Bailey Humphrey celebrates a goal during Gold Coast's clash against West Coast in round nine, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

BAILEY Humphrey has picked up right where he left off in 2023, with an impressive outing at Gold Coast training on Friday.

In hot and humid conditions at the Suns' Carrara headquarters, Humphrey caught the eye when 40 minutes of match simulation took place during the lengthy session.

Sam Flanders was another to shine, looking set to continue a full-time midfield role that saw him average 29 disposals over the final 10 rounds of last season.

During a session that lasted more than two hours, the Suns continued to work on the gameplan of new coach Damien Hardwick during two, 20-minute contested sessions.

Humphrey, who is noticeably leaner after playing 19 games in his debut season, rarely fumbled in traffic, scooping the ball up one-handed on numerous occasions.

The 19-year-old also showed nimble footwork in traffic as he split time between half-forward and the midfield.


With former chairman Tony Cochrane and already-qualified Paris Olympic triathlete Matt Hauser on hand to watch, Hardwick also showed off some positional changes.

Alex Sexton is impressing in a new role at half-back, where he can use his penetrating right foot kick to great use, while Darcy Macpherson and Ben Long are being trialled as pressure forwards.

Bodhi Uwland is pressing hard for a spot as a small defender and played well.

Wil Powell showed no lingering effects of the ankle injury that cut last season short, with a commanding showing in the back half.

Wil Powell in action at Gold Coast training on January 15, 2024. Picture: Getty Images

Jed Walter, who had successful surgery on his broken collarbone on Wednesday, and Mac Andrew (head knock earlier in the week) were two of the notable absentees, along with Lachie Weller (knee).

Gold Coast starts its pre-season campaign in less than three weeks with a trip to Springfield to face Queensland rivals Brisbane in a match simulation on February 22.