Tag: Jack Buller

Scouting notes: WAFL Colts – Round 14

A mixed bag of results did not take away from some outstanding performances in Round 14 of the West Australian Football League (WAFL) Colts, with many from the title-winning Western Australia Under 18s squad returning to action. Lenny Fogliani was on hand to provide his opinion-based notes on outstanding players from three of the four fixtures.

East Fremantle vs. Swan Districts

East Fremantle:

#2 Michael Wright

Playing as a defensive small forward, the Chapman Valley Junior was outstanding for the Sharks, performing his role to perfection. He accumulated 16 possessions, recorded six inside 50s, grabbed four marks, laid three tackles and kicked a goal to be one of his team’s best.

#7 Jeremy Sharp

The dual All-Australian was at his best for the Sharks providing a heap of offence from the wing. His penetrating skills, elite speed and endurance, skilful evasive moves and line-breaking capabilities were all on display against the Swans. He finished with a game-high 35 possessions, eight inside 50s, four marks and a goal.

#10 Trent Rivers

The East Fremantle captain led from the front for the Sharks, often throwing his body into stoppages to win the contested possession for his team. His ability to shrug off opponents is elite for someone his age, and at his size (191cm) this makes him a very attractive prospect. His decision-making, vision and skill execution were all on display for the home team. He finished with 26 possessions, five tackles and three goals.

#15 Jack Carroll

The 2017 WA U15s State Schoolboys representative continued his fine season for the Sharks with another sensational performance. Against the Swans, Carroll collected 21 possessions, laid four tackles and took two marks to be one of the Sharks’ best midfielders on the day.

#16 Chad Warner

The clearance machine was again brilliant for the home team, often winning the ball for his team and getting it forward. He accumulated 31 possessions, laid 13 tackles, recorded five inside 50s and kicked a goal in a telling performance. The Willetton junior shares similarities to West Coast’s Jack Redden in that both are tough, thrive on the contest, can win their own ball and apply serious pressure to the opposition.

#18 Chris Walker

The Fremantle Next Generation Academy (NGA) member was excellent on the half-back line, providing a heap of rebound as well as intercepting a host of Swans’ attacking forays. He collected 15 possessions, grabbed six marks, and laid two tackles to be a pivotal player for East Fremantle’s victory.

#20 Brandon Walker

The 2018 AFL Under 16s All-Australian member increased his draft stocks for 2020 with another superb performance. Against Swan Districts, Walker accumulated 16 possessions, took four marks and laid two tackles, playing primarily across the half-back line. His line-breaking capabilities, decision-making and disposal efficiency are all at a fantastic level for someone his age. He is a part of Fremantle’s Next Generation Academy.

#23 Luke Jackson

The Larke Medal runner-up showed why he is arguably the best ruck prospect in this year’s AFL Draft pool with another brilliant performance. He gathered 17 possessions, won a game-high 38 hit-outs, laid seven tackles and kicked a goal to be one of the most influential players in East Fremantle’s victory. His raw athleticism, ruck craft and endurance make him a tantalising prospect.

#25 Jai Jackson

Pushing through injury, Jackson played a great game playing as a hybrid forward. Against Swan Districts, Jackson collected 11 possessions, laid seven tackles, took three marks and kicked a goal to be one of the more dangerous forwards on the ground. As well as playing as a forward, Jackson has demonstrated an ability to push into the midfield where he uses his big frame to crash and bash his way through stoppages to get the ball going forward for his team.

#29 Reuben McGuire

The Wesley College student always provided a target inside 50 for his team-mates to kick to. He finished with 11 possessions, 12 hit-outs, four marks, two tackles and two inside 50s. His raw athleticism, power and aggression make him an attractive key forward prospect.

Swan Districts:

#11 Ashley Brockbernd

The 2017 WA U16s State Academy member tried hard all day for the Swans, playing off the half-back line. Against East Fremantle, Brockbernd accumulated 11 possessions, laid six tackles, took two marks and recorded two inside 50s to try and keep his team within touching distance of the rampant Sharks.

#12 Brenton Hilton

The Ellenbrook junior was prolific for the Swans playing in defence. He was trying to thwart plenty of East Fremantle’s attacking forays, while also trying to provide plenty of rebound from the defensive zone. He finished with 22 possessions, five tackles, four inside 50s and three marks.

#18 Jake Pasini

Having made a name for himself as a strong key defender, Pasini showed off his versatility playing as a big-bodied inside midfielder against East Fremantle. He bullocked his way to 17 possessions, three marks, two tackles and two inside 50s.

#21 Jackson Ryan

The 17-year-old showed why he could be one of the rising key forward prospects out of Western Australia for next year’s AFL Draft with a powerful performance. Despite a lack of attacking forays, Ryan always provided an option for his team-mates and clunked four marks. He finished with two goals from seven possessions.

#25 Jermarl Daly

The South Hedland product showed flashes of his brilliance against the Sharks. One moment of his brilliance came in the second quarter, when he took a fantastic pack mark and then nailed the goal to bring the Swans within a goal of the Sharks. He finished with seven possessions, three tackles and a goal.

#34 Jak Watson

Arguably Swan Districts’ best player, Watson never stopped trying for the visitors but to no avail. He accumulated 27 possessions, laid eight tackles, grabbed three marks and recorded two inside 50s in a dazzling performance.

#52 Atem Deng

The West Coast Eagles Next-Generation Academy member was sublime for the Swans, playing on the half-forward line. He gathered 15 possessions, laid four tackles and recorded three inside 50s as he tried to create attacking opportunities for the visitors. Last year Deng finished seventh in Swans’ Best & Fairest, and another strong year would increase his draft chances.

#59 Ty Sears

The bottom-age star was brilliant for Swan Districts off the half-back line. Against East Fremantle, Sears collected 19 possessions, recorded three inside 50s and took two marks as he tried to create attacking drive from the defensive half.

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East Perth vs. Peel Thunder

East Perth:

#2 Adam Boules

Stationed on the wing, the Mount Hawthorn junior was prolific for the Royals, as he always provided a link for their attacking forays and displayed a desire to run defensively as well. He gathered 22 possessions, laid 11 tackles, took five marks and recorded four inside 50s to be one of the best for the Royals.

#8 Cooper Sparks

The Deanmill product continues to amass an excellent season for East Perth with another polished performance against the Thunder. He accumulated a team-high 25 possessions, recorded five inside 50s, laid four tackles, took two marks and kicked a goal to be the Royals’ best player on the night.

#9 Sebit Kuek

The West Coast Eagles’ NGA member was dangerous in the forward line for the Royals, always providing an option for his team-mates. He gathered 11 possessions, won 18 hitouts, took three marks, laid two tackles, recorded two inside 50s and kicked a goal in a dazzling performance.

#15 Luke Lombardi

Playing on the half-back line, Lombardi showed why he could be a bolter for next year’s AFL Draft. He finished with 14 possessions, three marks and two tackles, showing off poise, composure and sound-decision-making with ball in hand.

#19 Joshua Hubbard

The Ellenbrook junior was outstanding for the Royals, rotating between the half-back line and the wing. His run and carry, link-up play, decision-making and skill execution were all pivotal in the Royals’ effort to defeat the Thunder. He finished with 17 possessions, six inside 50s, and four tackles.

#37 Joshua Ladhams

The Southerners product was instrumental in the ruck for East Perth. He finished with 10 possessions, 33 hit-outs, five marks and four tackles, while being in an entertaining duel against Brendan Cooke (nine possessions and 30 hit-outs).

#39 Cody Rodgers

Playing in defence and up forward, Rodgers competed hard all night for the home team. He only gathered five possessions, but took three marks and kicked three goals to be a potent option up forward. His contested marking was a real feature of his game against the Thunder.

#49 Rhai-Arn Cox

The 2017 WA U16s State Academy member showed off his flair and offensive tricks in the forward half for the Royals. He collected 14 possessions, recorded two inside 50s and kicked a goal in a solid performance. As a small forward, Cox boasts excellent goal sense and the ability to take strong contested marks – similar to how West Coast star Liam Ryan plays.

Peel Thunder:

#1 Tyrone Thorne

The WA U18s State Academy member was dangerous in the forward half for the Thunder, always on the move and ready to pounce on any scoring opportunities that came his way. Thorne also showed why he is considered to be one of the better small forwards in this year’s AFL Draft pool with six tackles to his name. He finished with 11 possessions and two goals.

