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Ex-AFL star Steven Motlop joins North Warrnambool

Jackson Clark -

Ex-AFL player Steven Motlop will ply his trade in Victoria this season after signing with Hampden Football League club North Warrnambool.

Motlop will join former Cats teammate and close friend Nathan Vardy, who is the senior coach of the Eagles.

North Warrnambool vice-president Shane Grundy told News Corp that it was the pair's close friendship with the coach that led to the signing.

"He's been close friends with Nathan (Vardy) since the Geelong AFL days and regularly kept in touch with him," Grundy said.

"And we've been able to sign him up this year – it's a major coup for the club and the league.

"The league has been strong the past couple of years but we can only hope and dream (of premiership success with him)."

The club has not tasted premiership glory since the 1997 season, but have lost back-to-back grand finals to Koroit (2022) and South Warrnambool (2023).

Motlop played 217 games and kicked 229 goals for Geelong and Port Adelaide over a 14-year AFL career.

Since retiring from the AFL, Motlop has spent the past two seasons in the Northern Territory Football League with Wanderers and PINT.

He produced an excellent season last year with Wanderers, which culminated in a 12-goal haul against the Tiwi Bombers late in the season.

The 32-year transferred to PINT at the beginning of the 2023/24 NTFL season to join his brother and North Melbourne premiership player Shannon Motlop, who is the senior coach of the club.

The classy midfielder-forward has averaged over 23 disposals per game in the NTFL this season, including a 40-disposal (35 kicks) performance against the Tiwi Bombers in Round 8 and a 37-disposal effort the following week against Palmerston.

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