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Howard signs on at Alberton until end of 2022

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 28:  Dougal Howard of the Power spoils a mark by Jack Ziebell of the Kangaroos during the round six AFL match between the North Melbourne Kangaroos and Port Adelaide Power at Etihad Stadium on April 28, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images/AFL Media)
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 28: Dougal Howard of the Power spoils a mark by Jack Ziebell of the Kangaroos during the round six AFL match between the North Melbourne Kangaroos and Port Adelaide Power at Etihad Stadium on April 28, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images/AFL Media)

PORT ADELAIDE defender Dougal Howard has signed a contract extension with the club which will see him remain at Alberton until the end of 2022.

Howard had his most consistent year in 2018, playing every game except the two he missed with a broken hand.

Originally drafted as a forward at pick 56 in the 2014 AFL National Draft, Howard has been recast as a mobile key defender, impressing with his aggression, speed and spoiling ability.

The 199-centimetre big man also spent time in the ruck in 2018 when required.

The Wagga Wagga product says he is thrilled to sign-on again with the Power.

“I have loved being in Adelaide and have some really good friends here so I see it as home,” Howard said.

“I’ve got some good friends who have also signed on at the club for an extended amount of years and I think the club is heading in the right direction.

“We’ve got the personnel and we’re bringing in some new guys this year to do some really good things, and I feel really positive about us having some real success this year and going forward.

“The length of my contract means I don’t need to worry about it for a while now and I can just focus on improving myself as a player and ensuring I am playing good footy.”

Howard was a mainstay in the Power defence in 2018, often playing on the opposition’s key forward and performing admirably.

He holds the competition record for spoils after having 22 one-percenters in a single game and General Manager - Football, Chris Davies says the 22-year-old has become an important part of the backline.

“Dougal’s size and pace are things we really like in our backline and we expect his continued development in the next few years,” he said.

“While he is still relatively inexperienced at AFL level, he has shown his potential in the games he’s played so far and he is an emerging leader amongst the playing group.”

Howard has played 30 AFL games since making his debut against Adelaide in Round 2, 2016.

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