#2 Jackson Knight

Currently fourth in the WAFL Colts Coaches Award, Knight continued his excellent campaign with another solid performance for the Thunder. Against East Perth, Knight accumulated 22 possessions, laid eight tackles, and recorded seven inside 50s to be one of the more damaging midfielders on the night.

#3 Roy George

Stationed in defence, George showed why he is such a prodigious talent with his intercepting and rebounding a real feature of his game. He gathered 10 possessions, took two marks, and even drifted forward to kick a goal.

#8 Zachary Rankin

Stationed on the wing, Rankin played an excellent two-way game for the Thunder, being defensively accountable but also showing off some offensive flair. Against the Royals, Rankin gathered 18 possessions, grabbed five marks, laid five tackles and recorded three inside 50s to be one of the more instrumental players in Peel’s victory.

#11 Jarvis Pina

The Peel Thunder captain was pivotal in his team’s victory over the Royals with a game-high 33 possessions, five marks, five tackles and two inside 50s. His reading of the play, decision-making and penetrating skills were all on display for the recruiters to see.

#13 Cameron Gavin

The Halls Head junior was outstanding for the Thunder, finishing with 15 possessions, five inside 50s, four marks and two goals in a sizzling performance. His forward half presence was outstanding for the Thunder and he played a big role in the victory with his decision-making and skill execution a real feature of his game.

#18 Ben Middleton

The leader in this year’s WAFL Colts Leading Goalkicker Award, Middleton showed why he is arguably the best forward in the competition. In nine games for the Thunder, Middleton has kicked 18 goals – three ahead of East Perth’s Sebit Kuek and West Perth’s Ewan Brazier. Against the Royals, Middleton kicked two goals from eight possessions and four marks.

#27 Jack Sears

Playing on the wing, Sears sent a timely reminder to recruiters on why he should be considered one of the best players in this year’s WAFL Colts competition. He collected 23 possessions, took eight marks and recorded six inside 50s in a powerful display.

Subiaco vs. Claremont

Claremont:

#3 Leno Thomas

The Fremantle NGA player was lively in the forward half for the Tigers. As well as being gifted with offensive tricks, Thomas showed off a defensive side of his game against the Lions, recording five tackles. He finished with 10 possessions, four marks, two inside 50s and a goal.

#5 Ronin O’Connor

Stationed in defence, O’Connor was solid for the Tigers, often repelling Subiaco’s attacking forays. He gathered 12 possessions, laid six tackles and took three marks, but it was his leadership down back that caught the eye. His ability to communicate with his team-mates about where they should position themselves was outstanding for someone his age.

#8 Jack Buller

Arguably best afield for the Tigers, Buller was instrumental playing as either a key position player or when he pinch-hit in the ruck. His strength in the contest was outstanding, often barging his way through the opposition to get the ball going forward for his team. His final statistics were 16 possessions, 26 hit-outs and three tackles.

#12 Joel Western

A bottom-age prospect, Western showed why he is such a promising prospect for the 2020 AFL Draft. Against Subiaco, Western accumulated 18 possessions, took three marks, recorded three inside 50s and laid two tackles, from the wing. His speed, agility, vision, decision-making and skill execution were all on display.

#14 Jack Cooley

The 2016 WA U15s State Schoolboy was outstanding in the midfield for the Tigers, accumulating 33 possessions, taking five marks, laying five tackles and recording five inside 50s as he willed his team to victory. His power to burst away from stoppages and to win the clearance was simply phenomenal

#15 Liam Henry

The U18 All-Australian was electrifying around the ground for the Tigers, using his speed, agility and evasive tricks to weave his way in and out of congestion. Once in space, Henry was balanced and had the poise to execute his skills to a high level. His decision-making was also elite against the Lions. He finished with 26 possessions, six marks, three tackles and two goals.

#16 Anthony Davis

Stationed on the half-back line, Davis showed why he is considered to be a draft smokey this year. Against the Lions, Davis gathered 13 possessions, laid six tackles and took three marks as he tried to repel plenty of Subiaco’s attacking forays.

#22 Jye Clark

The younger brother of Geelong’s rising star Jordan Clark, Jye showcased why he is considered a top-five midfielder in the competition. Like his older brother, Jye is physical in the contest, prepared to throw his body on the line, is a sound-decision maker and is an excellent distributor whether by hand or foot. Against Subiaco, Clark finished with 35 possessions, five inside 50s, three marks and three tackles.

#25 Callum Jamieson

The North Beach junior was terrific for the Tigers, rotating between the forward line and the ruck. He gathered 10 possessions, won 20 hitouts, laid four tackles, took two marks and kicked two goals in a powerful display.

#35 Isaiah Butters

In just his second game of WAFL Colts, Butters showed he belongs at the level with a lively performance against Subiaco. He collected 18 possessions, took six marks, laid three tackles, recorded three inside 50s and kicked two goals in a dazzling display.

Subiaco:

#1 Jacob Peletier

The Esperance product was superb in the midfield for the Lions, racking up 24 possessions, recording three inside 50s, taking two marks and laying two tackles. His leadership throughout the game was exemplary, often throwing his body on the line to try and win the contested ball for his team.

#8 Ben Golding

Against the Tigers, Golding produced a performance that highlighted why he is currently third in the WAFL Colts Coaches Award. He gathered 29 possessions, laid 10 tackles, took eight marks, recorded five inside 50s and kicked a goal as he tried to will his team to victory. The only blemish on his performance was two behinds.

#19 Lachlan Henderson

Stationed at centre half-back, Henderson was outstanding for the home team, often repelling Claremont’s attacking forays. The 17-year-old finished with 10 possessions, four hit-outs and two marks in a solid performance.

#21 Connor Patterson

In just his fifth game of WAFL Colts, Patterson showed signs of being a gun player for the Lions. He gathered nine possessions, took three marks, laid two tackles, recorded two inside 50s and kicked two goals in a lively performance.

#27 Trey Kennedy

The Warwick-Greenwood junior was superb off the half-back line for the Lions, amassing 18 possessions, four marks, four tackles, two inside 50s and a goal. His defensive accountability, combined with his decision-making and skill execution make him an elite half-back flanker.

#37 Abraham Clinch

The Warwick-Greenwood product was prolific in the midfield for the Lions, gathering a team-high 32 possessions, recording five inside 50s, taking four marks, laying two tackles and kicking a goal. His desire to throw his body into congestion to win the ball for his team is outstanding for someone his age.

#41 Tyler Broughton

The 2018 WA U16s State Academy member was excellent in the forward line for the Lions, using his speed, agility and flair to create scoring opportunities for his team. He accumulated 12 possessions, laid five tackles, took four marks, recorded three inside 50s and kicked a goal to be one of the most dangerous forwards on the ground.

#50 Xavier Peacock

The 2018 WA U18s State Academy player showed why he is one of the best ruckmen in this year’s WAFL Colts competition. His work around the ground, ruck craft and strength in the contest were all on display. He finished with 12 possessions, 17 hit-outs, three marks, three inside 50s and two tackles.

WAFL Colts weekly wrap: Reigning premiers keep their season alive

AS the West Australian Football League (WAFL) Colts clubs grow closer to welcoming back their state Under-18 heroes to the fold, it was up to those players that remained at Colts level to help their teams over the line in Round 13.

WAFL Colts Round 13

Subiaco 11.14 (80) defeated East Fremantle 5.10 (40)

A longer list of contributors and a more potent forward line were the key elements in Subiaco’s 40-point win against East Fremantle at Leederville Oval on Saturday morning.

This clash shaped as a early elimination final with both teams sitting adrift of the top five (Subiaco by two and a half games and East Freo by an extra game). So while for the loser it was lights out for season 2019, the winner still had an opportunity to put some pressure on those above them. Subiaco came into this fixture with the better form having won two of their last three games, while the Sharks were in terrible form having lost their last eight in a row.

The reigning premiers kicked the first goal of the game courtesy of some quick ball movement ending with a goal to Jacob Peletier and their lead was soon doubled by strong forward play by Abraham Clinch. The Sharks were trying to get their running game into action but despite a few forward thrusts they were repelled by the Subiaco defence.

Harvey Bishop made it three goals without reply for the Lions, but some fine forward line pressure by Mitchell Cusworth caused his opponent to drop a mark and then was able to maintain his efforts by laying a fine tackle which set up Jack Carroll for the Sharks’ first major of the day. East Fremantle’s intent was certainly there, they just needed an outlet to finish off their hard work. The quarter time score saw the Lions up by 10 points but both teams had the same amount of scoring shots.

