SOUTH Australia and the Allies have dominated the Under-18 All Australian side announced today, with six nominees from each team. The Croweaters took out the title yesterday after defeating Vic Metro in the final match of the carnival and were rewarded with more than a quarter of the players in the team. In what shapes as a unique draft, seven players of the 23-man side are attached to a club either through their Academy or father-son rule.
Potential top 10 picks Jack Lukosius, Izak Rankine and Jackson Hately make the side, as does captain and South Australian Most Valuable Player (MVP) Luke Valente who has been named as the side’s vice-captain. Defenders Jez McLennan and Will Gould (bottom-age) have also made the side.
The Allies have produced six players for the team, including Gold Coast Academy and Geelong and North Melbourne father-son prospect Bailey Scott, top 20 hope Chayce Jones, Murray Bushrangers’ swingman Jacob Koschitzke, MVP award winner Kieren Briggs, Brisbane Lions’ Academy member Connor McFadyen, and bottom-ager Mitch O’Neill.
Vic Metro finished second overall and produced five members in the team, including defenders Isaac Quaynor and Buku Khamis, potential top five picks Ben King and MVP winner Bailey Smith, and Western Bulldogs’ father-son prospect Rhylee West. They easily eclipsed their Country counterparts with just two players named from Vic Country – Larke Medal winner Sam Walsh who captains the side, and Gippsland Power key defender Kyle Reid.
Western Australia had four nominees, with ball-winning midfielder Luke English, MVP award winning defender Jordan Clark, uncompromising inside midfielder Sydney Stack, and bottom-ager Jeremy Sharp.
Title-winning South Australian coach Tony Bamford was selected as the man to lead the side, with Tasmania’s Lance Spaulding named assistant coach. Kevin Sheehan (AFL Talent Ambassador), Luke Power (AFL Academy Head Coach), Marcus Ashcroft (AFL Talent Competition and Operations), Dom Milesi (Collingwood recruiting manager), Troy Selwood (Geelong recruiting manager), Matt Clarke (Richmond recruiting manager) and Chris Liberatore (St Kilda recruiting manager) selected the All-Australian team.