THE PAIN of narrowly missing out on Richmond's premiership glory over the past two seasons will drive St Kilda recruit Jack Higgins in his pursuit of the ultimate success.

Much-loved Higgins made the tough call to leave the AFL power club with one year to run on his contract, taking up an offer to join the Saints during the Trade Period.

It came after he missed last year's premiership because of brain bleeding, which required surgery and an extended stint out of the game.

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The 21-year-old made a successful comeback this year but was overlooked for the Tigers' finals series.

"It's driven me a bit," Higgins told reporters on Sunday.

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"Obviously I watched two Grand Finals, last year for (health) reasons and this year I didn't get picked, but I just really want to play in a Grand Final.

"I want to get some consistent games and hopefully be in St Kilda's second premiership team."

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Higgins played 10 games for Richmond this year, but managed just one after round 10, and cited greater playing opportunities as the key driver behind the decision to switch clubs.

He admitted feeling like a new draftee on arrival at St Kilda and primarily sees himself as a small forward with an ambition of moving into the midfield long-term.

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The childhood Saints fan is eager to work with Jade Gresham on the field after first meeting the gun midfielder while on work experience at the club as a high school student.

"It was a really hard decision for me to leave Richmond because it's such a great club with such good players and blokes there, and coaches," Higgins said.

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"But at the end of the day I thought St Kilda would be the best for my future and also I see how much the club's going to go up in an upwards spiral.

"They've got some really good young players and hopefully I can be part of that group and be together as a team for the next 10 years."

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Higgins is hopeful of joining St Kilda's young players for training before Christmas, with the main group to return in January.

He wants to complete a strong pre-season after last year's preparation was limited by his recovery from brain surgery.

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