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Josh Dunkley

Age: 22yr 9mth    Games: 66     Born: January 9, 1997     Origin: Gippsland Power
Height: 190cm     Weight: 88kg     Position: Midfield, Forward
Last Drafted: Round 2, Pick #25 2015 National Draft by Western Bulldogs
Supercoach Price: $659,100   Supercoach Profile
AFL Fantasy Price: $818,000   AFL Fantasy Profile
Contract Status: Out of contract at the end of 2022   AFL Player Contracts
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Josh Dunkley Biography

Sunday, 14 July 2019
Western Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge says Josh Dunkley has come of age as a full-time midfielder in 2019.

"Early in the year he was probably about 50-50, forward and midfield, and obviously we had some depth through there … (but) we felt like we needed an adjustment," Beveridge said.

"It was Josh's time to spend more time in there and he just hasn't looked back, which is tremendous for him and us as a team. They really need to shoulder a load at the moment and he sets a fine example"

Tuesday, 18 June 2019
Josh Dunkley signs a new deal with the Western Bulldogs to remain at the club until the end of 2022.

"He has taken his game to a new level this year," Bulldogs list manager Sam Power said of Dunkley.

"He is an emerging leader within our group, and someone who is selfless in his approach on-field.

"We have seen Josh become a really reliable performer week-to-week, with his hardness around the contest and ability to find the ball consistently making him an important part of our midfield mix."

Sunday, 12 August 2018
Josh Dunkley is relishing the opportunity to play in the midfield in a run-with role for the Bulldogs.

"I've always dreamt of being one of those midfielders," Dunkley said of the players he has had to mind.

"It's a great experience because you're playing against some of the best players in the competition. They take you to the footy and I've been able to work off them."

Luke Beveridge was effusive in his praise after Dunkley collected a career-high 33 disposals in the Dogs' win over St Kilda last week.

"Every now and then a player steps up really quickly, but his game has reached new heights really, really quickly," Beveridge said.

"He's had a couple of roles on the opposition's key players in the previous month and he's really blossomed from there."

Tuesday, 10 July 2018
Ben McEvoy is ruled out for up to six weeks following surgery to repair a fractured cheekbone after a nasty clash with Bulldog Josh Dunkley.
Saturday, 7 July 2018
Ben McEvoy is sent to hospital after fracturing his cheekbone following a clash with Bulldogs midfielder Josh Dunkley and is expected to be sidelined for several weeks.
Wednesday, 6 December 2017
Josh Dunkley will wear retired Bulldog great Matthew Boyd's No.5 jumper in 2018.

"The player that he was, not only on field but off field as well," Dunkley said.

"The first day at the footy club, he took me under his wing straight away. It's just a massive honour to wear his number."

Friday, 10 November 2017
After having his 2017 season ruined by injury, Josh Dunkley is seeking some of the good fortune that saw him become a premiership player in his debut season.

"I've seen the best and worst of footy, so hopefully there's a bit more luck coming back my way," Dunkley said.

"It was pretty traumatic doing my shoulder last year, even though I ended up getting back towards the end of the season.

"But I've come back refreshed, fit and healthy and really excited about what the future holds."

Tuesday, 13 June 2017
Josh Dunkley signs a two-year contract extension with the Bulldogs that will keep at the club until the end of 2019.

"Josh has made an impressive start to his AFL career and we’re thrilled to see him extend his contract with the club," Bulldogs list manager Jason McCartney said.

"His development in such a short time at the Bulldogs has been terrific, and clearly his upside is enormous for such a young player."

Saturday, 15 April 2017
The AFL has ticked off the controversial umpiring decision that saw Josh Dunkley awarded a free kick in the dying seconds of the third quarter in the Bulldogs' three-point win against North Melbourne for being infringed upon in a ruck contest.

It appeared Marcus Bontempelli nominated to be the Bulldog ruckman in the third term contest, as he raised his right hand before Dunkley lifted both arms in the air, while Roo Andrew Swallow kept Dunkley away from North ruckman Todd Goldstein.

However, match audio confirmed Dunkley was first to say he would be the one to contest against Goldstein, before any indication came from Bontempelli.

Following that, Bontempelli put his hand up and the umpire refused the cue.

Swallow and teammate Jamie Macmillan pointed to the big screen and remonstrated after the free kick, saying Bontempelli was the ruck contestant.

However the umpire is heard to say "he'd already nominated" in reference to Dunkley.

The young Bulldog pushed his shot wide and his side trailed at the final break by two points.

Saturday, 1 October 2016
From the committee room of the Melbourne Cricket Club, Andrew Dunkley watched his son, Josh Dunkley, win a premiership in his first year with the Bulldogs.

"It's easier playing than what it is watching that's for sure," Andrew Dunkley said.

"We're a very proud family. Josh has worked his butt off to get to where he has and it's a credit to him. It's his first year of (AFL) footy and he's a premiership player, it's pretty exciting isn't it?"

Wednesday, 28 September 2016
Josh Dunkley spent most of his draft year undecided on whether he wanted to play for the Swans, the club his father Andrew represented in 217 games.

