A PREMIERSHIP medal was the perfect parting gift from The Rock-Yerong Creek for Liam Lupton.
The Nitschke-Schmidt Medal for best-on-ground was the icing on the cake.
Lupton's second season at the Magpies got the perfect finish as he starred in a seven-point grand final win over Northern Jets.
Lupton was judged best-on-ground in an even team performance from the Magpies, narrowly over Northern Jets' star Mitch Haddrill.
The 24-year-old was part of a TRYC half-back line that was rock solid throughout the contest.
"It's surreal," Lupton said.
"I did not expect that at all.
"I actually thought it was a whole team effort the whole day, so to be recognised like that is icing on top of the cake."
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Lupton enjoyed a strong finals series last year and is renowned as a big game player at the club.
He admits he enjoys the big stage.
"It sounds bad but I usually try a bit harder in finals," he said.
"Because I work all year and that pre-season and you start to think of those hard running sessions and I put myself into fifth gear."
Lupton arrived at TRYC last year from AFL Canberra club Eastlake, but had also enjoyed a season at Canberra Demons in the NEAFL.
He made a strong impression in his first year and them missed half of this season due to an overseas holiday.
While Saturday's premiership success made him think twice about his future plans, Lupton said it was the perfect way to finish.
"I think it's the best way," he said.
"Honestly I was up there and thinking ohhh maybe I could go one more year but it was a nice way to finish my football down here.
"I could not recommend it to anyone else any higher to come down and play football here. It's been the best change up to my football career and I'm glad I've done it.
"I think Rusty (Heath Russell) asked me at the wrong time because I was still in holiday mood. But in all honesty, I'm still pretty young, I still want to travel the world and explore that.
"I've been playing footy since I could talk and it's not the be all, end all so I'll have a bit of a break."
It was Lupton's first senior premiership success.
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