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Prestia set to re-sign with Gold Coast

Jennifer Phelan  May 26, 2013 5:25 PM

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Dion Prestia is poised to re-sign with Gold Coast

IN-FORM Gold Coast midfielder Dion Prestia says he will "most likely" sign a contract extension in the coming weeks.

Prestia, 20, admitted he had considered returning home to play for a Melbourne-based club with his contract to expire at the end of the season.

But, he said the Suns' recent improvement, reflected in their back-to-back wins over Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs and their strong showing against Hawthorn on Sunday, influenced his desire to remain a Sun.

"It was a bit of a temptation to come home but the boys have proven that they're definitely finals contenders, even maybe this year and definitely next year," Prestia told AFL.com.au after the Suns' 26-point loss to the Hawks at the MCG.

"Especially because I started here [with the Suns], you don't want to start something and then leave when the boys are winning games and pushing for finals as well.

"My management group is talking to the club now at the moment so in the next few weeks we'll decide something."

When asked if that decision would be to remain in the Sunshine State and in the red and gold, Prestia replied: "most likely"

He agreed the wheel was starting to turn for the Suns after a lean few seasons where the team won three games each year.

With four wins from nine games this season, he said it had given all the players encouragement that things were starting to shift in the right direction.

"That first year was pretty hard getting smashed every week by 100 points but the boys really like fighting out games," he said.

"Our pre-season was a lot more competitive than the first two pre-seasons, which probably set us up for a good year.

"We've already had our best year so hopefully the boys can get a few more wins before the bye and then finish off the season well."

Prestia was one of the Suns' best on Sunday with 33 disposals, six clearances and one goal.

"Dion was terrific," coach Guy McKenna said after the game.

"His ability to turn up at critical stages … you talk critical moments in games, when we were outnumbered and we needed someone to stand strong, I thought he did.

"He was super."

Prestia said the wins over the Demons and Dogs, in particular the former at the MCG a fortnight ago, had given the Suns belief before the clash with the Hawks.

They stayed with last year's grand finalists for a half before being heavily restricted with rotations after the main break with Jesse Lonergan (hamstring) subbed out and Steven May (corked quad) and Jared Brennan (knee) off injured.

"We've taken a lot of confidence from having our first win here two weeks ago and then backing it up again against the Bulldogs," he said.
"The Hawks are probably the best team in the competition at the moment.

"We matched it with them in the first half and it's just about us continuing that in the next few weeks, just really focusing on not letting them kick a few goals in a row and just getting the games on our terms."

Prestia also said defender Nathan Bock, who hasn't played since round six last year because of a badly broken leg, was inching closer to a return.

"'Bocky' has been training the past few weeks so hopefully he'll play a few games in the 'ressies' and come back better than ever," he said.

"He's been training with the main group and he had a good session on Thursday when we had our main session and he's looking really good so hopefully he'll be back soon."

Jennifer Phelan is a reporter for AFL Media. Follow her on Twitter @AFL_JenPhelan.