Ryan Lester's 1000 Career Possesssions

Ryan Lester has reached a milestone that has proven beyond three-quarters of the entire playing list of the Brisbane Lions Football Club.

Lester, in sixth season at the Lions and playing his 63rd game against North Melbourne at the Gabba last Sunday, reached 1000 career possessions.

He is the 66th player in Bears/Lions history to reach this milestone.

As much as this pales into insignificance in comparison to Simon Black’s club record 7580, there are 226 Bears/Lions players (77.4%) who fell short of it. And that’s not counting those who were drafted or signed by the club and did not play at the top level.

Only six of Lester’s 2016 teammates have registered more possessions for BBFFC – Captain Tom Rockliff (3,118), Vice-Captain's Daniel Rich (2,363), Pearce Hanley (2,302), Daniel Merrett (1,890) and Dayne Zorko (1,641), plus Rohan Bewick (1,077).

Five other 2016 Lions, recruited from other club's, have a career total beyond 1,000 - Dayne Beams (3,129), Ryan Bastinac (2,374), Mitch Robinson (2,369), Allen Christensen (1,724) and Stefan Martin (1,552).

At 23, Lester, a product of Glen Waverley Secondary College in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs and the Oakleigh Chargers in the TAC Cup, is one of the Lions longest-serving players.

When he was taken at No. 28 in the 2010 National Draft only five members of the current playing list were at the club – Merrett, Hanley, Rich, Rockliff and Ryan Harwood. Josh Green followed four spots later in the same draft.

Lester debuted against Fremantle at the Gabba in Round 1 2011, collecting 16 possessions, and has a career-high of 27 possessions in his 24th game against Sydney at the SCG in 2013.

Predictably, the top 10 all-time leading possessions winner's for the club is a list dominated by players from the golden era of the 2001-02-03 premierships. It is:

Simon Black - 7,580
Michael Voss - 6,143
Nigel Lappin - 5,911
Luke Power - 5,884
Marcus Ashcroft - 5,858
Shaun Hart - 4,522
Jason Akermanis - 4,517
Jonathan Brown - 3,696
Jed Adcock - 3,604
Chris Scott - 3,563

Interestingly, though, the average possession count tosses up a largely different list.

Using 15 games as a minimum qualification, prized 2015 recruit Dayne Beams heads this list at 28.19 possessions per game, followed by captain Rockliff at 26.20.

The top 10 average possession-winners in Bears/Lions history (minimum 15 games) is:

Dayne Beams (16 games)  - 28.19
Tom Rockliff (119) – 26.20
Brad Dalziell (15) – 23.80
Adrian Fletcher (107) – 23.58
Simon Black (322) – 23.54
Mark Withers (36) – 23.17
Nathan Buckley (20) – 22.90
Jack Redden (129) – 21.81
Craig Lambert (96) – 21.68
Geoff Raines (59) – 21.64.

Hanley (21.12 from 109 games), Robinson (20.91 from 22), Zorko (20.01 from 82) and Christensen (19.96 from 24) are all ranked between 10th and 20th on the average possessions list.

If the minimum qualification is 50 games, excluding Beams, Dalziell, Withers and Buckley, then the top 10 comprises Rockliff, Fletcher, Black, Redden, Lambert, Geoff Raines, Michael Voss (21.26 from 289 games), Danny Noonan (21.22 from 55 games), Nigel Lappin (21.19 from 279 games) and Hanley (21.12 from 109 games).

Source: Brisbane Lions

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