St Kilda captain Nick Riewoldt says Michael Gardiner has been terrific all year, not just on Sunday against Geelong after the recruit from West Coast became the Saints' matchwinner with a goal in the last minute to seal the game.
"He hasn't taken his second chance just based on last night's game," Riewoldt said of Gardiner.
"I think he's been good for us all year and he has gone through a pretty rough journey with his body and a few other things but ever since he walked through the door at the club he has been really committed and people probably forget what a great player he was back in 2003 through to 2005 and he is starting to recapture some of that form now which is terrific for us."
Ben Cousins is delighted for friend and former teammate Michael Gardiner, who kicked the winning goal for St Kilda yesterday against the unbeaten Cats.
"For him to stand up the way he did in such a big game, I was just rapt for him," Cousins said.
"He kicked four in the ruck, has taken a couple of contested marks in the clinches of the game. It was just fantastic."
Cousins also made comment on the challenges Gardiner faced in his comeback to football after being traded by West Coast.
"He has come over to Melbourne in the circumstances he has and hasn't been able to get his body right, which, for a player, I don't think people quite realise how frustrating and hard that is," Cousins said.
"That's probably why he took it out on some of those off-field indiscretions and why that came to the surface.
"To see him get his body right and playing the footy he is in a great side is good to see."