Subiaco ramped up their pressure early in the second quarter and Abraham Clinch was the beneficiary, taking a uncontested mark from the square to give the Lions a three goal lead, and soon after, he kicked his third for the first half. However, the Sharks kept fighting and their best move of the match led to a goal from Tom Muskarovsky. Light rain then hit Leederville Oval which saw a already heavy surface due to a week of constant rain become just that bit more boggy. It led to plenty of stoppages and Subiaco held sway by 18 points at the long break.

The third quarter saw Subiaco break the game open as they kicked four goals to one to set up a 37 point lead. Sandon Page, Peletier and Clinch were all crucial with their efforts in the term while East Fremantle’s lone goal came from a strong mark and goal from Reuben McGuire. Once again it was not about effort by the Sharks, it was about finding the end product in the forward 50 to capitalize on their hard work.

The Sharks started the final term strongly when McGuire goaled from the square cutting the lead to 29 and offering just a glimmer of an opportunity. However Subiaco’s forward pressure was too much to handle leading to a Patrick Mullane goal.

Some adept round ball skills by Page were very handy on the slick surface leading to his second of the day. A final margin of 40 points was probably a fair reflection of the contest. When Subiaco attacked, they did so in numbers and had terrific outlets in place to convert their opportunities. Meanwhile, East Fremantle had to work extremely hard for whatever they could conjure up and they lacked the targets that their opposition had.

Star of the day:

Despite the ups and down in their premiership defence, Subiaco have had a few constant figures who have shone come victory or defeat. One of them had been Abraham Clinch and Saturday was no exception. The top ager was exceptional, floating in between midfield and forward to rack up 35 disposals, nine marks, seven inside 50s six tackles and three goals. Clinch has averaged 28 disposals in 2019.

Other notable performances:

Benjamin Golding has also had a very impressive season to date. A year younger than Clinch, Golding tallied 28 disposals (one more than his season average), seven marks, four tackles and six inside 50s. Sandon Page was a excellent target inside 50 where he had 20 disposals, eight marks and kicked two goals. For the Sharks, Reuben McGuire was tireless with 17 disposals and two goals while Dylan Curley worked hard across the ground with 15 disposals and a goal.

The future

Subiaco are walking a tightrope with one slip likely ending their title defence. If today was an elimination final, next Friday night is their grand final against Claremont – where a victory will see them close the gap to the Tigers to under two games. Meanwhile, East Fremantle will continue their quest to end their long losing streak, this time against Swan Districts at home.

In other games:

Claremont 13.10 (88) defeated South Fremantle 5.4 (34)

The Tigers made it five wins from their last six games with a resounding 54-point victory against South Fremantle at Claremont Oval.

After a extremely even first half which saw Claremont down by three goals at one point, a nine goal to one onslaught after the break saw the Tigers win in emphatic fashion with South Fremantle kicking just one goal after quarter time. Charlie Malone’s impact was a real catalyst for change with three of his four goals coming in the all-important third term. That was where the home team slammed on eight goals to one behind and turned a two point lead at the long break into a 51-point advantage. Jack Buller gave his midfielders supreme service around the ground with 36 hit-outs along with 20 disposals, five tackles and four marks. Bottom-ager Logan Young was tough and hard with nine tackles to go along with 17 disposals and a goal. For the Bulldogs, Jack Musika was tireless in his efforts with 21 disposals, seven inside 50s and six tackles.

East Perth 8.9 (57) defeated Swan Districts 6.7 (43)

The mid-season woes of Swan Districts continued as they fell to their fourth consecutive defeat, this time a 14-point loss to East Perth in Bunbury on Saturday afternoon.

The teams were separated by less than a kick throughout the first three quarters, and the Black and Whites took a seven-point lead into the final 25 minutes after holding the Royals scoreless in the third term. But with Swan Districts down to just one fit player on the bench, East Perth took advantage kicking four goals to one to run out 14 point winners. The victory is East Perth’s fourth straight and sees the Royals join Swans and on 7-4 and one step closer to sealing a finals berth.

West Perth 13.8 (86) defeated Perth 7.5 (47)

A six goal to nil opening half set up West Perth for their eighth win of the season and take sole possession of second place in the process as they defeated Perth by 39 points on Joondalup Arena on Sunday afternoon.

The victory was the Falcons’ fourth in succession and at this moment they are playing the type of football that puts you well and truly in premiership contention. The goalscoring load was shared between nine individual players with bottom age trio Cooper Blackburn, Tommy Taylor-Shreeve, and Corey Rundle along with Ryan Hudson each kicking two. The score could have gotten very ugly for the visitors when the Falcons kicked the first of the third term to make it seven goals to nil, but to the Demons credit, they outscored their opponents from that moment seven goals to six.

In terms of disposals it was the regular duo of Tyron Hindmarsh (31 disposals, seven marks and four inside 50s) and Koopah Todd (25 disposals, nine marks and five inside 50s) who led the way. The ruck duo of bottom ager Michael Mallard(25 hit/outs) and Adam Gerritsen (18 hit/outs) gave their following divisions great service all day. For Perth, the duo of Kaden Elliott (27 disposals and six inside 50s) along with Simon Hayward (26 disposals and five inside 50s along with a goal) gave wholehearted displays throughout the four quarters.

WAFL Colts weekly wrap: Royals loom as premiership contenders after another victory

WITH the top two facing off this weekend for the first time in the West Australian Football League (WAFL), it gave the teams directly below them a great opportunity to make some ground on the loser of that contest.

WAFL Colts Wrap – Round 13

East Perth 10.9 (69) defeated Perth 5.4 (34)

East Perth kept pace with the top three after winning their third game in succession, defeating a gallant Perth by 35 points at Leederville Oval.

The Royals came into this contest on the back of two wins while conversely Perth suffered a hiding at the hands of ladder leaders Peel last week and had lost three in a row. It was a must win game for the Demons as they wouldn’t have wanted to lose further touch with the top five as we enter the final two months of the home and away season.

East Perth got off to a quick start through a mark and fine goal from a acute angle by the extremely talented Rhai-arn Cox and a clever snap by Max Fabre then doubled the Royals’ lead. Perth were struggling to clear the ball from their defensive area with East Perth dominating territory. But some quick and direct play down the middle of the ground led to their first major by Simon Hayward. The Royals took a seven point lead into the first change.

Perth got off to the dream start in the second quarter when 15-year-old James Ettia kicked the first of the second term and the confidence from their play was clearly evident. It was now a very tight contested affair and the free flowing East Perth from the first 15 minutes of the contest had been slowed quite substantially. The teams then traded goals midway through the quarter. An excellent lunging mark by Kyle Robinson which he duly converted gave the Royals a margin of nine points which they took into the long break. The question heading into the second half was if the extremely youthful Demons side could maintain their effort for the full four quarters.

The Demons got the best answer to those questions at the start of the last term when bottom ager Deekan Garlett kicked his first of the game. After a quiet period, a improvised piece of play by Cox and bottom ager Josh Clements set up Cooper Sparks who took a strong mark and converted. Robinson then kicked the Royals’ second consecutive goal and with that the home were able to grab momentum with a 16-point margin. The Demons were still getting their hands on the ball but had seemingly lost their structure.

Robinson benefitted from a down the ground free kick to kick his third and danger signs were flashing for the Demons as they were getting beaten out of the middle. But as they had done all game they kept pressing and the extremely hard working Hayward finished off some good work. Cox put the game to bed well and truly with a fine one on one mark 15 metres out which he duly converted. Clements was then rewarded for some hard running to kick his first of the game to push the lead to five goals and Fabre then put the icing on the cake on a fine second half performance. East Perth restricted Perth to just four scoring shots in the second half, a fine performance.

Star of the day: Rhai-arn Cox

He may have had a tough start to the season, but Rhai-arn Cox has returned to the Royals seemingly revitalised and ready to make a real impact both for his team and for his own future prospects at the senior level. In this contest he was a nightmare matchup for the Perth defenders with his physicality and natural ability. He remained permanently stationed deep in the attacking 50 throughout the contest and finished with 16 disposals (all by foot) nine marks, five inside 50s and 2.3. Being still only 18, he will undoubtedly continue to grow into his body (currently 174cm /76 kg) but seeing him in this type of form and if he keeps it up on a regular basis, he looms as a very exciting prospect indeed.

