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'If Jake goes ... I assume it would help': Crameri

Dinny Navaratnam  October 12, 2017 9:25 AM

AFL 2017 Training - Western Bulldogs 130417

Out-of-contract Dog Stewart Crameri and coach Luke Beveridge

If Jake goes, I'm not sure where that sits for me. I assume it would help somewhat but I've just got to wait and see and find out probably at the end of Trade period, I'll sit down with (list manager) Jason McCartney and see what he thinks.

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THE WAITING game continues for out-of-contract Western Bulldogs forward Stewart Crameri, who will be forced to wait until the end of the NAB AFL Trade Period before learning where his future lies.

However, the imminent departure of premiership player Jake Stringer could make it more likely he stays at the club, and Crameri believes he has up to five years left in his career.

Crameri, 29, twice had surgery this year, after being sidelined 2016 with a drug ban as part of his time at Essendon. 

A dodgy hip meant he lined up in just the opening two games of the year.

Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge told Crameri his future would not be known until the Trade Period ended next Thursday.

"Some tough conversations obviously with 'Bevo'. Hard year, not playing and not playing the year before, so we couldn't discuss football necessarily, but it was more about what I want to do next year and where I want to go," Crameri told NAB AFL Trade Radio on Thursday. 

"He just said it's going to be a hard slog during Trade Period. We've got to wait and see what happens." 

Declaring he was "mentally refreshed", the former Bomber would be willing to move interstate if he was discarded by the Dogs. 

"It's just going to have to take another week and hopefully I can stay, but if not, I'd be more than happy to pursue my career at another club," Crameri said.

Stringer is contracted for 2018 but is likely on his way to Essendon. 

"If Jake goes, I'm not sure where that sits for me. I assume it would help somewhat but I've just got to wait and see and find out probably at the end of Trade period, I'll sit down with (list manager) Jason McCartney and see what he thinks," Crameri said. 

Retirement is not in Crameri's plans.

"I've actually started a little bit later in my career, so I think I've got at least three, four or five years left, so it would be disappointing not to get a chance next year," Crameri said. 

He began running in the last month and continues to his rehab at the Dogs' Whitten Oval base, after having suffered his original hip injury early in 2017. 

"It happened at the start of the year and I prolonged it (surgery). Should've got the operation at the start of the year but I waited too long and then the rest of the season was pretty much finished," Crameri said. 

Those issues are done with, in Crameri's mind. 

"I think I'm passed that and I'm really mentally refreshed and my body's refreshed, so I'd be really excited to play again next year. I'm just looking forward to getting past this period," Crameri said.

"It seems like it's dragged on forever really."

His path to another club will likely be as a delisted free agent. 

"I had interest (from other teams) initially, but I think in my case, if the club decided not to re-sign me, I'll be a delisted free agent so clubs will be interested after they find out what the go is with the Western Bulldogs, whether they take me or not," Crameri said. 

"As frustrating as it is, it's a waiting game really. I'm sure there are a couple of clubs out there that are interested, but we'll have to wait and see." 

He sees himself as being the same player who booted at least 30 goals between 2011-15.

"I haven't lost my ability so I'm pretty keen to get out there," Crameri said.

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