Tag: GWS Academy

NSW/ACT weekly wrap: Unity Grammar claims Bachar Houli Cup

UNITY Grammar has taken out the prestigious Bachar Houli Cup, while Canberra Demons were the sole winners across the North Eastern Australian Football League (NEAFL) from the state, and both Sydney Swans and the GIANTS Academies went down in the fourth round of the Under 18 Academy Series.

Unity Grammar take out Bachar Houli Cup

Western Sydney-based school Unity Grammar has taken out the 2018 Bachar Houli Cup held earlier this week. The Bachar Houli Cup is a program that encourages Year 9 and 10 students of Muslim backgrounds to participate in an AFL 9s competition with players of varying experiences taking part in the full day competition.

The GWS GIANTS and AFL NSW/ACT held the competition at Progress Park in Auburn which saw a turnout of 13 teams from 12 schools that participate. The Grand Final saw Unity Grammar hold out Granville Boys High School to win by four points.

The best players from the tournament will be given the opportunity to be part of the Bachar Houli Academy which is a week-long football talent program for aspiring AFL players with Muslim backgrounds, to be held in September in Melbourne. For more information on the programs, contact nickie.flambouras@afl.com.au or head to the AFL NSW/ACT website or Facebook page.

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Shipley’s GIANT commitment

Just two games into his AFL career, local Campbelltown boy, Nick Shipley has put pen to paper and re-signed with the GWS GIANTS for a further two years. The commitment means Shipley will remain in his home region until at least 2021. The Western Sydney born player made headlines when he debuted in round six, as the first player from the area to play for the GIANTS. Originally a soccer convert, Shipley has been a member of the GIANTS Academy since he was 13 years-old.

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Swans, GIANTS go down in Under 18 Academy Series

Tarryn Thomas-inspired Tasmanian side has toppled the Sydney Swans Academy to officially claim the Under 18 Academy Series title. With one round remaining Tasmania sits on top of the table undefeated, and with a head-to-head differential the tiebreaker between teams, the victory over the Swans means the boys from the Apple Isle cannot be dismounted from the title. 

For Sydney, Nick Blakey booted three goals, but was relatively held compared to his dominant combined 12 goals in his opening two games in the series, with half-forward Josh Stern named in the best alongside Luke Parkes and Sam Thorne.

Tasmania        6.2       9.3       14.3     18.5 (113)
Sydney            1.2       5.5       8.7       12.9 (81) 

GOALS
Tasmania: Mundy 3, Dakin 2, Rubock 2, McGuinness 2, Thomas 2, Jones, Mansell, Jackson, Turner, Donnelly, Burrows-Cheng, O’Neill
Sydney: Blakey 3, Barling 2, Stewart 2, Parker 2, Stern, Thorne, Loone 

BEST
Tasmania: Thomas, Dakin, Jackson, Baker, Mundy, Jones
Sydney: Stern, Parks, Thorne, Rayner, Blakey, Brewer

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Brisbane Lions Academy had a huge win over GWS GIANTS Academy, placing them third overall on the table for the Series thus far. The Lions held the GIANTS goalless in the opening three terms and capped off the performance with a five goals to one final quarter to win by a huge 88 points.

For GWS, it was a tough day at the office but bottom-age midfielder Thomas Green was the clear standout, notching up a team-high 28 disposals in the defeat, while Kieran Briggs, bottom-ager Matthew McGrory and over-ager Riley Budd were also solid on the day.

Brisbane Academy     4.2       6.8       9.11     14.16 (100)
GWS Academy            0.2       0.3       0.4       1.6 (12) 

GOALS
Brisbane Academy: Ansell 3, McFadyen 2, Tomkinson 2, Tozer 2, Currie, Franks, Kennedy, Marsh, Townson
GWS Academy: McGrory 

BEST
Brisbane Academy: Coleman, Marango, McFadyen, Matthews, Franks, Marsh
GWS Academy: Green, Briggs, McGrory, Budd

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NEAFL Round 5 results:

GIANTS 7.5 (47) defeated by Southport 19.19 (133)

The GIANTS had a match to forget against Southport, going down by 86 points at Fankhauser Reserve. The home side booted six goals from 11 scoring shots in the first term to just one behind, and despite a closer second quarter, ran away with the contested courtesy of a nine goals to four second half.

Sam Taylor amassed 32 disposals and 15 marks in defence – showing how much he was needed in the back half – while Harry Perryman collected 26 disposals, six marks, laid three tackles and booted a goal. Isaac Cumming was good with 27 disposals and nine marks, while Dawson Simpson did his chances of a recall no harm with 34 hitouts and six tackles.

Canberra 11.14 (80) defeated Gold Coast 7.9 (51)

A six-goal final term saw Canberra Demons storm home to steal the points from Gold Coast in a 29-point victory. The Demons trailed by five points at the final break – and had done so all game – but a 6.5 to 1.1 last quarter resulted in Canberra running away with a comfortable victory.

Mitchell Hardie notched up 29 disposals, eight marks and booted 2.3 to be Canberra’s best with Alex Smout who had the ball on a string with 36 disposals, nine marks and four inside 50s. Others who impressed with Isaac Taylor (32 disposals, seven marks, five tackles) and Tom Highmore (23 disposals, 10 marks, three tackles and two goals), while Alex Paech played an important defensive role with 14 disposals, five marks and three tackles.

Sydney 9.17 (71) defeated by Aspley 11.6 (72)

Sydney Swans have fallen short of a perfect comeback with inaccuracy ultimately to blame for a one-point loss to Aspley. The Swans trailed all game, and faced a nine-point deficit at the final change before charging home in the last quarter. But alas for the home side, they booted a frustrating 2.8 to Aspley’s 2.0 to fall a point short of claiming the four points.

Daniel Robinson had a day out with 34 disposals, 11 marks, seven tackles and two goals in a best on ground performance, while Darcy Cameron continued his great form in the ruck with 37 hitouts to go with 21 disposals, 10 marks and a goal. Nic Newman was great with 33 disposals, six marks and seven tackles, while Ryley Stoddart (22 disposals, seven marks, six tackles) and Aliir Aliir (21 disposals, three tackles, 11 hitouts) were others who impressed for Sydney.

Sydney University had the bye.

NSW/ACT weekly wrap: Swans Academy rolls on, three debut in AFL

SYDNEY Swans Academy remains unbeaten in the Under 18 Academy Series, three debutants shine on the AFL stage, while Sydney University’s unbeaten streak continued for another week in the North East Australian Football League (NEAFL).

Under 18 Academy Series: Round 3

NORTHERN TERRITORY       1.4       1.7       5.10     8.13 (61)
SYDNEY SWANS                    6.1       8.4       11.5     14.6 (90)

GOALS
NORTHERN TERRITORY: 
M.Cumming 3, S.Cumming, Wyatt, Forbes, Mummery, Ferreira
SYDNEY SWANS: Barkley 3, Swaney 2, Reinhard 2, Thorne, Stein, Maguire, Wicks, Van Huisstede, Carroll, Barling 

BEST
NORTHERN TERRITORY: 
Mummery, M.Cumming, Simon, Green, S.Cumming, Hutt
SYDNEY SWANS: Reinhard, Parkes, Stern, Kilpatrick, Wicks, Brewer

A FAST start from the Sydney Swans Academy ensured they would run out 29-point winners over the Northern Territory team in Alice Springs on Saturday. The Swans kept NT to just a sole goal going into half time, with eight to their name and never looked back in claiming their third win of the tournament. 

