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Mike Pyke

Last played for Sydney Swans in 2015
Games: 110     Born: March 24, 1984     Origin: Canada
Playing Height: 201cm     Playing Weight: 104kg     Position: Ruck
First Drafted: Round 4, Pick #57 2008 Rookie Draft by Sydney Swans
Last Drafted: Round 6, Pick #101 2010 National Draft by Sydney Swans
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Mike Pyke Biography

Friday, 25 November 2016
Mike Pyke says he will closely follow the career of fellow Canadian and No.1 draft pick Andrew McGrath.

"Everything I've read about him points to him being a class act," Pyke said.

"I'm sure someone of his talent will attract a lot of interest back home."

Friday, 16 October 2015
Mike Pyke announces his retirement, ending one of the most extraordinary stories in the game.

On Friday, the always-understated big man tweeted a photo of his boots hanging up inside his locker at the SCG, signalling his career was over.

A knee injury hampered his output in 2015 and limited Pyke to just 18 games, but he still formed a formidable pairing with Kurt Tippett, and played in the Swans' two finals losses to the Dockers and North Melbourne.

"I’m very appreciative of the support the Sydney Swans have given me," Pyke said.

"Thanks to the Swans supporters out there for supporting me, and cheering loudly when I kicked a goal, or came off the ground and for making a joke about being Canadian.

"I always appreciated it and always loved it."

Thursday, 4 June 2015
Mike Pyke will play in his 100th game for Sydney against Gold Coast this week.

The former rugby player says his 100th AFL game milestone is as much a vindication of Sydney Swans coach John Longmire's faith as justification for his gamble in switching codes.

"I think it's probably sometimes a big risk for 'Horse' (Longmire) every weekend when he picks me," he said.

"I think the milestone is sort of vindication for his patience (with me)."

Tuesday, 23 September 2014
Mike Pyke signs a two-year contract extension to remain with the Swans despite Sydney losing the Cost of Living Allowance.

"Sometimes it takes time. I think losing COLA threw a big spanner in the works, so that changed a lot of things in terms of planning for the club," Pyke said.

"That was the biggest element, things got stalled because of that."

Thursday, 17 July 2014
Cameron Wood has come from the clouds to play his first game this season in a shock selection move ahead of Friday night's clash against North Melbourne at Etihad Stadium.

The Blues have selected the former Collingwood big man, who has spent 2014 in the VFL, dropping Robert Warnock after he was convincingly beaten by Sydney Swans opponent Mike Pyke in round 17.

Sunday, 13 July 2014
Mike Pyke sets a new career-high with 53 hit-outs in the Swans' 71-point belting of the Blues.
Friday, 24 January 2014
Mike Pyke will cap a remarkable journey on Sunday when the Canadian native becomes an Australian citizen.

"It's been quite a journey the last six years and I probably didn't expect to become an Australian citizen," Pyke said.

"But (my wife and I have) felt very at home for the last few years and it's a big step in our life.

"We've had a son here now, Jorge, so it's nice to join him and to know you're being embraced by the country you've lived in for six years."

Thursday, 28 November 2013
Former Tiger Tom Derickx hopes to challenge Mike Pyke for Sydney's ruck spot in 2014.

"With a mature body and a couple of pre-seasons behind me, I think I'm ready for the step up (to senior football)," Derickx said.

"I think I just need to compete hard with Pykey. I'm not here to be the second man, I'm here to compete with Mike and be the best I can be."

Monday, 3 June 2013
Mike Pyke leads the competition with 26 contested marks while his 12 goals for the season thus far has him second among goal-scoring ruckmen.

"They're the sort of stats which stack up and make a case for All Australian ruckman," former Sydney coach Paul Roos said.

"If you look at his record and ask what do you want from a ruckman? it's really impressive. He's a dangerous marking forward target who can kick goals."

Tuesday, 30 October 2012
Sydney Swans history-maker Mike Pyke has agreed to a new two-year deal with the club.

"Signing a new contract is very important to me," Pyke said.

"I feel like the Swans are my Australian family. There are so many people that I look up to and feel comfortable to confide in at the club, so to play for a club like this is something really special.