Special mention has to go to Adam Boules who was colossal with his work-rate, amassing 24 disposals, 11 marks and eight tackles while Kyle Robinson was a strong focal point with 12 disposals, six marks and three goals. Meanwhile Simon Hayward was magnificent for the Demons once again with 28 disposals, eight marks, six tackles, five inside 50s and two goals.

The aftermath:

The Royals are certainly a team on the rise and looming as a real contender on the horizon. This season in particular there seems to clear break away between the top five and the rest. East Perth are only one game from second and face a real test of their credentials in the next three weeks when they face Swan Districts, Peel and West Perth in succession. We will know just exactly where they are truly placed in the pecking order after those games. After last week’s abysmal performance, this week was certainly a turnaround for Perth. Although they didn’t claim the four points, their effort was terrific throughout the whole four quarters, and it was just that they came up against a better opponent on the day. Keep playing like that and they will get some wins up between now and the end of the season.

Peel Thunder 10.17 (77) defeated Swan Districts 5.9 (39)

Peel Thunder showed once and for all that they are the team to beat in 2019 after defeating second placed Swan Districts by 38 points at David Grays Arena in Mandurah. However the final score said little about what was a highly competitive first three quarters.

Peel led by seven points at quarter time and extended it to 23 points at the long break. The visitors were not going to give up without giving a strong account of themselves and dominated the third term kicking 3.4 to one behind and cutting the margin to just two points with a quarter to play. But with Ben Middleton leading the way, Peel slammed on six goals to one in the last term to run out resounding winners.

In truth, Peel were deserved winners with 13 more scoring shots (27-13) and 11 more 50s (47-36). Middleton was monumental for the home side taking eight marks and kicking four goals and four behinds. With the victory, Peel have opened up a two game gap at the top of the table and with their outstanding percentage, it is akin to a three-game buffer. There is plenty of work for the Black and Whites to do to reclaim their mantle that they had for the first half of the season.

West Perth 10.10 (70) defeated Subiaco 5.9 (39)

West Perth moved into equal second position with Swans after a composed 31-point win against Subiaco at Joondalup Arena.

In keeping with the majority of the games this round, we saw a tight first 50 minutes of play, but the better team stamped their authority on the contest in the second half. In this case, West Perth kicked six goals to two to reign supreme. The in-form Corey Rundle Was terrific even again with the bottom age Falcons forward kicking another three goals to add to four from the previous week. Another player who has been in sparkling form in 2019 is Koopah Todd with the top age midfielder amassing 34 disposals, ten marks, five tackles and a goal. He received fine support once again from Callum Johnson with 27 disposals and ten marks. Abraham Clinch was Subiaco’s best with 26 disposals, six marks and five inside 50s.

Claremont 13.12 (90) defeated East Fremantle 2.10 (22)

A completely dominant first half performance from Claremont set the Tigers on their way to a thumping 68-point victory at East Fremantle Oval.

The visitors kicked eight goals to one in the first two quarters with Thomas Baldwin kicking two majors. Ben Elliott kicked two of his own in the second half to give him three for the game and continue the onslaught. Jye Clark continued his very consistent season with 33 disposals and seven inside 50s for the Tigers. The youngster is averaging an impressive 26 disposals in 2019. Ruckman Jack Buller gave his midfielders silver service with 35 hit-outs to go along 20 disposals and five marks.

It was a dark day for East Fremantle kicking just two goals game and after starting the season 2-0, they have now lost eight straight and slipped down to the bottom of the ladder. Bottom ager Jack Carroll was a clear standout for the Sharks with 29 disposals, eight marks, four tackles and five inside 50s.

Scouting notes: Western Australia vs. South Australia

IN round two of the NAB AFL U18 Championships, South Australia defeated Western Australia by 11 points at Optus Stadium. The Croweaters’ accuracy in front of goal proved to be the difference in the result, with WA butchering many attacking opportunities.

Below were the best players in the game.

WESTERN AUSTRALIA

#4 Riley Garcia
The Caversham Junior produced a performance that showed why he is one of the leading prospects from Western Australia in this year’s AFL Draft. Against the Croweaters, Garcia racked up 28 possessions (including a game-high 15 contested possessions), won eight clearances, recorded six inside 50s and kicked a goal in a dazzling performance. The highlight of his game was in the last quarter when he was able to sneak through a goal to reduce the margin to just nine points.

#5 Liam Henry
The Fremantle Next-Generation Academy member was lively in the forward half for the Sandgropers often using his speed, skill and flair to try and create attacking opportunities. He gathered 19 possessions, took eight marks, recorded four inside 50s, and had three score assists. When stationed in the forward line, Henry emulates a similar skill set to that of Fremantle star Michael Walters with his evasiveness and goal sense.

#10 Deven Robertson
The captain tried hard all day to try and inspire his team to another famous victory, but unfortunately to no avail. He finished with a game-high 32 possessions (13 contested), eight tackles, five inside 50s, five marks, four rebounds, and three clearances in another powerful display. His contested possession and clearance work is similar to how Melbourne champion Nathan Jones controls stoppages.

#14 Chad Warner
The East Fremantle product tried hard all day in the midfield for the Sandgropers, often throwing himself into stoppages to win the ball for his team. He accumulated 20 possessions (12 contested), laid six tackles, won five clearances, recorded five inside 50s and had two score assists.

#17 Jeremy Sharp
The 2018 AFL U18s All-Australian was solid on the wing for the Sandgropers with 19 possessions, five marks, three rebound 50s, three clearances and a goal. His link-up play out of defence was outstanding, and his penetrating skills were on display throughout the whole game. The highlight of his game happened in the first quarter, when he was able to dance his way around an opponent before slotting a goal from 50 metres out.

#26 Trey Ruscoe
Stationed at centre half-back, Ruscoe did all he could to try and repel South Australia’s attacking forays. Opposed to Damon Freitag, Ruscoe accumulated 12 possessions (six contested), took four marks and laid four tackles, while holding Freitag goalless and limiting him to five possessions. In the final quarter he was moved into an attacking position, where he consistently provided a contest and brought the ball to ground for the small forwards to crumb.

#27 Jack Buller
In his first game for Western Australia this year, Buller showed why he is such a highly-rated prospect. He gathered 13 possessions (nine contested), won eight hit-outs, took six marks, recorded three rebounds and won two clearances in an strong display. His ability to play either end of the ground, as well as pinch-hitting in the ruck, makes him a tantalising prospect.

#32 Luke Jackson
The former Australian basketballer tried manfully to guide his team to victory, often giving his midfielders first use of the ball due to his elite ruck work. He finished with 14 possessions (12 contested), 35 hit-outs, five clearances, and three tackles in an excellent performance. His follow-up work was a real highlight of his game.

#35 Trent Rivers
The WA leadership group member was solid down back for the Sandgropers with 22 possessions, six marks, and three rebounds. His positioning, accumulation, and reading of the play were outstanding.

SOUTH AUSTRALIA

#1 Kysaiah Pickett
The nephew of Norm Smith Medallist Byron Pickett, Kysaiah showed flashes of brilliance throughout the game against Western Australia. He finished with just six possessions and a goal, but always looked dangerous when he was in the forward half. His goal in the third quarter was sublime – gathering the ball in a pack, weaving his way through traffic and snapping truly from an impossible angle on the boundary line.

#7 Dylan Stephens
Arguably best afield, Stephens showed why he is considered a potential top 10-15 prospect for this year’s AFL Draft. In a powerful performance, the Norwood product accumulated 23 possessions (nine contested), laid six tackles, recorded five inside 50s and won two clearances, while displaying a ton of class in the slippery conditions.

#9 Cameron Taheny
Another prospect that has the potential to go top 10-15 in this year’s AFL Draft, Taheny showed why he is so highly touted with another excellent performance, this time against Western Australia. Stationed in the forward line, Taheny finished with 10 possessions, two marks, two tackles and two goals to be South Australia’s most damaging option forward of centre. In the slippery conditions, his classy and penetrating kicking skills really stood out.

#15 Harry Schoenberg
Playing in the midfield with occasional stints on the half-forward flank, Schoenberg was outstanding for South Australia with 20 possessions (13 contested), five tackles, four clearances, two marks and two inside 50s. His brutal contested possession work on the inside, allowed him to get the ball to the outside runners.

#18 Jackson Mead
The son of Port Adelaide’s inaugural Best and Fairest winner Darren Mead, Jackson was outstanding in the midfield for the Croweaters with 16 possessions (10 contested), six tackles, three clearances, two marks and a goal. His composure, decision-making and skills were all on display.

