Hill tops in LPFL count
The 31-year-old, who won the 2004 Central Highlands league best and fairest with Clunes and has represented Victoria Country in the Australian championships, finished the count with 24 votes.
He was four clear of Rokewood-Corindhap's Karl Begbie and a further vote ahead of teammate Matt Stasse to claim the Peter Smith Memorial medal.
A "shocked" Hill said he only attended the vote count in support of his wife, who made a comeback to netball in C-grade competition this year.
"I'm honoured. I really am," he said.
"I gave myself a chance of maybe coming middle of the pack, maybe getting 10 votes for the season, but obviously the umpires had other ideas."
Hill, who joint-coaches the Saints with Jade Keam, held a lead for much of the count, and despite missing a number of matches late in the year, ended the home-and-away season with a three-vote match against Skipton.
The 2007 Carngham-Linton premiership player said he opted to remain sidelined in the final matches of the regular season in preparation for the finals due to an osteitis pubis problem. However, he was forced to make a premature return due to the late withdrawal of Robbie Greenbank in round 16.
"Basically I get up on a Sunday morning and it takes me five minutes to really get going and put my shoes on and stuff like that," he said.
"I trained four times for the whole season this year and I am not ready to play until basically Friday night.
"If I trained throughout the week then I wouldn't play, it's as simple as that."
This year's LPFL interleague captain, who was considering retirement at the end of the season, said he may have to pull on the boots again in 2010.
"I actually thought this season might pull it up, but I might have to go around again."
Ballarat Courier Photograph: Carngham-Linton's Jason Hill with his Lexton Plains best and fairest medal last night. Picture: Andrew Kelly