was one of only three players to play all 18 games for the Club in 2019.

Often up against bigger, more fancied opponents in the ruck, Hodges said Monigatti always gave 100 per cent.

“Jack’s ability to fit into the NT way of life with his easy natured demeanour and ability to build relationships with people from diverse backgrounds makes him an asset.

“He always gives his very best on and off the field, and I know our new head coach, Darren Reeves, is going to enjoy developing him further,” he said.

Reeves, who has had the opportunity to meet both players said he was thrilled to have them recommit for 2019 as they are an essential part of planning for next year.

“Sam had an outstanding season last year, and we are keen to challenge him to be better again in some different roles, which will see him putting his name forward to recruiting staff around the country.

“Jack is crucial in his role in the ruck, and with the opportunity to add to our group in this area it will allow him to at times play roles in defence and forward and help develop his game.

“Both are of great character, and we look forward to watching them improve again this year,” Reeves said.