#19 Luke Edwards
The son of dual Adelaide premiership star Tyson Edwards, Luke showed why he is so highly touted for next year’s AFL Draft with a sizzling performance. Against the Sandgropers, he gathered 20 possessions, took five marks, laid four tackles and recorded three rebounding 50s, while stationed on the half-back line.

#20 Lachlan McNeil
The Woodville-West Torrens product was excellent in the midfield for South Australia, often throwing himself into congestion to win the ball for his team. He finished the game with 18 possessions (10 contested), 13 tackles, six inside 50s, four clearances, two marks and two rebounding 50s.

#33 Dyson Hilder
Stationed at centre half-back and opposed to Western Australia’s livewire Elijah Taylor, Hilder was instrumental in negating Western Australia’s attacking forays. He finished with 15 possessions (five contested), seven marks, and four rebounding 50s.

#35 Karl Finlay
The North Adelaide product was excellent for the Croweaters, playing as the full back he was influential in halting WA’s scoring opportunities. He gathered 16 possessions (seven contested), took six marks, laid five tackles and recorded three rebounding 50s.

AFL Under 18 National Championships preview: Western Australia

THE 2019 West Australian Under-18 representative side is stacked with exciting prospects, with plenty who will catch the eye and rise in stocks during the carnival. A crop of East Fremantle talents will be a key feature, with a balanced midfield, some damaging outside types, and a certain leading ruck prospect forming the base of the squad. With five players named in last year’s U16 All Australian side, there will no doubt be a handful of bottom-agers to make a mark, too.

Key players:

Jack Buller
Claremont | Key Position Utility
16/05/2001 | 198cm | 92kg

Playing in defence, Buller held up well at last year’s championships and then went into the ruck to cause headaches for opposition sides, replacing Luke Jackson once he had basketball commitments. He reads the ball well in the air and can set up attacking plays, as well as take crucial one-on-one marks. He is a player who can drift forward and act as a leading target inside the forward 50. Wherever he plays over the next month, expect him to play a role and really nullify an opposition tall.

Luke Jackson
East Fremantle | Ruck
29/09/2001 | 198cm | 94kg

A highly talked up ruck prospect, Jackson and his counterpart this weekend, Nick Bryan are subscribed by many as the top two ruck prospects in the draft crop. Jackson is an athletic tall who has represented Australia at basketball, but has now chosen football and looms as a key in the West Australian side. He is a high-volume ruck who can win possessions around the ground, drift forward and have an impact, or drop back and take a crucial mark. His game against South Australia last year at the championships – 25 disposals, seven marks and a goal – was as impressive as any performance during the carnival.

Trent Rivers
East Fremantle | Inside Midfielder/Defender
30/07/2001 | 188cm | 85kg

Captain of East Fremantle, Rivers is potentially the leading draft candidate for Western Australia this year along with Jeremy Sharp and Luke Jackson. Rivers is an inside midfielder who can play off half-back, attacking the ball fiercely and handing it off to his running teammates, while also creating plays off half-back. He is a consistent performer and has shown that this season in 2019, constantly finding the ball and laying plenty of tackles. A leader on the inside or outside, Rivers is a player Western Australia can rely upon to get the job done.

Deven Robertson
Perth | Inside Midfielder
30/06/2001 | 182cm | 80kg

Named captain of the West Australian side, Robertson is a crucial member of the inside midfield, and has been a natural-born leader throughout the journey. He attacks the contest with vigour and does not take a backwards step. One of a number of West Australians who were able to taste the atmosphere of the Under 18 Championships, averaging 14 disposals, seven tackles, two inside 50s and two marks. He is a huge ball winner at WAFL Colts level and will be a key midfielder in the state side.

Jeremy Sharp
East Fremantle | Outside Midfielder/Defender
13/08/2001 | 187cm | 79kg

Burst onto the scene at the championships, especially at Marvel Stadium, where Sharp looked a class above against the Allies, roaming from half-back to midfield alongside Jordan Clark. Sharp earned a spot in the 2018 Under-18 All Australian team for his performances, and has already been a member of the East Fremantle WAFL League side this season, holding his own against senior bodies. A good size at 187cm and 79kg, Sharp is a player that his teammates can rely upon with ball in hand.

X-factor:

Liam Henry
Claremont | Outside Midfielder
28/08/2001 | 179cm | 62kg

The exciting outside midfielder has huge upside and is a player who could have a pretty handy highlights package at the championships. A member of the Fremantle Next Generation Academy, Henry is very light at just 62kg and 179cm, but is someone who is versatile, damaging and provides as much defensive pressure as offensive nous in the forward half. Henry has had a ripping start to the season, averaging 22 disposals, six marks and five tackles in the WAFL Colts competition already this year.

Jarvis Pina
Peel Thunder | Small Defender
30/10/2000 | 176cm | 71kg

Another club captain who has made the state side, Pina is a clever defender who uses the ball well out of the back half, but can also be tasked with defensive roles to nullify dangerous opposing forwards. An overager, Pina missed out last year on being drafted, but his improvement in 2019 – averaging 22 disposals, five marks and seven tackles – including a 32-disposal game against West Perth in the opening round – has him on recruiters minds, so much so he was invited for an AFL Mid-Season Draft medical last month.

Jaxon Prior
West Perth | General Defender
04/06/2001 | 188cm | 79kg

Prior is likely to be one of the more damaging prospects for Western Australia, and one who can set up plays coming out of defence. At 188cm and 79kg, Prior is a readymade defender who is able to not only intercept the ball, but has superb vision, skills and decision making. While other defenders are able to lock down, Prior is able to be creative in defence to hurt opposition zones.

Up and comers:

Denver Grainger-Barras
Swan Districts | Key Defender
17/04/2002 | 192cm | 77kg

Grainger-Barras is one who will sure up the Black Swans’ defence, bringing high level reading of the play and solid marking to the table. The Swans product is still quite slight at 77kg, and while he has shown his ability to play as a key defender, Grainger-Barras will likely provide lockdown roles on the back of his rounded defensive game and can get the ball moving forward.

Logan McDonald
Perth | Key Forward
4/04/2002 | 192cm | 84kg

The dynamic Perth forward grabbed attention with a stunning Under 16 national championships last year, including a six-goal haul against Vic Metro. Has not been selected to face them this weekend, but should get a crack with his mix of lead-up overhead marking and ground level work rate. Finds goals at will, which is a valuable commodity.

Nathan O’Driscoll
Perth | General Defender
17/05/2002 | 182cm | 75kg

One of five selected bottom-agers to have made the Under 16 All-Australian team last year, O’Driscoll is a defender who finds plenty of the ball. Has only played two games for Perth in the Colts this year, but averages more than 25 disposals over the last two seasons. Also has the ability to intercept and push up the ground.

Zane Trew
Swan Districts | Inside Midfielder
26/04/2002 | 184cm | 81kg

The solidly-built midfielder thrives in the contest and is a terrific ball winner. Averages 29 disposals for the Swan Districts at Colts level, including a season-high 40, and should add some grunt to the WA engine room. Is a good exponent of handballs out of traffic, and possesses rare vision which adds finesse to his aggression and tackling pressure.

Brandon Walker
East Fremantle | General Defender
17/10/2002 | 182cm | 69kg

The 2020 Fremantle NGA prospect is an exciting half-back with fantastic skills by foot and apt decision making. Marks well for his size but stands out most with his ability to rebound effectively and do so at pace – so expect him to catch the eye if he gets a chance.

Joel Western
Claremont | Small Forward
12/10/2002 | 171cm | 69kg

The zippy Claremont small forward is coming into some form, having picked up a season-high 27 disposals in his latest Colts outing. Is another tied to the Fremantle NGA, and should provide some spark inside 50 for the Black Swans. Also possesses good goal sense, and is a menace to defenders.

AFL U18s Fixtures: (All WST)

vs Vic Metro @ Lathlain Park, Saturday June 8, 10am
vs South Australia @ Optus Stadium, Saturday June 15, 11am
vs Allies @ Alberton Oval, Saturday June 22, 9.15am
vs Vic Country @ Marvel Stadium, Wednesday July 3, 12.10pm

Summary:

The current crop of top-agers took out their Under-16 carnival two years ago, so should give it a good crack once again. It is always hard to get an early gauge on how the West Australians will fare, but we should get a better read of their talents in their upcoming meeting with the highly-fancied Vic Metro side. The likes of Luke Jackson in the ruck and Jeremy Sharp on the outside are some of the leading prospects in their positions, with Trent Rivers and Deven Robertson set to provide real grunt in the midfield. A strong defence will also be a feature, with dynamic tall prospects, good intercepters, and effective rebounders all at their disposal. Watch for some of their better bottom-agers to also make an impact across the carnival, with a couple tied to the Fremantle Next Generation Academy.