Despite missing likely top 10 draft pick Nick BlakeyRory Barkley continued his good form of the carnival, bagging three goals, while Lachlan Swaney and Joey Reinhard both kicked two each. The 190cm Reinhard was named the Swans best for the match, with overager Sam Wicks and midfielder Cooper Kilpatrick also in the best. Reinhard played at centre half-forward, using his size to his advantage – taking multiple strong marks around the ground. He also pinched hit in the ruck at times and pulled off a stunning specky in the third quarter, as a contender for the best mark of the series. 

GOLD COAST SUNS    3.3     7.4       8.4       11.8 (74)
GWS GIANTS               0.5     2.8       5.10     7.12 (54)  

GOALS
GOLD COAST SUNS:  Bowie 3, Buckland 2, Graham 2, Greenwool 2, Scott, Gore
GWS GIANTS: Perryman 2, Delahunty 2, Lucas, Driscoll, Corbett 

BEST
GOLD COAST SUNS: 
Gilmore, Bowie, Scott, Koenen, Budarick, Greenwool
GWS GIANTS: Briggs, Peatling, Richardson, Lucas

The GIANTS went goalless in the opening term, but Ed Perryman (brother of GWS’ Harry) booted two goals, as did highly touted AFL Academy Level One member Liam Delahunty – who dominated in the Under 16 championships last year. After performing well at centre half-forward last week, Kieren Briggs played a bigger role in the ruck, recording 28 hitouts – while his pressure around the ground was important, where he laid nine tackles. Xavier College student Jeremy Lucas had a match-high 29 disposals in the midfield, performing exceptionally well in the contest for the Giants. 

 

Three debut at elite level

It was a huge week for NSW/ACT debutants in the AFL, with Melbourne’s Charlie Spargo, GIANTS’ Nick Shipley and Essendon’s Kobe Mutch all playing their first games at the elite level on the weekend. Former Murray Bushrangers small forward Spargo, was injured in his top-age year and slipped down the draft order. He defied his draft selection to boot two goals from 18 disposals (nine contested), four marks, two inside 50s and three tackles in a top performance for the Demons in their win over Essendon.

Former Bendigo Pioneer Mutch might not have sung the song, but he was equally as impressive in the red and black, notching up 20 disposals, six marks, two inside 50s and laying a tackle. Mutch also had three clearances to go with his 10 contested possessions. The most talked about debut of the trio was Shipley – a soccer convert from Western Sydney. Shipley embodies what the GIANTS hope to achieve in the region, getting more players involved in Australian Rules Football at the grassroots level. Shipley was the first player from Western Sydney to debut for the GIANTS, and picked up seven disposals, two marks, three tackles and had an inside 50 and a goal assist to go with one behind.

 

NEAFL Round 4:

Canberra Demons 10.13 (73) defeated by Aspley 12.16 (88)

Canberra Demons suffered their third loss in four games, losing to Queensland side Aspley by 15 points on the weekend. The home team was in it for the first half, but a disappointing five goals to one third term saw the visitors blow out to a 24-point final break lead. Canberra hit back in the fourth quarter, booting four goals to two, but it was too little, too late as they went down despite the best efforts of Mitch Maguire. Maguire had 30 disposals, four marks, six tackles and booted a goal to be Canberra’s best again, while Isaac Taylor had 19 disposals, five marks and eight tackles and Kade Klemke finished with 17 disposals, five marks and six tackles in the defeat. Others among the bests were Cameron Milne who had 15 disposals, four marks, one tackle, 24 hitouts and booted a goal, while Lucas Meline had 17 disposals, five marks and two tackles, but misfired in front of goal with three behinds.

Sydney University 13.10 (88) defeated Southport 6.19 (55)

Sydney University has remained undefeated in the NEAFL after a 33-point victory over an inaccurate Southport. The home side were on top early, and aside from being held goalless in the second term, booted nine goals to three in the second half to run away with the match. Former Sydney and Essendon midfielder Craig Bird notched up 28 disposals, eight marks and four tackles, while Mitchell Thompson collected 27 disposals, nine marks and two tackles. Timothy Barton was named the winners’ best for his role, picking up 13 disposals and four marks, while Adam Gulden was also impressive with 18 disposals (15 kicks) and four marks.

Sydney Swans Reserves 6.13 (49) defeated Gold Coast Suns Reserves 8.10 (58)

Sydney went down to Gold Coast in their NEAFL clash, conceding two goals to zero in the third term to lose by nine points. Darcy Cameron has a huge game with 24 disposals, 11 marks, nine tackles, 32 hitouts and two goals, while Jake Brown had 23 disposals, six marks and booted a goal. Tom McCartin‘s form up forward continued, taking eight marks and booting 1.3 from 15 disposals, while Aliir Aliir pushed his case for a return assisting in the ruck with eight hitouts, going with his 17 disposals. three marks and two tackles.

UWS Giants 6.4 (40) defeated by Brisbane Lions Reserves 19.19 (133)

The UWS Giants were no match for Brisbane Lions, with the reigning premiers touching up the home side in a 93-point belting. It was not looking good early with Brisbane leading by 30 points at half-time, but it got ugly in the second half as Brisbane piled on 10.10 to 1.1 in a complete rout to run out comfortable winners. Dylan Addison stood tall with 25 disposals, two marks and a goal, while first round draft pick Aiden Bonar collected 23 disposals, two marks, six tackles and booted a goal upon return from injury. Dawson Simpson had 36 hitouts from seven disposals, while Isaac Cumming was good with 15 disposals and five tackles.

Scouting notes: Under 18 Academy Series – Round 2

ROUND TWO of the Under 18 Academy Series saw some of the best talent in the 2018 draft pool standout. Sydney Swans, Brisbane Lions and Tasmania were the winners with our scouts watching two of the games over the weekend. 

BLAKEY & THOMAS STAR IN WEEK TWO OF U18 ACADEMY SERIES

Sydney Swans Academy vs. GWS Academy 

Sydney Swans: 

#3 Nick Blakey – A simply outstanding performance. Blakey was heavily marked during the game, but managed to rack up 20 possessions all around the ground. With nine shots on goal, he finished with a tidy bag of seven goals which consisted of set shots, on the run and a couple of snaps within the goal square. Blakey’s forward pressure was also a strong feature of his game.

#16 Josh Stern – Top-age Stern showed really good run and carry off the half-back flank and through the midfield. He won a lot of football, despite being outnumbered at multiple contests 2:1. He has some really good speed and agility, and showed this when he received a tight handball right on the boundary line, taking off and kicking a beautiful goal from the boundary line. 

#20 Samuel Thorn – Thorn, one of the bottom-age players, had a solid game through the midfield, his huge work rate a feature. Thorn applied pressure to the GWS midfield throughout the game with his chase and tackle getting under the skin of a couple of GWS players.