"Since my arrival at the club, my number one priority for every session has been to improve.

"I still feel like I have plenty of development left in me and hopefully I can add a few more strings to my bow next year."

Sunday, 30 September 2012
Sydney ruckman Mike Pike took a risk moving from Canada to Australia but now has a premiership medal hanging around his neck after helping the Swans defeat the Hawks in the 2012 Grand Final.

"I never imagined I would be in a premiership side,'' the 26-year-old said.

"I was told by my manager (Michael Quinlan) the Swans were one of the best sides in the league but we were falling away from the 2005-2006 success."

Thursday, 27 September 2012
Mike Pyke is on the verge of creating history as the first Canadian to play in the Grand Final and has put contract talks on hold to concentrate on his football until after the finals.

"The second the finals started, I just said I wanted to concentrate on football and my manager has been doing everything," he said.

"Something was written on Saturday or Sunday about me being the first Canadian in a Grand Final and I was like 'shit, the team hasn't been picked yet. I better be. My mum has booked her flight'."

Monday, 20 August 2012
Coach John Longmire admits he's been pleasantly shocked at Mike Pyke's transformation into a key member of the Sydney Swans' line-up.

"He just keeps getting better, which is a credit to him. He's come into the game at such a late age and his ability to learn and listen and implement is second to none, really," Longmire said.

"If you had asked me [at the start of the year], whether we'd be going with two genuine rucks [at this point of the season], I'd have probably said no. But he's been able to hold his spot through consistent performances and really contribute."

Tuesday, 17 July 2012
John Longmire has praised the form of ruckman Mike Pyke after the Canadian and fellow Swan ruckman matched it win the highly lauded West Coast ruck tandem of Dean Cox and Nic Naitanui in Sydney's 52-point win over the Eagles.

"He didn't have that grounding of AFL football until 25 years of age, so had to cram it all in and he's a magnificent crammer," Longmire said.

"He's a real professional with the amount of time he sits there and watches the game, but also his ability to learn. I think he probably gets a bit underestimated with the challenge he has been able to overcome."

Monday, 16 July 2012
Mike Pyke says teammate Shane Mumford sets the standard at the club during training.

"He didn't have the pre-season he would have wanted to have had. His knee was crumbling away or something along those lines, so he didn't get the start he would have liked," Pyke said.

"But he has certainly played himself into some form now. He really puts pressure on guys and runs them hard and works them really hard in the contest, so he sets a standard for the club in the ruck division and we just try to follow him."

Saturday, 21 January 2012
Mike Pyke is determined to cement his spot in the Swans' line-up, which may mean more time playing forward.

"That new ruck/forward role is really taking shape in the AFL, and a lot of people are saying there is not going to be two ruckmen anymore, so I need to add that extra forward string to the bow," he said.

"I think we saw last year the return of the big pack marks, so as a big guy, you have got to have good hands and be able to take grabs so that's probably number one on the priority list."

Wednesday, 17 August 2011
Swans ruckman Mike Pyke is stunned by the level of involvement in the International Cup after addressing a number of teams from various countries during a clinic.

"There's a lot of passion with the players here and they're really enthusiastic about what's happening," Pyke said.

"I had a chance to speak to all the countries the other day and they're really passionate about the game, so it's encouraging the game is growing a bit internationally. To come to Australia is great in itself and then to be involved in international competition is even more exceptional."

Wednesday, 4 August 2010
Canadian Mike Pyke has been rewarded for his form with a two-year deal from the Swans.

"I am really happy - it gives me an opportunity to feel settled in Sydney and I'm very excited to be put on the senior list," he said.

"Now I need to work on having a sustained impact in games. I've had patches this season where I've been contributing quite well, and patches where I go missing a little bit.

"I've showed that I'm capable of playing but to become really successful you have to do more than that, and that's what I'll be working on in the next two years.''

Friday, 23 July 2010
Canadian ruckman Mike Pyke feels he has done enough in 10 games this year as Shane Mumford's back-up to earn a new contract for 2011.