Western Australia announces 40-player squad for National Under 18 Championships

EAST Fremantle has dominated the National Under 18 Championships list for Western Australia, with nine players included in the main squad, and a further two train-one players making it 11 from a 40-player squad. The next highest representation comes from Swan Districts with six main squad players and one train-on player, one more than Claremont and West Perth. Perth has five players, while Subiaco has three and Peel Thunder two.

The Western Australia side includes nine bottom-agers in the team, as well as seven over-agers. Among the top players to keep an eye on this season, East Fremantle has a couple of potential top 10 selections in ruckman, Luke Jackson and running winger, Jeremy Sharp, while Jack Buller (Claremont), Deven Robertson (Perth), and Riley Garcia and Jake Pasini (Swan Districts) are others to watch. With a consistent team across the board, expect Western Australia to be very competitive at the championships as they have been the last few years.

Claremont [6]: Cameron Anderson, Jack Buller, Liam Henry, Callum Jamieson+, Ronan O’Connor, Joel Western*
East Fremantle [9+2]: Owen Dann* (TO), John Garlett+ (TO), Jai Jackson, Luke Jackson, Reuben McGuire, Max Murphy+, Trent Rivers, Trey Ruscoe, Jeremy Sharp, Brandon Walker*, Chad Warner
East Perth [0]: Nil.
Peel Thunder [2]: Jarvis Pina+, Tyrone Thorne
Perth [5]: Regan Clarke, Logan McDonald*, Nathan O’Driscoll*, Deven Robertson, Elijah Taylor
Swan Districts [6+1]: Jermari Daly (TO), Riley Garcia, Denver Grainger-Barras*, Nathan Ireland+, Jake Pasini, Ty Sears*, Zane Trew*
Subiaco [2+1]: Mitchell Georgiades (TO), Tristan Hobley+, Nicholas Martin
West Perth [4+2]: Heath Chapman (TO), Ryan Hudson, Ben Johnson, Michael Mallard* (TO), Zak Patterson+, Jaxon Prior.

* Bottom-age (2002 birth)
+ Over-age (2000 birth)
TO = Train-on, can be elevated to main squad over the championships

Western Australia’s National Under 18 Championships fixture:

vs. Vic Metro at Lathlain Park, June 8.
vs. South Australia at Optus Stadium, June 15.
vs. Allies at Alberton Oval, June 22.
vs. Vic Country at Marvel Stadium, July 3.

Scouting notes: WAFL Colts Round 3 – East Perth vs Claremont

IN Round 3 of the West Australian Football League (WAFL) Colts competition, Claremont defeated East Perth by 28 points at Leederville Oval.

Below are the best players from the game.

 

EAST PERTH 6.5 (41) defeated by CLAREMONT 10.8 (68)

 

East Perth:

#3 Harley Sparks
The Deanmill product was arguably the Royals’ best midfielder with a team-high 28 possessions, five tackles, three marks and a goal. Sparks often imposed himself in congestion to win the ball for his team and then dish it to the outside runners.

#9 Sebit Kuek
Last year’s Past Player and Officials Encouragement Award winner was excellent in the forward half for East Perth. He finished with 12 possessions, six hit-outs, four marks, four inside 50s, three tackles and a goal. His leading patterns combined with his strong overhead marking ability make him a damaging forward prospect.

#14 Kane Hughes
The East Perth wingman toiled hard all day for the Royals with 26 possessions, seven marks, two tackles and two inside 50s. His link-up style of play makes him one of the better wingmen in this year’s WAFL Colts competition.

#39 Cody Rodgers
The East Perth key defender showcased why he is considered to be one of the best key defensive options in this year’s draft pool. His positioning in defence was excellent, his knowledge of when to roll off his opponent to intercept the opposition was outstanding and his decision-making was sound. In the third quarter, he snuck forward and took a strong contested mark before booting a goal.

#40 Jed Montgomerie
The South Bunbury Junior was a standout in the ruck for East Perth in a competitive battle with Claremont’s Callum Jamieson. Montgomerie finished with 12 possessions, 22 hit-outs and five marks to be a presence for the Royals in the midfield.

 

Claremont:

#3 Leno Thomas
The Belmont junior was dynamic on the half-back line for Claremont with 19 possessions, four marks, two inside 50s and a goal. His electrifying speed, top agility and penetrating skills make him one of the more highly regarded prospects in this year’s WAFL Colts competition.

#8 Jack Buller
The Christ Church Grammar student was situated at centre half-back, playing on Jaxon East, and more than held his own in the contest. Buller finished with 20 possessions, 10 marks and three tackles, while holding East goalless.

#14 Jack Cooley
Stationed on the half-back line, Cooley offered a calm and composed figure for the Tigers. He finished with 25 possessions, six marks and two inside 50s, often providing excellent rebound from the defensive half. A highlight of his game was in the third quarter, when he grabbed the ball out of a pack and speared it to Jacob Blight, who kicked his second goal.

#15 Liam Henry
The Fremantle Next-Generation Academy prospect was arguably best afield, displaying traits that would endear him to recruiters. He accumulated 24 possessions, grabbed five marks and booted four goals in a sizzling display. His desire to run and carry and ability to use precise skills makes him one of the most damaging wingmen in this year’s draft pool.

#21 Louis Passera
The Scarborough junior continued his excellent start to the 2019 campaign with another superb performance, this time against the Royals. He collected 25 possessions, grabbed five marks, laid two tackles and recorded two inside 50s in a powerful display.

#22 Jye Clark
The younger brother of Geelong’s rising star Jordan, Jye Clark was prolific in the midfield for the Tigers. He finished with a game-high 29 possessions, five marks and four inside 50s in a near best-afield performance. His decision-making and skill execution are elite for someone his age.

#25 Callum Jamieson
The North Beach Junior was outstanding in the ruck for the Tigers. In a highly competitive battle with East Perth’s Jed Montgomerie, Jamieson accumulated 15 possessions, won a game-high 23 hitouts, took six marks, laid six tackles and recorded five inside 50s to be one of the best players for Claremont.

Scouting notes: WAFL Colts Round 1 – Claremont vs. East Fremantle

IN what was a cracking first game of the Simply Energy WAFL Colts Competition of 2019, East Fremantle defeated Claremont by two points at Claremont Oval. The final quarter proved to be a see-sawing contest between both teams, but ultimately the Sharks prevailed by that narrow margin of two points.

Below were the best players from each team.

CLAREMONT

#4 Marc Boyatzis
Stationed in the back pocket Boyatzis held his own, especially when East Fremantle started to dominate stages of the game. He finished the game with 12 possessions, three marks, two tackles and two inside 50s to arguably be the Tigers’ best defender. His intercept ability combined with his smart decision-making makes him a damaging rebounder, and his excellent lock-down mindset marks him as a tough opponent.

#5 Ronin O’Connor
The Marist junior was a bull in the midfield for the Tigers, often throwing himself into stoppages to win the ball for his team. He collected 20 possessions and laid an equal game-high nine tackles as he tried to give Claremont the ascendancy around the stoppages.

#8 Jack Buller
Playing centre half-forward, Buller always presents well for his midfielders to kick it to him. His leading patterns, strong hands, decision-making and skill execution were all on display for recruiters to see. The Cottesloe junior collected 12 possessions, grabbed four marks, laid three tackles and booted a goal in a solid first hit-out.

#11 Thomas Baldwin
The 2018 WA Under 18s representative showcased why Claremont’s coaching staff rate him highly. Playing as a small forward, Baldwin booted two goals from 19 possessions, as well as laying six tackles and taking three marks. His energy and class around the forward half stoppages were pivotal in keeping the Tigers in the contest.

#12 Joel Western
The Subiaco junior was electrifying on the half-forward flank for the Tigers, finishing the game with 19 possessions, four tackles, two inside 50s and a goal. Available to Fremantle as an Next Generation Academy (NGA) prospect in 2020, Western used his speed, evasiveness and skills to carve his way through East Fremantle’s defensive zones. He is already shaping up as a high draft prospect for next year.

