By Tyler Lewis
“Dad always used to say to me: work rate and voice.”
It’s a simple mantra, but it’s one that’s holding Miller Bergman in good stead.
The beaming runner is striding into discussions by those who matter through his elite decision making with Sherrin in hand and his perpetual coverage of the ground.
The Dandenong Stingray was born and raised on his local footy ground in Berwick; it’s where he learned the fundamentals that currently drive him to succeed.
“Dad was a big footy head, I always followed what he did,” he said.
“We always had a run around on the oval where I’ve always grown up in Berwick.
“(I) played all my junior footy at Berwick where we were quite successful, that’s where I developed my passion for footy and (passion) to win.
“We won five premierships out of the six, I was lucky enough to be a part of that team.
“It wasn’t just one or two standouts, everyone just contributed equally,” Bergman said.
While catching onlookers attention in the early stages of the season, Bergman believes the recent recess break in the NAB League has helped him develop two sides of his game.
“When they had the recess break from NAB League, I was fortunate enough to go and train with a VFL squad,” he said.
“I developed a few more skills, being able to train with Casey, I was able to stay up to speed.
“Then with local, with bigger bodies, it got more physical, playing for Berwick – in those two games I was able to play – it showed how physical it can get.
“The physicality side prepared me a bit (too) I think,” Bergman said.
In the Rays second game of the year, Bergman didn’t stop running, covering an elite distance for the NAB League.
“Yeah 13.5km during the game,” he said.
“During games I just try and run as much as possible and be loud, then try and use it when I’ve got it.
“During the Covid lockdown (in 2020) I was running maybe three to four times a week.
“5km, 10km, then sometimes a short 1km run to just tick the legs over every now and then.
“Now that training is back, I run once or twice a week.
“I am preparing for the harder stages if I am able and lucky enough to get there.
“I have gone and watched North Melbourne train, I am a mad North Melbourne supporter, I have seen how hard they work at training, I have tried to get that into my own scenario.
“Keep fit and work hard, it is never going to get easier the higher you go,” Bergman said.
Now, while is running is a major asset to his game, Bergman is working on physically preparing himself for a higher level of football.
A preparation that comes with a deep commitment.
“One of my main factors now is to put on size,” he said.
“I went to the Stingrays and got a nutritionist and I have got a PT (personal trainer).
“That is my big aim, to put on size.
“Preparing to put on size for bigger bodies if I am lucky enough to get there.”