#38 Michael Carroll – Carroll, another top age player, was solid all day at full-back marking Riley Corbett who was a handful early on the game. Carroll was particularly strong in the second and third quarters when GWS had a run on, he worked hard repelling the GWS attack, spoiling many GWS forward entries and he rebounded the ball well by foot.

GWS Giants:

#2 Edward Perryman – The brother of GWS’ Harry, played a small forward role for the GIANTS academy. Perryman proved to be a hard match up for the Swans, with his speed, agility and small stature helping him inside 50, where he booted three goals for the match. 

#23 Matthew Walker – The AFL Academy member only played the first half after a bump on Blakey resulted in an arm injury which was on ice for the second half of the match. Walker had a nice shot on goal before the incident, but it was pushed wide.

#31 Riley Corbett – Corbett started the game at full forward and was involved immediately, leading into space and taking a few great marks. Corbett also booted the first goal of the game for GWS. He showed good mobility around the ground and when he switched into the ruck, the GIANTS begun to gain momentum in the middle of the ground and get on top. 

#34 Kieren Briggs – Playing centre-half forward, Briggs took some strong pack marks and kicked a great goal in the second quarter. He used his physical pressure around the stoppages and was rewarded with a couple of free kicks. Briggs finished the game with two handy goals.

Tasmania vs. Northern Territory (Ed Pascoe) 

Tasmania

#6 Chayce Jones – It was a typical display from Jones who played well in the midfield, tackling hard and hitting the contests hard. Jones’ attack on the ball led to many scoring opportunities for Tasmania, in the first quarter he attacked the ball hard, spun around and hit a lace out pass to a leading forward and this was what he did for most of the game. Jones was rewarded plenty of times with some hard tackles all over the ground. Jones has a surprisingly good leap which he showed with some good spoils and when he went for a spoil it stayed that way putting everything into it. An overall solid and typical game from Jones.

#9 Mitchell Anderton – There is not much of Anderton but you couldn’t question his competitiveness and ability to win one-on-ones. His defensive work was fantastic often making good spoils and competing hard once the ball hit the deck. Some of his attacks on the ball where just incredible and he was a major reason Tasmania were able to repel NT’s forward entries so well. Because of his size he may get overlooked for the Allies, but I do hope that he gets a run in the National Under 18 Championships so he can impress on the bigger stage. In terms of defending and skill it was one of the better performances from a small defender that I’ve seen this year.

#12 Fraser Turner – Turner was a workhorse in the midfield winning plenty of the ball on the inside while also working hard on the outside to keep involved. Turner was one of the most composed players in the heat of the game early on, often keeping his cool and working out of congestion to find a good option. His kicking at times wasn’t as clean as it should have been and I’ll be keen to see if he can improve this in coming weeks and for the Allies if selected. Turner did kick a nice set shot goal late in the game and kicking more goals could really give him a point of difference for the Mariners midfield. 

#13 Tarryn Thomas – Thomas was the clear standout player on the ground finishing with three goals, with two coming late in the game – with the game on the line. Thomas started the game in the midfield showing clean hands at the stoppages, he had some good roves at clearances and once he was on the move he got through traffic with ease. Thomas did plenty on the outside taking some nice marks and using his long kick to advantage. Thomas was moved to full forward in the last quarter, with one of the goals he kicked a classy banana goal on the boundary which showed why he is rated as one of this years best draft prospects. On the lead he was quick and just attacked the contest in the air, taking some brilliant marks from pure speed and desire for the ball, at times he would often come from behind defenders and work his way to the front to mark with pure desire.

Northern Territory: 

#22 Matthew Green – AFL Academy member Matthew Green showed a lot of his trademark speed and agility throughout the day, Green got plenty of the ball all over the ground and his voice around the ground was also very good always trying to assist his teammates. Green was very clean at the stoppages often picking up the ground ball with ease and giving off a slick handball, Green also worked hard defensively where he laid a great chase down tackle in the last quarter and could hold his head up high after the loss.

#23 Michael Mummery – Mummery spent a lot of his time in the midfield, he had a few good roves from clearances and stoppages. He also got to show some of his great movement in traffic especially late in the game. Mummery didn’t see much of the ball when forward, but he did take a nice mark from the side of the pack and kicked a nice long set shot goal and it would have to be one of the better set shot techniques from a player eligible for the draft this year. It was nice to see Mummery get some time in the midfield, but I feel he will excel for the Allies in a couple of months playing in his natural position up forward.

#36 Stephen Cumming – Stephen Cumming was the dominant big man of the game competing well in the ruck and pushing hard around the ground to be an option. Cumming showed surprisingly good skills for a big 200cm player, he was clean and sharp by hand & he took some great marks, finding teammates by foot. He won plenty of the ball around the ground and at stoppages right after a tap, his follow up work is to be commended and could hold his head high after the loss.

#37 Matthew Cumming – The twin brother of Stephen, Matthew spent all his time down back where he took plenty of intercept marks and used the ball really well down back. Cumming did everything you could ask from a big key defender, he took intercept marks, put on good spoils and he was clean with his hands and ball use. He worked in tandem with his brother in one passage of play in the second quarter which really caught the eye with both executing some slick handballs.

NSW/ACT weekly wrap: Youth Girls Northern Academy Series a success

A NUMBER of talented junior footballers have put their hand up for the NSW/ACT squad to take on Tasmania in June after some impressive showings in the recent Youth Girls Northern Academy Series.

Players were divided into two sides in the series, representing the GIANTS and Sydney Swans. While Brisbane Lions won the overall series, the GIANTS pushed them all the way in the opening game, falling one-point short of victory. The GIANTS did pick up a win – against the Swans – with a five-goal victory in a high-scoring contest. The Swans did not win a game but were competitive in each outing and showed promising signs of improvement throughout the tournament.

AFL NSW/ACT Youth Girls Assistant Coach Nicola Barr told the AFL NSW/ACT website that the series was a great experience for the aspiring AFLW players.

“The Northern Academy Series over the weekend in Coffs Harbour was a huge success,” said Barr. “It was great to see how much the girls seemed to develop in such a short space of time. “The girls were really competitive and acted in an elite manner throughout the weekend, which sets them up well in terms of a pathway towards AFL Women’s.”

Barr said while all the girls played well, it was Georgia Breward and Tash McKay who caught her eye across the weekend.

“Breward is a small player whose skills, courage in the game and decision making skills were a real stand out. I also loved McKay’s ability to know when to leave her opponent in the back line to take an intercept mark – she is also really strong in her attack on the footy.”

Magical Murray a Rising Star

He was a huge topic of conversation during last year’s AFL Trade Period, but Collingwood running defender Sam Murray is beginning to silence the critics. At the time, many pundits questioned why Collingwood had traded a future second round pick for an unproven player who was yet to crack it for a game in Sydney.

The 20 year-old has already shown Collingwood fans – and indeed the rest of the competition – why the Pies had faith in him. Murray has added line-breaking speed and composure to a Collingwood back six that has been crying out for exactly that for some time. He replaces the retired Ben Sinclair and delisted Jackson Ramsay who had played Murray’s role in past years. The former Henty product always had talent but had to do it the hard way to make it into the AFL system.

After being unsuccessfully tried as a forward, Murray won Team of the Year honours at North Eastern Australian Football League (NEAFL) level last season, and caught the eye of Collingwood recruiter Derek Hine. The Pies took the punt on Murray with a second round pick and exchange of later picks, which could prove to be a bargain at the end of the season. If his Round 3 Rising Star nomination is anything to go by, Murray could prove a great steal for the Magpies.

Swans win ‘Battle of the Bridge’ over GIANTS

Sydney Swans have bounced back from their loss against Port Adelaide in Round 2 to knock off cross-town rivals the GIANTS. In what was an entertaining game, Sydney defeated the GIANTS 16.7 (103) to 12.15 (87), thanks to an inspired performance by Lance Franklin. ‘Buddy’ kicked a miraculous goal – one of two for the night – but racked up 22 disposals and 10 marks, playing further up the ground and impacting the contest. Callum Sinclair had 45 hitouts, but was beaten by Jon Patton who played the best game of his career with 19 hitouts, but seven clearances, 10 tackles, six inside 50s and a goal from 19 disposals.

Others who impressed were Callum Mills (26 disposals, eight rebounds), Josh Kennedy (25 disposals, eight clearances) and Isaac Heeney (23 disposals, six marks). For the GIANTS, Stephen Coniglio continued his good form with 27 disposals, five clearances and four inside 50s, while Callan Ward (24 disposals, seven inside 50s) and Nick Haynes (28 disposals, eight marks) were among the other players to impress for the losers.

Queensland claims Under 16s Championships Division Two with undefeated carnival

QUEENSLAND has claimed the NAB AFL Under 16 Championships Division Two title, going through undefeated on their home turf.

Bar a close opening round clash against NSW-ACT, Queensland, led by coach Adrian Fletcher, was largely unchallenged throughout the carnival.

WESTERN AUSTRALIA CLAIM UNDER 16s CHAMPIONSHIPS DIVISION ONE TITLE

Kobe Tozer was one of a number of standouts from Queensland. The Brisbane Lions Academy member stands at 194cm, averaging 16 disposals, six marks and three goals per game at the Under 16 Championships. Tozer is very agile, marks well overhead and has some tricks inside 50. He presented well on the lead and was close to winning Queensland’s MVP for the carnival. Tom Wischnat was another star for Queensland with the 188cm forward using his big frame to help him outmuscle his opponents. Wischnat is strong overhead and booted eight goals for the carnival.

Mitch Fitzpatrick was Queensland’s MVP, playing most of the carnival across half-back. Fitzpatrick reads the play well and was able to rebound the ball efficiently out of the defensive half of the ground. A surprise packet was Hewago “Ace” Paul Oea, a Papua New Guinean prospect who kicked nine goals in the last two games. The forward showed off his speed and is a name to keep an eye on.

For NSW/ACT, Liam Delahunty was the clear standout. The 191cm forward won the Alan McLean Medal as the best player in Division Two. Delahunty booted nine goals for the carnival, including a bag of five against Northern Territory. He is a smart player who can mark the ball well in the air. Delahunty could develop into one of the better key forwards in the 2019 draft pool, and is tied to the GWS Giants Academy. Jackson Barling – the son of Tim Barling (who played 27 AFL games for Richmond and Sydney) possesses clean hands and has both midfield and forward craft. Barling has a nice set shot and moves well as a medium sized forward at 181cm. Sam Thorne won NSW/ACT’s MVP as one of their more consistent players right throughout the carnival. Thorne booted seven goals for the Championships and had one of his best games against Northern Territory at Metricon Stadium in round two. The small forward currently stands at 172cm and is linked with the Sydney Swans Academy.

Standing out in the number one guernsey was Tasmania’s MVP Jared Dakin. The 178cm midfielder/small forward showed some promise and has a good footy IQ. Dakin knows where the goals are, booting three goals for the carnival and was one of their best in Tasmania’s big win over Northern Territory. Midfielders Bailey Gordon and Will Peppin impressed in round one, using their smarts around the ground to get to the right positions. Tasmania won just the single game for the carnival and from the outlook it appears to be another bleak draft representation from Tasmania at this early stage.

For Northern Territory, all eyes were on Maurice Rioli jnr – with the 14 year-old Richmond father-son prospect providing good glimpses despite playing far outside his own age group. He found 15 disposals against Tasmania, using it well on his right foot, willing to win the ball in the contest. Rioli is already 176cm and 74kg, so will be interesting to see how he develops over the next few years. Possesses good vision and the signs bode well for the future. Their MVP Dominic Forbes played as a rebounding defender and is a skillful right footer. Forbes uses it effectively by hand and the 186cm player will be one of their possible draftees in 2019. Barrindi Ngurrwuthun playted as a ruckman, and, standing at just 190cm, showed off some very impressive athletic traits and is a player to track.

South Warrnambool teenager Jamarra Ugle-Hagan was the Boomerangs standout, showing off a decent leap and good agility – two traits that have boded him well having played basketball. Manfred Kelly won the World XVIII MVP.

MVP:

NSW/ACT: Sam Thorne
Queensland: Mitch Fitzpatrick
Tasmania: Jared Dakin
Northern Territory: Dominic Forbes
Boomerangs: Jamarra Ugle-Hagan
World XVIII: Manfred Kelly

2017 Alan McLean Medal: Liam Delahunty (NSW/ACT)

2017 NAB AFL Under 16 Championships Division TWO results:

ROUND 1

Queensland 13.13 (91) d NSW/ACT 13.8 (86) 

Goals
Queensland: Wischnat 4, Jefferey 2, Tozer 2, Gore 2, Scroulk, Budarick, Conroy
NSW/ACT: Delahunty 4, Barling 4, Thorne 2, Ellem, Wilks, Russell 

Best
Queensland: Wischnat, Griffiths, Liessi, Fitzpatrick, Budarick, Martyn
NSW/ACT: Barleing, McGrath, Gaden, Thorne, Delahunty, Edwards, Green 

Tasmania 19.13 (127) d Northern Territory 6.4 (40) 

Goals
Tasmania: Rand 4, Peppin 3, Green 2, Dakin 2, Turner 2, Gordan 2, Paprotny, Cooke, Ireland, Chaplin
Northern Territory: Gindikindi 2, Jeffrey, Ngurrwuthun, Rusca, Palmer 

Best
Tasmania: Gordan, Peppin, Reeves, Ireland, Burrow-Cheng, Dakin, Rand
Northern Territory: Brown, Braun, Rioli, Ngurrwuthun, Lampton, Rusca

ROUND 2

NSW/ACT 20.16 (136) d Northern Territory 1.10 (16)

Goals
NSW/ACT: Delahunty 5, Thorne 4, Barling 4, Ellem 2, McGuire 2, Swaney, Russell, Allen
Northern Territory: Gindikindi

Best
NSW/ACT: Grant, Delahunty, Thorne, Martin, Barling, Rannan
Northern Territory: Forbes, Jungfer, Rosas, Cole, Rioli

Queensland 14.10 (94) d Tasmania 8.4 (52)

Goals
Queensland: Hewago 5, Jeffery 2, Tozer 2, Reville, Wischnat, Joyce, Clayton, Maloney
Tasmania: Routledge 2, Burrows-Cheng, Dakin, Paprotny, Cook, Purton, Chaplin

Best
Queensland: Hewago, Conroy, Wingrave, Griffiths, Fitzpatrick, Fraser
Tasmania: Dakin, Turner, O’Neill, Reeves, Jones, Simpson

Boomerangs 16.10 (106) d World XVIII 5.7 (37)

Goals
Boomerangs: Canerdo 4, Gerrand 3, Ugle-Hagan 2, Lake 2, Johnson 2, Holland, Jetta, Bynder
World XVIII: Hawash, Haddow, C. Walker, Uwandu, Haley

Best
Boomerangs: Smith, Jeffrey, Jetta, Mallard, Canerdo, Lui
World XVIII: Western, Kelly, C. Walker, B. Walker, Chan, Haddow

ROUND 3

NSW/ACT 11.13 (79) d Tasmania 7.10 (52)

Goals
NSW/ACT: Barling 2, Russell 2, Delahunty 2, Mack, McGuire, Thorne, Parker, Allen
Tasmania: Chaplin 3, Walsh 2, Routledge, Simpson

Best
NSW/ACT: Kannan, McGuire, Delahunty, Thorne, Brewer, McGrath
Tasmania: O’Neill, Burrows-Cheng, Dakin, Simpson, Turner

Queensland 17.11 (113) d Northern Territory 6.6 (42)

Goals
Queensland: Tozer 5, Hewago 4, Jeffery 3, Wischnat 3, Gore, Marytn
Northern Territory: Ngurrwuthun 3, Brown, Bruce, Rioli

Best
Queensland: Fitzpatrick, Tozer, Moloney, Jeffery, Liessi, Budarick
Northern Territory: Braun, Jungfer, Lampton, Rusca, Rosas, Brown.

Boomerangs 10.12 (72) d World XVIII 9.10 (64)

Goals
Boomerangs: Ugle-Hagan 4, Jetta 2, Lake, Holland, Gallagher, Gerrand
World XVIII: Haddow 3, B. Walker 2, C. Walker 2, Kelly, Murphy

Best
Boomerangs: Ugle-Hagan, Smith, Mifsud, Jetta, George, Dwyer
World XVIII: Kelly, Haddow, Fuatimau, Western, Walker, Haley.

Division Two Round 3 Wrap

The newly formatted Under 18 Academy Series continued over the weekend, despite the AFL Academy game going ahead meaning some teams were under strength. The series will take a break over the next two weekends, returning back on April 29th. (The postponed match between Brisbane Lions and Tasmania will be played on April 22nd)

Despite being undermanned, the GWS Giants Academy prevailed over Tasmania by 11 points at North Hobart Oval on Saturday.

Nicholas Shipley continued his stellar form in the academy series, collecting 17 disposals and laying 11 tackles as a strong player at the contest. Tom Highmore was also a prominent figure through the midfield with 18 disposals and seven marks.

It was however, Laine Fitzgerald (24 disposals, six clearances) and Doulton Langlands (18 disposals, seven marks) who were the difference in the contest, both racking up the ball through the midfield.

Both players are eligible to the open draft pool after GWS were stripped of part of their zone last month.

Tasmania’s captain Lachlan Clifford was the Mariners clear standout with 23 disposals, seven tackles, seven clearances and three goals – an effort which will do his possibilities of an Allies squad call up no harm.

TASMANIA                3.1    5.6    8.3    12.5 (77)
GWS ACADEMY         2.1    6.2    10.3 14.4 (88)        

GOALS
TASMANIA: Clifford 3, Buechner 3, Dixon 2, Pearce, Auckland, Brenner, B McGuinness
GWS ACADEMY: Paech 3, Lane 2, Stevens 2, Pollock, Walker, Highmore, Palombi, Briggs, Cuthbert, Koschitzche 

BEST
TASMANIA: Clifford, Buechner, Pearce, Dixon, Brenner
GWS ACADEMY: Highmore, Shipley, Langlands, Gaynor, Owen-Auburn, Fitzgerald


Sydney Swans bottom-age academy prospect Nick Blakey continued to turn heads, with a four goal effort helping the Swans to a 66-point victory over the Gold Coast Suns Academy.

Blakey finished the game with 18 disposals and booted all four of his goals in the second quarter to take the game away from the Suns.

Half-forward Luke Skrivanic showed speed and agility, booting three goals from 14 disposals. Overager Jake Brown collected 26 disposals, five clearances and booted two goals in one of his best games in the academy series so far.

For the Suns, Bailey Scott had 16 disposals, five inside 50s and kicked a goal from the midfield. Scott is eligible for North Melbourne, Geelong and Gold Coast at a discount.

Connor Nutting was the Suns’ best and moved well around the ground, while Sam Davidson had 18 disposals, nine marks and six inside 50s.

SYDNEY ACADEMY              4.3       8.5       10.9    15.11 (101)
GOLD COAST ACADEMY     3.2       3.3       4.5       5.5 (35) 

GOALS
Sydney Academy: Blakey 4, Skrivanic 3, Carroll 2, Brown 2, Wicks, Rankin, Carr, Stewart
Gold Coast Academy: Arnold, Foster, Watson, Scott, Beaman

BEST
Sydney Academy: 
Carroll, Skrivanic, Wicks, Stewart, Osborne, Rogers
Gold Coast Academy: Nutting, Heron, Foster, Smith, Arnold, Davidson


Brisbane Lions Academy defender Jack Payne continued to standout in the Under 18 Academy Series, aiding the Lions to a 50-point with over Northern Territory at TIO Stadium in Darwin on Saturday.

Payne’s strong one-on-one work was outstanding and he used the ball well coming out of defensive 50.

193cm key forward Billy Drake bagged three goals, as did smart half-forward Billy Johnson who worked hard all day.

Northern Territory themselves were undermanned with Zac Bailey missing through school football commitments in South Australia.

Bottom age 176cm forward Beau Schwarze booted four goals and was a hard match up for the Lions.

Tall Marcus Valastro played in multiple positions for NT and continued to compete hard all day, finishing as his side’s best player.

NORTHERN TERRITORY               1.1      3.2         6.4          8.6 (54)
BRISBANE LIONS ACADEMY       6.1      8.5       11.7        16.8 (104) 

GOALS
Northern Territory: Schwarze 4, Mu, Hutt, Bricknell, Althouse-Cooper
Brisbane Lions Academy: Drake 3, Johnson 3, Fletcher 2, Kristelly, Aston, Stackelberg, Coleman, Lambert, Fleming, Franks, Warren

BEST
Northern Territory: Valastro, Schwarze, Holt-Fitz, Green, Bull, Hutt
Brisbane Lions Academy: Matthews, Franks, Johnson, Payne, Tomkinson

Division Two Round 2 Wrap

The newly formatted Under 18 Academy Series continued over the weekend with two of the three games going ahead, after the Brisbane Lions vs. Tasmania game was cancelled after the poor weather in Queensland.

In the opening game of the weekend, Gold Coast academy pulled off a surprise 17-point victory against Greater Western Sydney academy at Blacktown on Saturday.

The Suns kicked five goals to one in the opening quarter and never looked back, with forward Damien Burke bagging five goals.

The 188cm forward combined for nine goals with 19-year-old Shawn Watson up forward, ensuring they would collect their first win of the carnival.

Giant key tall Jarrod Brander was quiet up forward, missing multiple chances on goal. The possible no.1 draft pick won’t be eligible to join the Giants, after they lost access to the talented teenager when the Albury/Murray region was removed from their zone.

Laine Fitzgerald showed his class and is one likely to catch the eye as the series continues, while Tom Highmore was strong across half-back.

Nick Shipley continues to work hard through the midfield, winning the ball at ease and marking well overhead. He may be another bolter as the season goes on.

Talented midfielder Charlie Spargo missed the contest with knee soreness.

GOLD COAST ACADEMY       5.0       7.1     10.2    12.3   (75)
GWS ACADEMY                    1.3       3.11    3.14    7.16   (58)

GOALS
Gold Coast academy: 
Burke 5, Watson 4, Arnold, Bowie, Simington
GWS academy: Fitzgerald 2, Gray 2, Stevens, Shipley, Edwards

BEST
Gold Coast academy: 
Foster, Burke, Graham, Crossley, Smith, Davidson
GWS academy: Highmore, Shipley, Fitzgerald, Brander, Gaynor, Budd


The Sydney Swans made it two wins on the trot defeating Northern Territory by 57-points at TIO Stadium.

Trailing at half-time, Swans forward Jack Hardman took it upon himself to lift his team booting four goals for the quarter, showing off his speed and agility inside 50.

Two famous names Mitchell Rogers and Nick Blakey also impressed for the Swans. Rogers is the son of former Essendon and Geelong player Andrew, whilst Blakey is the son of former Fitzroy and North Melbourne player John.

Rogers played well in defence, but is ineligible to qualify as a father-son selection due to Andrew not playing enough games for either team. On the other hand, Blakey qualifies for the Brisbane Lions and North Melbourne, as well as the Sydney Swans. Blakey bagged three goals for the game after backing up his impressive performance the previous weekend.

Rodney Baird was NT’s most impressive player taking strong marks in the defensive 50. Baird was on a scholarship with the Paramatta Eels in the NRL, but has now turned his attention to AFL.

Small forward Beau Schwarze booted five goals as his teams only multiple goal kicker.

NORTHERN TERRITORY                3.1       5.8       6.8       9.9 (63)
SYDNEY ACADEMY                          2.3       2.5       12.8    18.12 (120)

GOALS
Northern Territory: 
Schwarze 5, Derksen, Bricknell, Bailey, Prowse
Sydney Academy: Hardman 5, Skrivanic 3, Blakey 3, Maze 2, Rankin, Carr, Kilpatrick, Stern, Loone
BEST
Northern Territory: 
Bailey, Scrutton, Baird, Schwarze, Bricknell, Althouse-Cooper
Sydney Academy: Rogers, Stern, Bell, Maze, Robertson, Hardman

GWS Academy zone changes

GREATER Western Sydney have lost access to one of their most controversial recruiting zones from their academy pool after the AFL commission met yesterday and are believed to have removed part of the Giants southern NSW zone, which includes Albury.

Possible top ten prospects Jarrod Brander and Charlie Spargo both hail from southern NSW and thus have been ruled ineligible to be an academy selection to the Giants.

The pair are both boarding at private schools in Victoria and have been named in the GWS Giants Academy squad for the division two championships which begin next weekend.

Another change that the commission has implemented will be the number of academy prospects that the four northern clubs can take at the draft.

Depending on their finishing position on the ladder, teams that finish in the top four will be restricted to one academy player in the top 20 of the draft.

More to come

Division Two Round Two Wrap

NSW - Lucas Meline

QUEENSLAND academy members star, as one-sided matches once again continue in the second round of the Division Two Under 18 championship.

With the four sides converging in Tasmania, the sun shone through as Northern Territory and Queensland kicked off the day.

A superior Queensland side kept Northern Territory goalless in the first quarter, before running out 87-point winners.

Despite a sorry weekend for the Queensland AFL teams, their future is bright with both Brisbane Lions and Gold Coast Suns academy members in the best.

Gold Coast member Jack Bowes was best-on-ground with 31 disposals and two goals, performing exceptionally well in the midfield. Queensland’s captain also propelled the ball inside 50 on six occasions, giving their forwards a chance at gaining shots on goal.

Bowes continues to standout with few believing he will warrant a Top 10 pick in November and will be one of the handful of chances for the Hunter Harrison Medal for the best player in Division Two.

Brad Scheer is also tied to the Suns and was impressive with 27 disposals and eight clearances in the centre.

The Lions duo of Jacob Allison and Jack Rolls also stood out for Queensland.

Allison had 22 disposals and kicked two goals playing off the Half Forward Flank. The utility has been solid this year, although yet to perform as some would have expected but will likely be selected in the Allies team to take on the Divison One sides in June.

Fellow midfielder Jack Rolls slotted three majors and collected 25 disposals.

Despite the heavy loss, Brandon Parfitt and Jamie Hampton once again were NT’s best.

Parfitt collected 25 disposals while Hampton played off half back with 23 disposals and seven rebound 50s.

NT meet the undefeated NSW/ACT team and will need to improve significantly if they are to upset the Rams.

Re-watch the QLD v NT game below.

In the second game, NSW/ACT overcame a slow start to thrash Tasmania by 101-points.

The Rams kicked 17 goals to two after quarter time all but assuring their claim as the best Division Two side.

Up forward Todd Marshall (two goals) and Ben Davis (four goals) were the dominant players on the day.

Both players were expected to be linked with an academy club earlier in the year, but have since been deemed ineligible.

Marshall was tied with the GWS academy after spending two winters playing cricket in the UK before being deemed ineligible due to a registration error.

Davis himself is a 19-year old and was linked to the Sydney Swans, but due to him not nominating for the 2015 AFL Draft he cannot be selected by the Swans as an academy selection. Davis’ older brother (Abe) was Pick 70 in the 2014 draft to the Swans.

In the midfield Connor Byrne stood out with 28 disposals and eight clearances, while fellow GWS academy member Kobe Mutch made it two dominating games with 26 disposals and seven clearances.

Rams’ Mutch and Queensland’s Bowes will likely be battling it out this weekend to be the Hunter Harrison Medalist, joining names such as Ben Keays and Isaac Heeney.

Ruckman Max Lynch too was strong with 24 hit outs, giving the Rams midfield first use of the ball.

For Tasmania, Nick Dodge bounced back from a quiet game against NT to collect 25 disposals, ten tackles and five inside 50s & rebound 50s.

Ben McGuinness came off the ground in the second half with a hip complaint and may not play the final match this weekend on the Gold Coast.

Re-watch the TAS v NSW/ACT game below.

Matt Balmer’s scouting notes and more vision will be available on the event pages soon.

 

Matt Balmer’s May Power Rankings

DS - Josh Battle

In an AFL Draft Central feature, AFL Draft analyst Matt Balmer will update his Power Rankings on the first Monday of every month.

The Division Two Championships begin this weekend and make sure you keep checking AFL Draft Central for all the news from the matches.

The date of the AFL Draft has been announced, with Sydney hosting the draft on the Friday 25th November with a venue TBC.


It’s been an intriguing first month of the TAC Cup and Under 18 football, with injuries to two highly touted Vic Country prospects Jy Simpkin (broken leg) & Ben Ainsworth (knee) that have affected the rankings somewhat. Ainsworth was back playing for the Gippsland Power on the weekend, while it seems all but assured that Simpkin will miss an entire year nursing a broken leg after injuring it at school football.

The trial games gave a chance to see some of the Division Two sides, with NSW/ACT Rams player Harry Perryman jumping out as one of the most impressive while Curtis Marsden continues to rack up the stats.

The first edition of my Power Rankings will be the top 20 prospects as I see at the current point.

  1. Sam Petrevski-Seton
    181cm/76kg
    Claremont/Western Australia
    Sam Petrevski-Seton has had a solid start to the year, representing the AFL Academy and playing Colts football for Claremont. The stylish midfielder is likely to be a contender for the No.1 pick in November aided by his strong ability to win the footy on the inside and tackle hard. Petrevski-Seton kicks well on both feet and has a good burst of speed giving him the ability to break away from the stoppages. At Colts level, Petrevski-Seton is averaging just under 20 disposals and six tackles per game. The midfielder was named in the Under 18 All Australian side after a strong Under 18 Championships as a bottom ager in 2015.
  2. Harrison Macreadie
    196cm/89kg
    Henty/NSW-ACT Rams
    (GWS Academy)
    Harrison Macreadie is seen as one of the early draft picks for GWS in 2016, residing in the much talked about Riverina area of the GWS academy. Macreadie reads the play exceptionally well in defence and has the ability to come in front of opposition and take a pack mark. What also makes Macreadie a good prospect is his ability to play up the ground and push onto a flank or a wing. His mobility will make him an intriging prospect throughout the year, one who is likely to cost the Giants a lot of points come November. Macreadie performed well as a bottom ager in his six TAC Cup games for the Rams in 2015, averaging four marks and 18 disposals. I seriously think he could challenge for the number one pick on talent alone, whether a club with pick one see fit to use it on another clubs academy member to make them match the bid- it remains to be seen.
  3. Will Brodie
    189cm/82kg
    Murray Bushrangers/Vic Country
    Strong midfielder Will Brodie dominated the two AFL Academy matches in early April, collecting 20 & 22 disposals against VFL opposition. Brodie works hard at the stoppages and around the ground hunting the ball back from opposition. In his only appearance at TAC Cup level for the Bushrangers, Brodie collected 27 disposals dominating the clearances all day. Brodie has shown he can step up in big matches and is an important member for Vic Country in their attempt to go back-to-back at the Under 18 Championships. Brodie’s contested numbers were exceptional in his six TAC Cup games in 2015, with 43% of his total disposals being contested.
  4. Josh Battle
    192cm/90kg
    Dandenong Stingrays/Vic Country
    Athletic tall forward Josh Battle continues to put his name up as one of the first tall forwards picked in 2016 by kicking goals at all levels. Battle finds plenty of space inside 50 and marks the ball well overhead. Battle is averaging four goals a game for Dandenong Stingrays and also kicked two at the MCG while playing for the AFL Academy. At his height, Battle likely won’t be the number one target inside 50 in the future at AFL level, but with his strong heads and ability to get space between himself and his defender he can get up the ground as a leading target. Battle will be the main forward for Vic Country in the Under 18 Championships and if he can continue to perform well during the season there is no reason he can’t find himself in the top 20 on draft night.DS - Josh Battle 
  5. Hugh McCluggage
    185cm/75kg
    North Ballarat Rebels/Vic Country
    Hugh McCluggage has really jumped early this year with strong performances at the TAC Cup and for the AFL Academy. The smooth moving midfielder makes it appear like time stands still when he has the ball in stoppages. McCluggage appears like Scott Pendlebury when around opponents and on nearly every occasion has the ability to find a free player at the contest. Whilst McCluggage works hard in traffic, his efforts around the ground forward of centre are also good averaging over 20 disposals in the TAC Cup this season. A strong second half performance from McCluggage for the Rebels on Sunday, makes him a player to watch over the coming few months.

  6. Jacob Allison
    194cm/79kg
    Aspley/Queensland
    (Brisbane Lions academy)
    Jacob Allison is a tall midfielder who is aligned with the Brisbane Lions academy. At 194cm, Allison has the ability to play in multiple positions and was good enough to make the Under 18 All Australian team as a bottom ager. Allison has a long kick and he uses it well when coming from the defensive 50 to spot up a target further up ahead. Allison had two okay games for the AFL Academy but expect him to have a big influence on the Division Two Championships which begin this weekend.
  7. Will Setterfield
    190cm/79kg
    Sandringham Dragons/NSW-ACT
    (GWS Academy)
    Will Setterfield is another player that is tied with the GWS Academy and may challenge Harrison Macreadie as the first Giant picked in 2016. The tall inside midfielder has performed exceptionally well for Sandringham Dragons so far, averaging 20 disposals and five tackles this season. Setterfield misses the AFL Academy games with a calf niggle, but returned two weeks ago for the Dragons against the Northern Territory. Setterfield didn’t finish the game icing up his calf, but expect him to be fit to go in the starting midfield for NSW/ACT this weekend in the first round of the Division Two Championships.IMG_5585
  8. Jack Bowes
    187cm/78kg
    Cairns/Queensland
    (Gold Coast Academy)
    Midfielder Jack Bowes will be the first top academy talent that the Gold Coast Suns will have access to draft. Bowes moves well around the ground despite lacking elite pace uses the football well. Bowes kicked two goals in the AFL Academy match at the MCG and collected 14 disposals. The balanced midfielder knows how to find a football and despite missing a large chunk of 2015 with a knee issue, managed to produce a 22 disposal game in the NEAFL for the Suns.
  9. Sam Powell-Pepper
    188cm/83kg
    East Perth/Western Australia
    Sam Powell-Pepper is a strong inside midfielder who will complement Sam Petrevski-Seton in the midfield for Western Australia at the Under 18 Championships. Powell-Pepper averaged 14 disposals in the 2015 Under 18 Championships and has a strong workrate in the middle of the ground winning clearances and tackling hard. One knock on Powell-Pepper is his kicking effiency and is something that he does need to clean up, looking for a target ahead rather than booting the ball forward.
  10. Ben Ainsworth
    179cm/74kg
    Gippsland Power/Vic Country
    Ben Ainsworth is an exciting small forward who will be a name that you’ll hear about throughout the season. Ainsworth kicked 15 goals in the 2015 Under 18 Championships as a bottom ager indicating he can perform on the big stage. Ainsworth injured his knee at the TAC Cup earlier in the year with some at the ground fearing he may have done his ACL – Thankfully Ainsworth returned to the game to finish with 22 disposals and two goals. Ainsworth was rested from the second AFL Academy match against Geelong and returned to the TAC Cup action on the weekend. Ainsworth was reported on the weekend and will come under scrutiny in an off the ball clash which left an opponent with two jaw fractures. Ainsworth has a strong mark overhead and is expected to spend more time in the midfield as the season goes on improving his endurance.
  11. Josh Rotham
    192cm/79kg
    West Perth/Western Australia
    Josh Rotham is an athletic defender who spent his time in the AFL academy matches at Full Back. Rotham took three marks against Geelong VFL and has performed superbly for West Perth in the WAFL Colts averaging 22 disposals and three marks per game. Rotham has good speed and run from defence and in my eyes is better suited up the ground at centre half back. Rotham is good in the contest and one to keep an eye on at the Division One Championships.

    rotham
    Josh Rotham representing the AFL Academy at the MCG in April (Photo: AFL Photos)

     

  12. Andrew McGrath
    179cm/75kg
    Sandringham Dragons/Vic Metro
    Running half back Andrew McGrath has had a strong start to the TAC Cup season, averaging 28 disposals and six marks. McGrath is a superb athlete thanks to an outstanding junior athletics career winning the Victorian state 400 metres hurdle title in 2014. His athletic background makes the half back flank a position of his own, rebounding the ball well from defence. His game two weeks ago against Northern Territory collecting 36 disposals saw him follow up on his disposal, willing to get the ball back even after kicking it forward 40 metres. McGrath has one of the best disposal efficiency in the 2016 draft pool with McGrath also having strong leadership skills having been named captain of Brighton Grammar School.

    l-McGrath,-Andy
    Dragons player Andrew McGrath won the best first year player for them in 2015 (Photo: Sandringham Dragons)

     

  13. Harry Perryman
    184cm/75kg
    Collingullie-GP/NSW-ACT
    (GWS Academy)
    Harry Perryman has really jumped out of nowhere in the last few weeks. Perryman kicked four goals in the Collingullie-GP Grand Final last year- A match that had recruiters flocking to watching current GWS player Matthew Kennedy play. Perryman performed exceptionally well in the NSW/ACT trial match against Vic Country, with 27 disposals and five clearances. Perryman continued his form into the TAC Cup for the Rams with 32 and 29 disposals in his two games. Perryman has clean hands in the contest and gets a lot of space between himself and opponents all around the ground and is definitely a name to keep an eye on.harry perryman
  14. Jeremy Goddard
    202cm/95kg
    Claremont/Western Australia
    Tall ruckman Jeremy Goddard will likely be one of the few ruckman taken in the top half of the draft. Ruckman have been scarce at the top of the draft in the last few seasons and Goddard looms likely to be close to where Brodie Grundy was drafted at Pick 18 in 2012. Standing at 202cm, Goddard has dominated the WAFL Colts competition in 2016- averaging 37 hit outs per game. Goddard has a strong physicality and tackles well, following up his ruckwork around the ground.
  15. Zachary Sproule
    197cm/87kg
    Murray Bushrangers/NSW-ACT
    (GWS Academy)
    Zachary Sproule is another player who features in my Top 20 that is tied to an academy. The tall forward is linked with the GWS academy and has begun the season well for the Murray Bushrangers  despite only hitting the scoreboard twice. Sproule has the ability to get up the ground on long leads thanks to his good endurance and competes well inside forward 50. Sproule has good agility and also can get a good distance between himself and his opponents when moving for the ball inside 50.

    sproule
    Zach Sproule representing the AFL Academy at the MCG in April (Photo: AFL Photos)

     

  16. Jy Simpkin
    182cm/72kg
    Murray Bushrangers/Vic Country
    Small forward Jy Simpkin suffered a nasty injury earlier in the month, breaking his leg at school football while representing Scotch College. Simpkin has a good goal sense and kicked the winner in the thriller between Vic Metro and Vic Country in 2015. Simpkin performed well at the Under 18 Championships, booting seven goals from six games seeing him elevated to the Level Two academy squad. In his only appearance at TAC Cup level this season, Simpkin had 18 disposals and four goals. Simpkin has predominantly played as a forward, but at times did push through the midfield for the Bushrangers in 2015. Only time will tell how far Simpkin slides down the draft order but the talented forward is someone who will definitely be on clubs radars come November.
  17. Brad Scheer
    184cm/83kg
    Palm Beach/Queensland
    (Gold Coast Academy)
    Brad Scheer is another Gold Coast academy member who will likely be snapped up by the Suns come November. The inside midfielder was the best division two player at the Under 16 Championships back in 2014, where he averaged 26 disposals per match. Scheer has the ability to play forward and hit the scoreboard, where his two goals from 11 disposals against the Geelong VFL team for the AFL Academy earned him best on ground honours. Scheer once again was in the best in Queensland’s win over Western Jets in the TAC Cup, kicking 3.3 from his 25 disposal game.
  18. Jonty Scharenberg
    185cm/78kg
    Glenelg/South Australia
    Jonty Scharenberg is the brother of current Collingwood player Matthew and will likely be one of the early South Australian prospects at the 2016 draft. The inside midfielder plays a different role to his brother, working hard on the inside finding plenty of the ball. Scharenberg is good at the stoppages and was able to play two league games for Glenelg in 2015. A good performance from Scharenberg at the Under 18 Championships, should see his name thrown up as one of the early midfielders drafted in 2016.
  19. Dylan Clarke
    187cm/85kg
    Eastern Ranges/Vic Metro
    Dylan Clarke is another 2016 draftee with family ties already on AFL lists with brother Ryan being drafted by North Melbourne in 2015. At 187cm, the inside midfielder has dominated at TAC Cup level this season, averaging 28 disposals and eight tackles in his four games. Clarke is a strong player in the midfield where he tackles hard to win the ball and propels it forward on his left foot. Although his left foot isn’t elite, it is above average and he uses it well when looking for a target coming out of a stoppage. Clarke also can go forward and hit the scoreboard whilst has a superb tank giving him the ability to play on a wing.

    clarke
    Eastern Ranges midfielder Dylan Clarke in the 2015 TAC Cup Grand Final (Photo: AFL Photos)

     

  20. Brandan Parfitt
    177cm/72kg
    Nightcliff/Northern Territory
    Northern Territory midfielder Brandan Parfitt rounds out the Top 20. After winning the Northern Territory MVP and gaining All Australia honours in 2015 after averaging 16 disposals in the Championships, Parfitt will be looking to continue to perform at every level. Parfitt has good speed and agility making him a hard opponent on the inside. Two solid AFL Academy games also showed recruiters that he is a good runner meaning he can play off a flank and push forward. The one thing holding Parfitt back is his kicking skills which need to be cleaned up for the sub 180cm prospect to be drafted early.

 

There are always players stiff, especially Jarrod Berry who sits at No.21 on my list! Honourable mentions go to Curtis Marsden, Jordan Gallucci and key position forwards Todd Marshall & Patrick Kerr who I expect to feature in this list in the near future should they continue their solid start to the season.

 

Have any questions or want to know more? Send me a tweet @MattBalmer7