Tag: lloyd perris

Rogers looks towards Gulden source of inspiration

THE Sydney Swans Academy has been a raging success for the New South Wales-based club, producing the likes of Isaac Heeney, Callum Mills, and most recently Errol Gulden and Braeden Campbell. It means the next generation of Swans stars never have to look far for inspiration, with the visual of their elders’ journeys serving as a clear pathway to the top.

For current Academy member Felix Rogers, that pathway has taken on a varied route but still holds some influence from closer to home. The small midfielder-forward is crafty with ball in hand and has little trouble finding it, much like one of the Swans’ most recent Academy graduates.

“I’d say someone who I’ve really moulded my game on pretty recently is Errol Gulden,” Rogers said. “He was only a year ahead of me in the academy. I played and trained with him and was always underneath him in that role as the link forward or midfielder. “My biggest strengths would be my kicking and that kicking leading to goals… this year I played on-ball and drifted forward again, I think another strength which showed was my ability to find the footy pretty well.

“(Tackling) is a part of my game I can improve. “Definitely because I’m shorter than the average AFL player, that’s always looked upon as a bit of a weakness but I guess it’s not the size of the dog in the fight.”

Born in London, Rogers moved to Australia with his family at age four, only picking up the native football code when he was about 10. After missing the cut in his first crack at entering the Swans Academy, the 18-year-old has been there ever since and yielded some terrific honours en route to Allies squad selection this season.

“I only really started playing AFL when I was about 10 and really, really got into it,” Rogers said. “I was playing (European) football up until then, obviously coming from England. “Outside of the Swans Academy, I’ve gone through my local club which is Willoughby Wildcats, then into (AFL Sydney) Premier League with the North Shore Bombers.

“(NSW-ACT) Rams was great fun for Under 16s. We were up on the Gold Coast and had a pretty good team. I played pretty decent in that carnival but ended up doing my shoulder at the end of it, in the last game against Tasmania. Ever since then I’ve had to get that right and I was lucky enough to have it ready and okay this year. “That lead me into a couple of good NAB League games for the Swans and lead into Allies selection which was my goal all year round. I was super ecstatic to make the squad. It’s just unfortunate that’s looking more and more unlikely to go ahead.”

While currently in lockdown and pondering the “what ifs” of season 2021, Rogers still managed to produce some blistering form when allowed on the park. He got a taste for senior football with four games in Sydney’s Premier Division and turned out in a VFL scratch match, while also averaging 28.3 disposals, 6.7 inside 50s and booting four goals across three NAB League outings.

“I think I’ve probably had one of my better years to date,” he said. “For me, this year’s kind of been a bit of a ‘wonder if?’. “Had the Swans had five more games where I kept up the numbers I had, could I be in a lot better position to try and get myself drafted? “Had the Swans not finished up so early and COVID not interrupted, would I have gotten games for the Allies?

“This was my first year of senior footy. It was good fun, it’s a good group and it’s really interesting to play with bigger bodies. “It’s not as fleet-footed as NAB League games and what-not but it’s an interesting dynamic.”

Having been immersed in the Sydney pathway program for many years now, Rogers is an avid Swans supporter and says landing at his home club would be his “first choice”, but is happy to land just about anywhere at the end of this “crazy” year.

The budding draft prospect is also completing his Year 12 studies online with sights studying business and law alongside football next year. As for his escapes from “repetitive” lockdown living, Rogers has gotten into golf. A stint on the Gold Coast also helped him focus on football and get out of the current bubble.

“I’m big time into my golf, that’s my hobby outside of AFL,” he said. “It’s a bit hard with all the time it takes up but I find that a good release from footy and from school. “Day to day is very repetitive. I’ve still got online classes so I try and do a bit of exercise in and around them – go to the little home gym we have here and go for a kick or go for a run. It’s hard to try and keep that routine but it’s definitely valuable, especially with the small chance of Allies games still going ahead.

“I was in the Gold Coast about a month ago. “I lived up there and was training with the Suns Academy for a bit and played a VFL game. “That was a good experience and that was a bit of an escape from COVID lockdown which was lovely and meant I could focus on my footy a bit more as well.”

With such a series of experiences comes some important mentors too, from those who have nurtured Rogers through the Swans Academy, to others who have come in and guided him more recently.

Jared Crouch, Chris Smith, and Nick Davis at the Academy have been phenomenal,” he said. “They help us in every facet of the game. I think another key mentor for me only really came this year and that was Lloyd Perris. He used to be in the academy system and played with Isaac Heeney. He’s now our North Shore Bombers coach, he knows all about the system and has been very good with me and trying to help forge a path.”

