GOLD Coast has re-signed Rory Thompson for a further four seasons, confident the injured defender can return to his best as a key pillar in the Suns' rebuild.
Thompson, who was due to come out of contract at the end of the 2019 season, has inked a new deal until 2023.
The 28-year-old ruptured the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee prior to the season and won't play at all in 2019.
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The Southport local is hopeful of repaying the Suns' faith, despite the injury setback.
"It was unfortunate what happened after I'd put together a solid block of training, but I've commenced my rehab and I'm looking forward to working through that over the coming months," Thompson told the club's website.
"I'm really enjoying the environment here at the club and as a Gold Coaster I had no hesitations in committing my long-term future to the Suns.
"Having grown up 10 minutes away from Metricon Stadium, it's a great privilege to be able to represent my home city, playing the game I love, on a national stage, it's something I never thought would be possible when I first started playing AFL.
"I'm grateful for the opportunities the club have provided me, and I want to do everything I can behind the scenes to help drive us forward."
Thompson managed 17 games last season and finished fourth in
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the club's best and fairest award, with his role sure to be a significant one following the departures of Tom Lynch and Steven May.
He has played 103 AFL games since making his debut against Sydney at Metricon Stadium in round 16, 2011.