IT has been a flying start for Kieran Delahunty and the Perth Demons in the Western Australian Football League.
Delahunty collected 11 disposals and booted two goals on Saturday as the Demons made it two consecutive wins to start the season.
The Minyip-Murtoa product said he was ecstatic just to be back playing football, after the COVID-19 pandemic delayed the season until mid-July.
"It's just nice to be back playing after a nine month pre-season," he said.
"Getting back into it and starting 2-0, it's the perfect start really."
Delahunty made the move to Perth after playing with the Northern Territory Thunder in the NEAFL last year.
The 2014 Toohey medallist said COVID-19 and the season's delay had made the transition more difficult.
"It was pretty tough, I'm not going to lie," he said.
"Having just moved over to Perth, my girlfriend Lily and I had just started to meet people, getting to social events, and were really keen for the season to start.
"Having to go back into lockdown, that was challenging. But we've come out of it well now, and it's just good to be back playing sport again."
With only eight games to be played in a shortened season, two wins have also put Perth in a terrific position to chase history.
The club recruited the likes of former West Coast Eagle and AFL premiership player Chris Masten during the off-season to help break its 23-year finals drought.
"It's obviously a long way to go, but you just have to keep winning games this year. There's no room for error," Delahunty said.
"We had our first home game on the weekend and had 2,500 supporters, which is a really good turnout.
It's fair to say if we can keep this winning streak going, hopefully the fans can keep coming out of the woodwork and supporting us.Kieran Delahunty
Delahunty said the standard of football in the WAFL had been a step-up in quality, particularly as shortened 16-minute quarters seemed to speed the game up.
He said it had given him even more respect for the achievements of his cousin Lachlan Delahunty, who won the Sandover Medal as the league's best and fairest last season.
"It just shows what a huge effort that was from Lachie," he said.
"It's certainly quicker and more intense.
"It's taken a couple of weekends to adjust to, hopefully I can just keep improving."
But beyond any personal achievements this year, Delahunty said he was simply grateful to be back playing football - particularly as he keeps one eye on the Wimmera.
"At the moment, it's just great to be out there and playing," he said.
"Normally you can sort of bank on organising something up for a bye round, getting back home and watching the Burras play on a Saturday.
"Obviously we can't do that at the moment. Hopefully it all clears up in Vic soon and we can come back shortly."
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