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Touk ready to fight for Suns midfield spot

Michael Whiting  February 11, 2016 7:40 PM

AFL 2015 Training - Gold Coast 171215

Touk Miller is putting in extra work to meet extra challenges

AFTER a brilliant debut season, Gold Coast teenager Touk Miller has set the bar even higher ahead of 2016.                           

The 19-year-old wants a permanent spot in the Suns' midfield and isn't fazed by the fact four of the club's best players are returning from injury in that part of the ground.

Miller played all 22 games in his first season, starting as a pressuring half-forward and moving into the midfield late in the year as the club was decimated by injuries.

But winning a spot in the middle of the ground will not be so straightforward this year.

Sun wiping 'disappointing' 2015 from memory

Gary Ablett and Dion Prestia have both overcome their knee injuries and are flying in pre-season training, while David Swallow (knee) is set to rejoin the main group shortly.

Then there's Jaeger O'Meara, who should return from his horrific knee injury early in the season to complete the star quartet.

Throw in the likes of Michael Rischitelli, Jarrod Harbrow, Jesse Lonergan and Alex Sexton, and there's quite a logjam.

But none of it bothers Miller – he wants to take on all comers and earn his own spot.

"I could say I'd be happy to bide my time, but if I bide my time I won't be playing until I'm 28, so at the moment I want to push for it," he said.

"As long as I'm putting pressure on them, I'm holding them to account as well, which is really good for the club.

"I'm going to try my best to crack in."

Since the day he walked into Metricon Stadium just over 12 months ago, Miller had an assuredness about him.

He backed it up with a terrific season, averaging 17 disposals and five tackles a game, as well as kicking seven goals.

Already strongly built, the Victorian has worked hard on his fitness this pre-season and been a standout on the training track.

Miller knows he faces an uphill battle to win his prized position.

"I'm trying to put myself in that bracket of an elite midfielder in terms of my body and prepping myself for that role," he said.

"I guess the pressure is going to be there a lot more in trying to break into the team.

"I think with the blokes around me I can learn a bit more and really try and cement a spot there."