#15 Liam Henry
The Derby product demonstrated why he is so highly touted in this year’s draft pool, especially by Fremantle who can select him under their Next-Generation Academy. Henry displayed his offensive flair and defensive soundness in a very well-rounded performance. He gathered 16 possessions, laid eight tackles, grabbed seven marks, recorded three inside 50s and kicked a magnificent goal in the second quarter, when he roved a pack inside 50 and snapped it through.

#22 Jye Clark
The younger brother of Geelong’s rising star Jordan, Jye Clark displayed similar traits to his brother – he was highly skilful, made sound decisions with ball in hand, and was always taking on the game. He collected 19 possessions, laid four tackles and recorded two inside 50s as he rotated between the half-back line and the wing.

EAST FREMANTLE

#2 Michael Wright
The Chapman Valley junior was sensational for the Sharks and was a key player in their victory. He gathered 23 possessions, laid an equal game-high nine tackles, took five marks, and recorded four inside 50s to be one of the best players for East Fremantle. His fierce attack on both the ball and man was superb.

#10 Trent Rivers
The East Fremantle captain led from the front for the Sharks. He amassed a game-high 26 possessions, took five marks, laid five tackles and recorded three inside 50s, playing between half-back and the midfield. He used his big frame to win crucial possessions, and his elite decision-making, vision and skill execution helped his team get the ball forward. He is already cementing himself as one of WA’s best draft prospects for 2019.

#16 Chad Warner
The Willetton junior was prolific in the midfield for East Fremantle with 24 possessions, seven tackles, three marks, three inside 50s and a goal. Warner plays in a similar way to Adelaide star Brad Crouch, as a player who is tough, skilful and prolific. His desire to win the contested ball before dishing it to the outside runners was pivotal for the Sharks’ victory.

#18 Chris Walker
The Fremantle NGA prospect convincingly proved why he is one of the best half-back flankers in this year’s Simply Energy WAFL Colts Competition. Against the Tigers, Walker held his opponents to minimal impact, while he provided damage on the offence. His desire to take the game on with his skill and speed was fantastic to see.

#20 Brandon Walker
The 2018 WA U16s All-Australian was excellent for the Sharks, showing why he is so highly rated for the 2020 AFL Draft. He used his crisp disposal and electrifying speed from the half-back line to torch the Tigers. He finished with 11 possessions, five marks and three tackles.

#23 Luke Jackson
The former Australian Junior National basketballer put together a performance that indicated why many draft experts see him as a potential first round draft pick. He gathered 11 possessions, won a game-high 36 hit-outs and laid three tackles to be the most imposing ruckman on the ground.

#24 Trey Ruscoe
The Booragoon junior was arguably the most important player for the Sharks, especially in the last quarter when he booted two goals to give the Sharks the lead. In the 19th minute of the final quarter he managed to tap the ball to himself, burst away from his direct opponent and then drill the goal that reduced the margin to just four points. Two minutes later, he did an excellent lead pattern and found himself in space to take a pivotal mark inside 50. He then kicked the goal to give the Sharks to lead. His final statistics were 20 possessions, six inside 50s, five marks, four tackles and two goals.

#25 Jai Jackson
The Geraldton product was his combative self in the midfield. He gathered 17 possessions, laid seven tackles, recorded four inside 50s and took two marks to be one of the Sharks’ better midfielders. His ability to win the contested ball within congestion and feed it out to his outside runners was elite.

West Australian draft prospects set to light up Colts competition

IN 2018, twelve West Australians were selected in the AFL National and Rookie Drafts, with five players taken across the first two rounds. Peter Sumich, Michael Ablett, Glen Jakovich, Ash McGrath, Craig Otto, and Mark Seaby, in different capacities respectively, played significant roles in player development across 2018 and are set to have an even greater impact in 2019.

These are the players in the Simply Energy WAFL Colts competition to keep an eye on for the 2019 AFL Draft.

JACK BULLER
(CLAREMONT/COTTESLOE JFC)

Despite being slightly undersized as a ruckman (196cm), Buller is competitive and aggressive in ruck contests and is exceptional at ground level. In 2018, he was a part of the WA U18s State Academy as a bottom-ager and showed plenty of promise averaging 14 possessions, eight hit-outs, four marks and three tackles with his best performance coming against Vic Country (17 possessions, 18 hit-outs, eight tackles and five marks). He also showed promise playing as a key forward for Claremont’s Colts team with eight goals from five games and averages of 10 possessions, four hit-outs, three marks, three tackles and two inside 50s.

LUKE JACKSON
(EAST FREMANTLE/BULLCREEK-LEEMING JFC)

The former Australian junior basketballer is one of the most exciting prospects for next year’s draft, even being mentioned as a possible top five selection. In just four games for East Fremantle’s Colts team, he kicked four goals and averaged 12 possessions, 20 hit-outs, four tackles and three inside 50s with dominant outings against Subiaco (14 possessions, 11 hit-outs, and two goals) and South Fremantle (17 possessions, 25 hit-outs and a goal). He was also exceptional for the WA U18s State Academy with two exceptional performances against South Australia (25 possessions, seven marks, and a goal and Vic Metro (seven possessions and 25 hit-outs). His athleticism, skills, and ruck craft are elite for someone his age.

TRENT RIVERS
(EAST FREMANTLE/BULLCREEK-LEEMING JFC)

A big-bodied midfielder who thrives at the stoppages, Rivers is an accumulator who gets the ball going forward for his team. He finished equal-second in East Fremantle Colts’ Best and Fairest after averaging 19 possessions, six marks, and two tackles across 15 games. He also polled 10 votes in the Jack Clarke Medal with sensational performances against Perth (20 possessions and six marks), and Claremont (21 possessions and seven marks). He also produced dominant outings in the Elimination Final against South Fremantle (19 possessions and four marks) and in the Semi-Final against Peel (19 possessions and two goals) – highlighting his big-game performing ability.

JEREMY SHARP
(EAST FREMANTLE/ATTADALE JFC)

The 2018 U18s All-Australian is a silky-skilled and smooth-moving midfielder much like former St Kilda and North Melbourne champion Nick Dal Santo. In four games for Western Australia, he averaged 18 possessions, four marks, two inside 50s and two rebounding 50s, with his best performance coming against Vic Metro (26 possessions, four marks, three inside 50s and a goal). In seven games for East Fremantle, he was named in the best on three occasions including a magnificent performance in the Elimination Final against South Fremantle (24 possessions, nine marks and eight inside 50s). At his best, Sharp is a line-breaker who uses his speed, skills and smarts to carve up the opposition. Is shaping up to be a first round selection in 2019 and potentially a top 10 pick.

RHAI-ARN COX
(EAST PERTH/MT HAWTHORN JFC)

Cox made a name for himself in 2017’s AFL U16 Championships when he booted a goal after the siren to win the game against Vic Metro. The 2017 WA U16s Vice-Captain is a crafty small forward with explosive athleticism, dazzling skills, an incredible toughness and a great understanding of the play. In 11 games for East Perth in 2018 he booted 15 goals (winning his Club’s Leading Goalkicker Award) and averaged 13 possessions, four marks and two tackles with some sizzling performances against Claremont (17 possessions and three goals), East Fremantle (10 possessions and three goals), Swan Districts (17 possessions and two goals) and West Perth (13 possessions and two goals). He also starred in the AFL U17s Futures game with 12 possessions and three goals for Team Riewoldt.

DEVEN ROBERTSON
(PERTH/MANNING JFC)

The 2017 WA U16s Captain and MVP winner is a bullocking inside midfielder who thrives on the contested side of the game. In four games for WA’s U18s he averaged 14 possessions, seven tackles, two marks and two inside 50s with his best performances coming against the Allies (17 possessions, four tackles, and three inside 50s) and Vic Country (17 possessions and nine tackles). In just five games for Perth’s Colts team, Robertson averaged 28 possessions, seven tackles and four inside 50s, with best afield performances against East Fremantle (33 possessions, six marks, five tackles and five inside 50s) and Peel Thunder (34 possessions, five tackles and five inside 50s), and a near best-afield performance against Subiaco (36 possessions and a goal). The nephew of former West Coast champion Darren Glass has a very bright future.

ELIJAH TAYLOR
(PERTH/THORNLIE JFC)

The Thornlie junior is an exciting medium half-forward who has plenty of tricks to make opposing defenders extremely nervous. In 17 games for the Perth Demons’ Colts, Taylor averaged 13 possessions, three inside 50s, two marks and kicked nine goals with his best games coming against East Fremantle (14 possessions and a goal, East Perth (16 possessions and two goals) and Swan Districts (16 possessions, seven marks, three inside 50s and a goal). At his best, Taylor is a very hard match-up due to his size, explosive athleticism, damaging skills and elite decision-making – factors that will help him with his development into senior football. He is a raw prospect who has plenty of growth and an x-factor.

