Kristian Jaksch (left) and Tom Boyd (right) of the Giants celebrate with teammates after defeating Carlton on Sunday. Photo: Getty Images
Carlton and the Western Bulldogs are among the clubs pursuing out-of-contract young Greater Western Sydney key defender Kristian Jaksch, trying to persuade the Victorian to return home.
Several Victorian clubs have shown strong interest in Jaksch, with Hawthorn also rating the young key back highly as a potential replacement for the veteran premiership player Brian Lake.
The Giants are confident of retaining Jaksch, who has been one of the young players who has faced the frustration of a lack of opportunities to play at senior level this year, encouraging rival clubs to believe he was a likely candidate to return home.
But Jaksch has played three of the past four games in the AFL and on Sunday performed well on highly rated Carlton swingman Lachie Henderson.
Jaksch is understood to be settled in Sydney and comfortable about remaining there if he continues to get opportunities to play senior football and the terms are right to stay. He is expected to talk with the club in the next month to six weeks about his future and a new contract.
Jaksch is among several Giants coming of contract who are seen as gettable by Victorian clubs. Pacy midfielder Dylan Shiel heads that list of players whom Victorian clubs are pursuing.
Shiel, who is contracted until the end of 2015, is regarded as the most accomplished of the players yet to re-sign with the Giants and clubs are hopeful of persuading him to return home in a similar trade to the one that enabled Dom Tyson return to Melbourne to play with the Demons this year.
Shiel’s girlfriend is the daughter of Richmond assistant coach – and former Giants coach – Mark Williams, and so his name is invariably linked with a move to Punt Road.
The market for difficult to find key defenders is intense, which explains the level of interest in Jaksch who is from Melbourne and went to school at Carey Grammar.
Several clubs eagerly await the next move by out-of-contract Demons defender James Frawley. A former All-Australian, Frawley has put off talks with Melbourne until the end of the year, heightening speculation he may choose to leave the club.