AN INVITATION from the president and a desire to escape from the city while at university lured Lachie Johns back to Minyip-Murtoa this season after three years away.
“I just thought it would be good to get back to the home club,” he said.
“It also gives me the best opportunity to enjoy my footy because I’ve got plenty of mates there and it’s an unreal club.
“I always thought at some stage I’d come back to the club but I thought I’d have a crack away from home.”
The 19 year-old started his football career at Horsham United before switching to Minyip-Murtoa to finish his junior career.
He then spent the 2015, 2016 and 2017 season at Waurbra in the Central Highlands Football League.
“We played a lot more wet weather footy at Waubra,” he said.
“This year I’ve already found things to move a lot faster and I’ve been playing on some handy players.
“You just don’t have as much time to use your possessions.”
Johns said he was initially unsure of how he would fit into the Burras side but he has rotated through the midfield and forward line in all six seniors games this season.
“I didn’t know where I would fit within the group but after a few rounds I sort of know where I am at and know what the coach expects of me,” he said.
“I’ve just got to knuckle down to get some consistent games on the board.
“It doesn't matter to me if I’m up forward or running through the middle – I just want to do everything I can for the team.”
Johns praised the way Damian Cameron coached a side that was looking to again play a big part in September.
“He doesn’t get too cross with you,” he said.
“He gives you a lot of help, a lot of instruction and just wants every player to be able to get the best out of themselves.”
The Burras sit fourth on the ladder after seven rounds having won three and lost three.
“We’ve had a few games which have been a bit of a wakeup call for us,” he said.
“Everyone knows there isn’t much between the top four or five sides. I think it will all come down to mentality – there have been a couple of games where we haven’t been switched on early enough and it has cost us.
“We know where we stand and we know what we need to do on the track and on Saturdays going forward.”
Whatever the results on the field Johns is going to continue enjoying his time back home at Minyip-Murtoa.
“There is so much mutual respect around the club – you could be junior, a senior player or a supporter, everyone has time for everyone else,” he said.
“It doesn’t matter what role you play, you are a part of the club and people appreciate you being there.
“You can have a chat to anyone and they’re all so easy going.”