Two-time Richmond premiership defender Nick Vlastuin has explained how this year’s flag differed to that of two years ago.
In 2017, the Tigers broke a 37-year premiership drought when knocking off the Adelaide Crows in the decider which was met with fervent celebrations and an outpouring of emotion such was the magnitude of the triumph.
Fast forward 24 months and the yellow and black did it again by demolishing GWS to the tune of 89 points which somewhat vindicated a dominant yet fruitless 2018 season while well and truly corroborating their 2019 efforts after a difficult beginning.
Vlastuin says that the experience of winning the first one was packed away for safekeeping, allowing the second achievement to be cherished in a slightly contrasting manner.
“It was good fun once again. This one was completely different to 2017,” Vlastuin said on SEN Summer Breakfast.
“First time we did it, everything was new, we wanted to touch everything.
“This one was more of a relief. We got to celebrate it with family and fans a little bit more.”
The 25-year-old also touched on the fact that six Tigers who were not involved in the 2017 Grand Final got the chance to taste the ultimate success.
“A lot of young boys who didn’t get to experience the first one as well,” he added.
“Lynchy (Tom Lynch), who is a massive part of our club already, Liam Baker and Jayden Short (plus Shai Bolton, Ivan Soldo and Marlion Pickett), it was pretty cool for them to play. And we got to watch them enjoy it as well, so a completely different feeling.”
What can sometimes coincide with holding aloft the Holy Grail is either complacency or a lack of incentive to return to the summit but Vlastuin insists that is simply not the case at Punt Road.
“I was probably more excited to get back (to training) because you know how fun it can be,” he said further.
“The off-season is fun because you get to do what you want but you want to get back into that routine and get around 40 of your mates.
“After the flag, you do get to build pretty special relationships. You want to be around those blokes more.
“This year I was looking forward to getting back more than any other year. The motivation is definitely still there.”
Listen to Vlastuin’s chat on SEN Summer Breakfast below: