IN a new series focusing on the up and coming AFL Women’s Draft hopefuls, we take a look at some names who would be among their respective states top draft prospects for the 2020 AFL Women’s Draft.
Teah Charlton (South Adelaide)
Strengths: Aerial ability, defensive pressure, clean hands, X-factor
Charlton is considered South Australia’s top prospect for 2020 and it is easy to see why. In 2019, Charlton caught the eye at the AFL Women’s Under 18 Championship and played all of the three games rotating between midfield and half-forward. Having turned 18 already this year, Charlton has backed up her impressive middle-age year with a strong start to the SANFL Women’s season with South Adelaide, and no doubt would look to collect back-to-back All-Australian accolades if the AFL Women’s Under-18 Championships gets underway.
What sets Charlton aside from a number of other talented prospects is her ability to fly for marks, but also get the job done at ground level. In 2019, Charlton made the All-Australian side off the back of 14.3 disposals, 2.3 marks, 2.3 clearances and 3.3 inside 50s, but the stat that stood out was her whopping seven tackles per game.
Often prospects can provide the offensive prowess that impresses, but not too often do they have the defensive attributes to make them a two-way threat. Charlton has exactly that and it was no surprise to see her picked as the expected top player heading into the 2020 SANFL Women’s season by SANFL writer Zac Milbank.
In 2019, Charlton won the SANFL Women’s Breakthrough Player of the Year award thanks to playing primarily in the forward half and booting 11 goals from 12 games. She also averaged the 15.8 disposals, 2.8 marks, 7.3 tackles and 3.1 inside 50s to earned a place in the 2019 SANFL Women’s Team of the Year.
Charlton has continued that form this year for the Panthers. In her four SANFLW games this year, Charlton averaged 19 disposals, two marks, three clearances, four inside 50s and five tackles, including back-to-back games where she averaged 25 touches. If the championships go ahead, it will be hard not to spot her.
While there might not be as many AFL Women’s draft picks in this year’s draft due to no expansion clubs, when it comes to top-end talent, Charlton is certainly that. If she nominates her home state then Adelaide will have first chance to sign her up, and she would add to an already unbelievable forward line bursting with talent.