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Running express from Noble Park to Collingwood

Watch young gun Kyle Martin address those gathered at the E.W. Copeland Trophy Dinner after winning the Joseph Wren Memorial Trophy as the club's best-and-fairest at VFL level. Watch young gun Kyle Martin address those gathered at the E.W. Copeland Trophy Dinner after winning the Joseph Wren Memorial Trophy as the club's best-and-fairest at VFL level.
Kyle Martin celebrates one of his four goals against North Ballarat in round 17. Photo: Shane Barrie.

Mature age rookie Kyle Martin capped off a remarkable first season on an AFL list by winning the Joseph Wren Memorial Trophy as Collingwood’s best performed VFL player.

Martin polled 83 votes in 13 games to win the VFL best and fairest by 19 votes from fellow rookie Adam Oxley.

The 23-year-old enjoyed an outstanding season in the midfield, averaging 24.7 disposals per game and 7.8 clearances.

He also managed to kick 35 goals (at an average of 2.7 per game) to finish behind only Jackson Paine (45) as the team’s leading goalkicker.

"Firstly, I'd just like to thank the Collingwood Football Club for giving me the opportunity to be a part of an organisation like this and one of the greatest sporting clubs in the world," said Martin after accepting his award at Friday night's Copeland Trophy.

He broke into the senior team after kicking six goals and collecting 29 possessions in the narrow win over Essendon in round seven.

He remained in the senior side for four weeks, kicking six goals and averaging 16.25 disposals while playing predominantly as a half forward.

It appears that the Noble Park product is in the coaching staff’s plans for 2014 as he was named as an emergency for Collingwood’s final home and away game against North Melbourne.

Martin was on recruiters' radars as far back as 2008 when he was playing for the Sandringham Dragons in the TAC Cup. He went on to play senior football for Noble Park in the Eastern Football League before spending 2012 with Frankston in the VFL.

His best-and-fairest winning season with the Dolphins was enough to convince the Collingwood recruiting team that he was their man when it was time to use their first selection (No. 13 overall) in last December's Rookie Draft.

2014 Joseph Wren Memorial Trophy
VFL Best and Fairest

1. Kyle Martin (83 votes)
2. Adam Oxley (64 votes)
3. Andrew Krakouer (59 votes)
4. Peter Yagmoor (54 votes)
5. Jack Hellier (51 votes)
6. Alan Didak, Jackson Paine (46 votes)
8. Jarrod Witts, Tim Allan (43 votes)
10. Ben Hudson (42 votes)