"I think now I've proven I can hold a second ruck role. I'm learning where to go on the field and when to be there, so hopefully the club comes to the decision to keep me on, and that's what I want to do," he said.

"I guess if it doesn't work out here, you have to look to all options available. At the moment though, I'm very happy in Sydney and this is where I want to stay."

Wednesday, 2 June 2010
Jarrad McVeigh says a successful swith to Australian Rules is possible, as rugby union international-turned Sydney Swan Mike Pyke shows.

"Seeing Pykey first-hand, he really wants to learn and that's the first key component. He's always asking questions, always working on his skills every day," McVeigh said.

"He knows he has to do that so if [Folau and Gold Coast's Karmichael Hunt] can have the work ethic of Pykey, it will go a long way."

Friday, 14 May 2010
Former rugby union international Mike Pyke says rugby league players Karmichael Hunt and Israel Folau can perform at a high standard in the AFL.

"Money probably is a bit of a motivating factor but you have to understand, these are competitive guys," he said.

"They're not going to come across and cop it from the media. They'll do everything they can to the highest level. They're not going to just sit back and watch themselves become the laughing stock of the AFL.

"I don't think it's guaranteed, but they'll do everything to make themselves successful."

Wednesday, 13 May 2009
Sydney Swans coach Paul Roos says he may shield Canadian recruit Mike Pyke from facing West Coast ruckman Dean Cox.

"We've got to be careful with him. Throwing him in against Dean Cox at this stage is probably just a bit big an ask for him," Sydney coach Paul Roos said.

"I thought he was good last week, so it certainly wouldn't be a form thing but an educational thing. We need to make sure he doesn't go backwards in his footy education."

Friday, 1 May 2009
Swans ruckman Mike Pyke, a Canadian rugby international, is looking forward to his return to the big stage after being selected to make his AFL debut against Richmond.

"It's been a while since I've played a first-class sports game so that's the thing that I'm most excited about - to play in front of a good crowd, a good atmosphere and I think for any athlete at the highest level, that’s what they want to do," Pyke said.

"I'm excited. I'm confident that I know the role I’m expected to play. That's important - going into the game and knowing what's expected of you and I feel confident I can do it."

Swans coach Paul Roos expects AFL clubs to widen their recruiting scope after Canadian rugby convert Mike Pyke makes his debut.

"Mike would say it himself - he's not the only six-foot-six athletic guy running around in the world today who's possibly looking for a sport," Roos said.

"I don't think it's going to spark a mass interest of people coming but I think it will spark some interest from a lot of clubs in Australia to look offshore.

"Particularly with two new teams coming in, there's a lot of incentive to do different things at the moment."

Thursday, 30 April 2009
Former rugby international Mike Pyke's rise to play with the Sydney Swans is unprecedented.
Tuesday, 14 April 2009
Canadian rugby convert Mike Pyke comes into calculation for selection in the Swans' senior side.

Sydney coach Paul Roos confirmed yesterday that Pyke, who has continued to improve in the reserves, could be in the side to meet Carlton on Saturday at the SCG.

Wednesday, 25 March 2009
Canadian rugby international Mike Pyke is a step closer to an AFL debut after being elevated from the rookie list.
Sunday, 15 March 2009
Former Canadian Rugby Union player, Mike Pyke produces another surprisingly polished display for the Swans.
Monday, 9 March 2009
Sydney coach Paul Roos has indicated Jesse White has the edge over former Canadian rugby international Mike Pyke in the race to be the club's No. 1 ruckman.
Monday, 23 February 2009
It was a tough introduction to the AFL for the Sydney Swans' Canadian recruit Mike Pyke.

It took him until the third quarter to get his first possession and that was only after he'd handed a free kick and subsequent goal away to Port Adelaide when he appeared unaware of the pre-season rule on kicking backwards.

Craig Bolton believes Mike Pyke could play senior football this year, though he worries he could inadvertently hurt opponents.

Wednesday, 18 February 2009
Rhys Shaw will make his debut for the Swans alongside former Canadian rugby union player Mike Pyke against Port Adelaide on Sunday.
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