Sunday, perhaps could have been the launching pad after playing his first VFL senior match for the Northern Blues against North Ballarat at Eureka Stadium in the VFL after a spate of injuries.
“This year I decided to play VFL and give it one last crack,” Peterson said.
Michael Cook, president of Old Carey, where Peterson played last year in the VAFA, has been an aspiring influence for Peterson. The two met while Peterson was on the a pre-season training camp at the Hawks on the Kokoda Trek where Cook was part of a corporate group at the Hawks, doing the same trek.
Cook, who Peterson suggests is like a player manager to him, spruiked the 24-year-old’s talent to every AFL club last season, where they believe Richmond and Essendon harbour some interest but told him to play VFL this season.
Peterson believes the racist comments from former Adelaide recruiting manager Matt Rendell earlier this year, in which he indicated that he would only recruit aboriginal players with one white parent – that ultimately ended in his sacking from the Crows – did not deter him from attempting to get back into the system.
“It didn’t faze me at all to keep trying. I mean it doesn’t matter what colour you are or what nationality you are or what culture you follow, we’re all humans, we’ve all got red blood and we all do the same stuff,” Peterson said.
“I didn’t think too much of it but it didn’t affect me at all in trying to get back.”
Peterson believes, that despite the hits and misses over the past few years, he is now ready to give it his all on and off the field having adjusted to the Melbourne city life, so much so that he has rarely returned to his native homeland since.
“I’ve definitely matured as a player having been at those two clubs. I’ve been here for five years now. The first three was off and on, going back home and that and getting a lot of home sickness but I’ve made my family here and made this home,” he said.
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