LUKE Shuey lived his premiership dream after one of the great Grand Final performances, but the Norm Smith medallist isn't satisfied and says every West Coast player needs to improve to stay ahead of the chasing pack.
Shuey etched his name into folklore with 34 disposals, nine clearances, eight inside 50s and one goal against Collingwood, which was rated the best individual finals performance of the past decade by Champion Data.
While the star midfielder said becoming a premiership player was even better than he had ever imagined, Shuey wants to climb the mountain again and is determined to take his game to new heights.
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"That was one game. I didn't play like that every week – it would be nice to be able to do that every week," Shuey said of his Grand Final performance.
"For us to be successful as a club again, every guy needs to keep improving, therefore you improve as a team.
"We've seen over the years – obviously Hawthorn were a different kettle of fish – but it's so hard to defend a premiership a year later, so we need to improve as a team otherwise we'll get left behind.
"The stepping stones to get there as a footy club are individuals need to keep improving.
"I'm still in that frame of mind at 28, and a guy who I looked up to for so long, Matty Priddis, was doing that until he was 31 or 32 until he retired.
"Hopefully I can keep improving until I'm finished as a player."
Shuey is keen to move on from discussing the Grand Final but has chatted to another ex-teammate, Xavier Ellis, about the challenge of defending a premiership.
"Just speaking to him casually we were talking about how hard they (Hawthorn) found it in '09 to back up their 2008 season," Shuey said.
"Watching on the last few years you see how hard it is to perform that well again after winning a premiership, and Richmond were arguably the best team in the competition this year.
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"We understand how much work we need to put in and give ourselves a chance of playing some good finals footy next year."
Shuey was back at pre-season training early as he looks ahead to 2019, and the 177-game vice-captain was confident the playing group had reset their focus.
"It was great to see the other day our young guys come back in good nick and everyone seems really keen to get into training," Shuey said.
"Speaking to a few of the young boys, particularly guys like Liam (Ryan) and Dan Venables, who have already won a premiership at 19, 20 years old, they understand how lucky they were to be in that position.
"It's nice to know as a senior player they've got a bit of perspective that they know how hard they need to work to hopefully get back there one day."
While the Eagles face a shortened pre-season after the flag, almost the entire squad was on the track on Wednesday.
Elliot Yeo (toe) made a brief appearance alongside Nic Naitanui (ACL), spearhead Josh Kennedy (shoulder) and full-back Tom Barrass during warm-up.
Naitanui completed some light running exercises and goalkicking as he works his way back from a second knee reconstruction.
"He's had a smooth run so far, and touch wood that can continue, but he's in a great mindset," Shuey said.
"He always has been. The things he's been through in life he's got the ability to step back and see the bigger picture of everything."
Chris Masten and Liam Duggan (knee) ran laps, while Venables is in rehab after a knee scrape and wasn't sighted.