Fyfe “Surprised” By MVP Award
Words: Michael Flynn
Image: Ray Gardner/Redlands United FC
Graham Fyfe says he is “surprised” at his recognition as the PlayStation® 4 NPL Queensland 2015 Senior Men’s Most Valuable Player.
The 32-year-old Redlands United player-coach won a close contest to edge out Palm Beach SC’s Justyn McKay and Moreton Bay United’s Royce Brownlie for the honour.
Fyfe becomes the third player in three seasons to win the Most Valuable Player award - joining previous winners Tim Smits and Chris Lucas on the competition’s honour role.
The Most Valuable Player award is determined by PlayStation 4 NPL Queensland referees, who allocate a 3-2-1 points system at the conclusion of each senior men’s fixture throughout the regular season.
The long-time Redlands stalwart conceded he hadn’t expected to receive the honour despite being a consistent performer in his team’s best season to date.
“It’s a wee bit of a surprise because there’s a lot of really good players in the competition” Fyfe said.
“I always given everything I can every season I’ve ever played football. So it’s nice to get an individual award and I’m really chuffed with it, especially given my age.”
Despite Redlands being yet to announce any signing for 2016, Fyfe said he was confident he would return for the Red Devils next season and added his pre-season preparations had already commenced
“You always want to prove people wrong as you get older but I also know that football is a fickle game and I don't take anything for granted,” he explained.
“If you’re not playing well you well get dropped and there are a lot of great young boys coming through in NPL so you’ve got to stay on your game and put in that extra work.”
Fyfe was also recognised as the competition’s Golden Boot winner with a haul of 18 goals in his 22 regular season appearances.
“I’ve never really played as a ‘number 9’ and there a lot of good strikers in the league like Antonio Murray, Tim Smits and Royce Brownlie - to get close to them and then to pip them at the end is a pretty cool personal achievement,” Fyfe explained.
“There were a few penalties in there as well and so I have to thank a lot of boys at Redlands, who play attacking football and gave me those opportunities.”
As a midfielder, several of Fyfe’s strikes were also delivered from distance and he explained his renowned accuracy is a result of constant practice over more than a decade, including his time with Scottish giants Celtic as a junior and youth player.
“When I was a kid coming through that was all we used to do and I had some great coaches that believed in individual techniques and I still do that with my own coaching.”
“I worked my socks off for years and years and years with long-range striking and I still practice it,” he concluded.