But while Dunkley eventually nominated the Swans as a potential destination via the father-son rule in the 2015 NAB AFL Draft, many were surprised when the club failed to match the Bulldogs' second-round bid for the midfielder.

However, it has now been revealed that rather than going cold on the 189cm midfielder, the Swans had agreed to do what they could to keep him close to his family in Yarram, country Victoria.

Less than 12 months later, the 19-year-old will run out onto the MCG for the Bulldogs against the Sydney Swans in a Grand Final.

While the football world expected the Swans to match any bid that came for the AFL academy graduate, a deal had been struck to try to keep Dunkley in Melbourne to be closer to his family home in Yarram, four hours east of Melbourne.

A recruiter, who wished to remain anonymous and is not affiliated with the Swans or Bulldogs, revealed why the Swans became the first club not to match a bid on a father-son prospect.

"The family was pretty keen to see Josh stay in Melbourne and the Swans understood that," the recruiter said.

"The Swans agreed not to match a bid from a (Victorian) club for him, only if (the bid) came from a side outside Victoria.

"It's fair to say (the Dunkleys) were very happy when Josh ended up at the Dogs."

Monday, 8 August 2016
Josh Dunkley is the round 20 NAB AFL Rising Star nominee after collecting 19 disposals, including 3 clearances, in the Bulldogs' 14-point over North Melbourne.

Dunkley said playing alongside childhood friend Lukas Webb for the first time at AFL level was a special moment for him.

"It was pretty special running out for our first AFL game. We've been mates for a long time so it was pretty awesome having him alongside me in the change rooms," Dunkley said.

"We gave each other a massive hug and it was all smiles in the rooms after the game."

Dunkley and Webb are old high school friends, having attended Gippsland Grammar in Sale together before Webb moved to Caulfield Grammar in Melbourne in year 11.

"We'd played a lot of footy over the journey so we built that relationship straight away. I don't know how it really happened – two boys met, I suppose. And we've kept in contact ever since," Dunkley said.

"To end up at the same club is amazing. We sit next to each other in the locker room, as well.

"It's a bit surreal, it's a like a fairytale really."

Wednesday, 6 April 2016
Former Swan Andrew Dunkley says the pressure placed on a teenager and his family by the father-son bidding system is unfair.

Dunkley's son, Josh Dunkley, had nominated the Swans as his preferred destination under the father-son rule but Sydney declined to match the Bulldogs' bid of pick No.25 in last year's NAB AFL Draft.

"The process is a bit over the top because we have to remember they're only kids," Andrew Dunkley said.

"To go through the whole process was a bit awkward, but it's worked out beautifully because the Bulldogs are an excellent club to be involved in.

"Josh is enjoying himself; he's very happy and deserves everything he gets because he's worked so hard.

"And the beauty of him remaining in Victoria is we can watch him most weeks."

Josh Dunkley's solid pre-season was rewarded with a round one debut for the Bulldogs against Fremantle, and the midfielder has impressed with his ability to adapt quickly to the club's 'fast footy' style.

"We've got a very deep group, so to find myself ahead of a few boys, it makes me feel good and my confidence levels have gone up because of that," Dunkley said.

"When we started playing a few (NAB Challenge) games and match simulation at training, I started to get a bit of the ball and then to find myself in the team for round one, it was very special for my family and I."

Wednesday, 25 November 2015
The Western Bulldogs select Josh Dunkley with pick No.25 in the 2015 NAB AFL Draft.

Sydney chose to not to match the Bulldogs' bid for Dunkley under the father/son rule.

"To get Josh, who we felt with his leadership, ability to win the ball at ground level, a good mark, and his leadership, was crucial for us," Bulldogs recruitment manager Simon Dalrymple said.

"That was a good result that Sydney didn't match that bid."

Friday, 20 November 2015
Josh Dunkley is set to join the Sydney Swans after he nominated the club under the father-son rule.

“The club is pleased Josh has decided to nominate the Swans under the father-son rule,” Swans football manager Tom Harley said.

“Josh is a determined and competitive player and has existing relationships within the club.

“Like the vast majority of players in the draft, Josh’s desire is to stay close to family but he has elected to nominate the Swans and is open to a move north which is exciting."

Thursday, 29 October 2015
Josh Dunkley will have another three weeks to decide whether he nominates as a father-son to the Sydney Swans or enters the open draft after the AFL extended the deadline for nominations.

Dunkley's father, Andrew, played 217 games for the Swans from 1992-2002.

Sunday, 28 June 2015
Josh Dunkley will wait until later in the year before deciding whether he nominates as a father-son selection with the Sydney Swans, having just returned from a long-term back injury.

The midfielder is eligible to join the Swans, where his father Andrew played 217 games between 1992-2002 and was a key member of their defence for a decade.

But after a four-month layoff with a back stress fracture that saw him only play his first game of the NAB AFL under-18 Championships for Vic Country on Friday, Josh said he wanted to pick up some form before making his call.

"I haven't given it much thought because I haven't been playing much footy. I'll just wait and see, and it depends where I'm ranked and that kind of thing," he said.

"I'll talk to a lot of people about it. I'm still nowhere near making a decision. Obviously the Swans are a really good club and I've been up there a few times and they've really welcomed me in, but I'll just wait and see how I go."

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