MITCHELL GEORGIADES
(SUBIACO/WEMBLEY DOWNS JFC)

The son of former Subiaco and Western Bulldogs sharpshooter John Georgiades, Mitchell is one of the most exciting forwards in WA’s State-Based AFL Academy. Blessed with a great set of hands, excellent skills and an elite reading of the play, Georgiades is a young forward with tremendous upside. In just six games for Subiaco’s Colts’ team, he averaged 13 possessions, six marks, two inside 50s, two tackles and booted eight goals with his best performance coming against South Fremantle (12 possessions, seven marks, three tackles, two inside 50s and two goals). He was also instrumental for Western Australia’s U18s team, where he averaged 10 possessions, four marks, two tackles and kicked three goals across four games, with his most notable against the Allies (13 possessions and two goals). He is already shaping up to be one of the most explosive forward options in next year’s draft pool.

RILEY GARCIA
(SWAN DISTRICTS/CAVERSHAM JFC)

The 2017 WA U16s Leadership group midfielder is a small midfield dynamo who has excellent speed, agility, skills and reading of the play. He made his WAFL Colts debut as a 15-year-old in 2016 and since then has gone on to become one of the premier midfielders for the 2019 AFL Draft. In 24 games for Swan Districts’ Colts team, Garcia has kicked 14 goals and averaged 20 possessions, three tackles and three marks. In 2018 he finished ninth in the Jack Clarke Medal and sixth in Swan Districts’ Colts’ Best and Fairest after some exceptional performances including best afield performance against Perth (32 possessions and a goal) and Claremont (31 possessions). However his performances in the 2018 finals series should have recruiters monitoring him closely after he averaged 22 possessions, three marks, two tackles and kicked four goals across four games.

JAKE PASINI
(SWAN DISTRICTS/CAVERSHAM JFC)

A no-nonsense defender, Pasini has an excellent aerial ability and a powerful kick on him, making him an attractive defensive prospect. In 16 games for Swan Districts’ Colts team, Pasini averaged 11 possessions, three marks and three tackles while more often than not, he held the opposition’s key forward to minimal impact. This was especially evident in the Semi-Final against Subiaco where he held the 2018 WAFL Colts Leading Goalkicker Jack Mayo goalless while he recorded nine possessions and took five marks. He was also excellent for Western Australia with excellent defensive efforts on Sam Flanders (Vic Country) and Matthew Walker (Allies) in his two games. The club that picks up Pasini will have a defender who goes about his business quietly and with no fuss.

OTHERS TO KEEP AN EYE ON:
Liam Henry (Claremont/Cottesloe JFC)
Trey Ruscoe (East Fremantle/Booragoon JFC)
Jack Sears (Peel Thunder/South Mandurah)
Tristan Hobley (Subiaco/Kingsway JFC)
Jaxon Prior (West Perth/Sorrento-Duncraig JFC)

TESTING DAY STANDOUTS:

Jonathon Garlett was one of the best performers at the inaugural WA talent testing and education day, held at Aquinas College. The Geraltdon Towns product was electric in the 20m sprint (2.84 seconds) and agility test (8.17 seconds), while also showcasing the explosiveness that helped him to a national high jump medal – posting 91cm in the running vertical jump and 85cm in the standing. Swan Districts duo Ben Taylor and Kade Wallrodt also caught the eye, with Taylor showing a good mix of speed and enduarance with a 2.98-second 20 metre sprint and 21.1 yoyo test score. Wallrodt also had a sub-three second 20 metre sprint time, as well as a solid agilty score of 8.40 seconds. Of the WA-based AFL Academy members, Perth’s Deven Robertson proved his hard work in the off-season would pay off, with good scores across the board and particular improvement in the 2km time trial. Fremantle Next Generation Academy prospects Liam Henry and Brandon Walker were also impressive, as was 2018 Under 16 standout Logan McDonald – putting in early claims as ones to watch for the 2020 draft.   

Western Australia’s future stars named in state-based AFL Academy

WESTERN Australia looks set to have an excellent pool of possible draftees in 2019 and 2020, after the 28-man Western Australia AFL Academy squad was announced. Swan Districts have the most representatives with six, while East Fremantle and Perth have five apiece. The side will be coached by former West Coast spearhead Peter Sumich, and their first camp will be from December 10 – December 15. Below are the five notable players from Western Australia for the 2019 AFL Draft.

JACK BULLER – CLAREMONT

A competitive and aggressive ruckman who is excellent at ground level, Buller was WA’s main ruckman in 2018 and he handled the responsibility with aplomb. Despite only being 196cm, Buller competed hard in the ruck contests and once the ball hit the ground, he transformed into a big-bodied midfielder. In four games for WA, he averaged 14 possessions eight hitouts, four marks, and three tackles, while in five games for Claremont, he booted eight goals and averaged 10 possessions, four hit-outs, three marks and two tackles.

RHAI-ARN COX – EAST PERTH

A dynamic small forward with plenty of tricks, Cox made a name for himself with a goal after the siren to secure victory for WA over Vic Country in last year’s AFL National Under 16 Championships. He had a decent year with East Perth in 2018, averaging 13 possessions, four marks, three tackles and booted 15 goals from 11 games.

LUKE JACKSON – EAST FREMANTLE

The former Australian junior basketball sensation is an athletic ruckman with excellent follow-up work and has already drawn comparisons to West Coast star Nic Naitanui. In two games for WA, Jackson averaged 16 possessions, 13 hit-outs, four marks, four inside 50s, three clearances and three rebounding 50s. In four games for East Fremantle, he averaged 12 possessions, 20 hit-outs and four tackles.

DEVEN ROBERTSON – PERTH

The nephew of former West Coast captain Darren Glass, Robertson has made a name for himself as a bullocking inside midfielder. In just five games for Perth’s Colts team, the 2017 WA U16s MVP winner averaged 28 possessions, seven tackles and three marks to finish sixth in the Best & Fairest. He was also excellent for WA, averaging 14 possessions and seven tackles.

JEREMY SHARP – EAST FREMANTLE

The 2018 AFL Under 18s All-Australian is a composed and skilled outside midfielder, not too dissimilar to former St Kilda and North Melbourne champion Nick Dal Santo. For Western Australia, he averaged 18 possessions, four marks, two inside 50s and two rebounding 50s across four games, while in seven games for East Fremantle’s Colts team, he averaged 19 possessions and five marks.

WA’S STATE-BASED AFL ACADEMY SQUAD:

Jack Buller – Claremont/Christ Church Grammar School/Cottesloe JFC
Anthony Davis – Claremont/Hale School/Borden FC
Liam Henry – Claremont/Christ Church Grammar School/Cottesloe JFC
Joel Western – Claremont/Western Tigers/Subiaco JFC
Luke Jackson – East Fremantle/Bullcreek-Leeming JFC
Trent Rivers – East Fremantle/Bullcreek-Leeming JFC
Trey Ruscoe – East Fremantle/Aquinas College/Booragoon JFC
Jeremy Sharp – East Fremantle/Aquinas College/Attadale JFC
Brandon Walker – East Fremantle/Kardinya Kats JFC
Rhai-Arn Cox – East Perth/Mt Hawthorn JFC
Jack Sears – Peel Thunder/South Mandurah FC
Tyrone Thorne – Peel Thunder/Rockingham JFC
Deven Robertson – Perth/Aquinas College/Manning JFC
Elijah Taylor – Perth/Thornlie JFC
Bailey Smith – Perth/Thornlie JFC
Mitchell Georgiades- Subiaco/Hale School/Wembley Downs JFC
Nicholas Martin – Subiaco/Trinity College/Noranda JFC
Jermal Daly – Swan Districts/South Hedland
Riley Garcia – Swan Districts/Caversham JFC
Denver Grainger-Barras – Swan Districts/Kalamunda JFC
Jake Pasini – Swan Districts/Caversham JFC
Ty Sears – Swan Districts/South Bunbury FC
Zane Trew – Swan Districts/Hills Rangers FC
Ryan Hudson – West Perth/Scotch College/Kalannie FC
Michael Mallard – West Perth/Wanneroo JFC
Jaxon Prior – West Perth/Sorrento-Duncraig JFC
Logan McDonald – Perth/Aquinas College
Nathan O’Driscoll – Perth/Northam Saints