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Kangaroos lock in LDU for another two

Luke Davies-Uniacke was taken with pick No.4 in the 2017 NAB AFL Draft - AFL,North Melbourne Kangaroos,Luke Davies-Uniacke,Contracts
Luke Davies-Uniacke was taken with pick No.4 in the 2017 NAB AFL Draft

NORTH Melbourne has moved quickly to secure prized recruit Luke Davies-Uniacke, re-signing last year's No.4 draft pick until the end of 2021.

Davies-Uniacke joined North on the standard two-year draftee contract last November, but the club confirmed on Friday afternoon that the midfielder had signed a two-year contract extension. 

The former Dandenong Stingray made his first appearance in Kangaroos colours against Melbourne in the opening game of the JLT Community Series last Saturday, finishing with 12 possessions, eight of them contested. 

At 188cm and 85kg, the 18-year-old appears a readymade AFL player and the youngster said he was thrilled to extend his stay.

"I’m rapt. I’m absolutely stoked. I’ve loved every minute at North and I can’t wait to see what the future holds," he told nmfc.com.au.

"I’ve now got to put my head down and try and cement a spot in the side."

North coach Brad Scott told AFL.com.au last month Davies-Uniacke was firmly in the frame to debut in round one against Gold Coast, but said the club was mindful of not putting unrealistic expectations on the midfielder. 

"Luke has had a really good pre-season. All of our senior players watch him move at training and they know that he's got some special traits," Scott said.

"He's quite tall for a midfielder, he's quite strong for his age and he's very strong marking above his head. I've been really impressed with how coachable Luke is too; he's very keen to learn and he's thriving in a full-time environment. 

"So to look at him you would think he was ready but it takes a very, very rare player to go in and play right from the start – even Joel Selwood didn't play every game in his first year. 

"I'm really conscious that he's 18. We would love Luke to push in and play a fair amount of footy for us this year but that will largely depend on the availability of our list and how Luke's handling the expectation.

"I think we've got to be careful with the expectation that we put on him."