While overlooked for the initial National Combine intake, Rogers caught the eye this year and if there is anything his journey through the Swans’ pathway has shown, it’s that he can overcome early obstacles to produce great things.

NSW/ACT weekly wrap: Under 16s squad selected; Top-agers impress at Ikon

IN the past week, AFL NSW/ACT announced its Under 16s side for the National AFL Under 16 Championships, while a number of top-age prospects impressed against Victoria in two trial games.

Under 16s squad selection:

NSW/ACT’s side for the National Under 16 Championships features 25 players – 14 from the Sydney Swans Academy and 11 from the GWS GIANTS Academy, with the squad to be reduced to 23 prior to the opening game. The Rams take on Northern Territory on June 11 in Blacktown from 2.30pm, with the team coming together for a weekend training camp running from tomorrow (June 1) through to Sunday (June 3).

AFL NSW/ACT Under 16s Head Coach, Lloyd Perris told the NSW/ACT website he believes the squad has what it takes to combat the other states and territories.

“Heading into the camp, I’m really confident with the Rams squad we’ve selected,” says Perris. “We have plenty of skilful smalls combined with a few really exciting tall prospects.”

Perris praised the Sydney Swans and GIANTS Academies for their work over the 2018 AFL Academy Series.

“The GIANTS and Swans Academies do a brilliant job in preparing their players, which was on show during the three game series,” he said. “There was a great spread of talent across the board, which is exactly what we want in New South Wales, but unfortunately that meant some quality footballers missed out on selection. “I want the Rams to be a super competitive team that brings intensity into training and games. “If the players combine this with a growth mindset and the want to learn and improve, then that’s all I can ask for as a coach.”

Full squad:

NSW/ACT players perform for Allies

A number of players from the Sydney Swans and GWS GIANTS Academies had good hit-outs for the Allies trial games against Vic Country and Vic Metro on Sunday at Ikon Park. The first Allies side ran over the top of Country in the final term, while the second side fell short of Metro. Some of the top performers from the two games were;

Thomas Green (30 disposals, four marks, 10 clearances, nine tackles and six inside 50s)
Guy Richardson (25 disposals, five marks, one clearance, one tackle, three rebounds)
Kyle McKellar (24 disposals, five marks, two clearances, two inside 50s, two rebounds)
Liam Delahunty (16 disposals, six marks, one tackle, one inside 50, one goal)
Kieren Briggs (16 disposals, four marks, 14 hitouts, four tackles, four clearances, four behinds)
Jeromy Lucas (18 disposals, two marks, 10 tackles, three clearances, three goals)
Jacob Koschitzke (16 disposals, seven marks, two tackles, two inside 50s, two rebounds, one goal)
Josh Rayner (14 disposals, five marks, two tackles, two inside 50s, two rebounds)
Josh Stern (13 disposals, two marks, five tackles, two inside 50s, two rebounds, one goal)
James Peatling (11 disposals, two marks, three tackles, two clearances, three inside 50s)
Joey Reinhard (11 disposals, one mark, one tackle, two inside 50s, two rebounds)

For more information, check out the match report or the scouting notes from the Allies vs. Vic Country and Allies vs. Vic Metro games.

Great weekend in NEAFL for the region:

All three New South Wales based clubs had a win in round eight of the NEAFL, with Sydney University remaining unbeaten, while the Swans and GIANTS got the points over reigning premiers Brisbane and Queensland side Redlands respectively. Canberra Demons had the bye.

Sydney University 18.11 (119) defeated NT Thunder 9.7 (61)

The top side always looked the better team in its big win over Northern Territory, booting 11 goals to four after half-time to storm away with a 58-point win and remain unbeaten in the NEAFL competition. Jacob Derickx was best on ground with five goals from 15 disposals, eight marks and eight tackles, while former Sydney and Essendon tagger Craig Bird had 26 disposals, four marks and 11 tackles in a big defensive effort. Others who impressed were Ryan Hebron and Jack Hiscox (both 22 disposals, two marks), while Sam Fong booted two goals from 24 disposals, four marks and seven tackles, and Tom Young finished with the two majors from 25 disposals, six marks and five tackles.

UWS GIANTS 18.16 (124) defeated Redlands 8.11 (59)

The UWS GIANTS easily got the job done against Redlands in an imposing performance, running away 65-point winners with a 15 goals to three opening three quarters to easily ice the game with a quarter to play. Isaac Cumming had a huge game with 33 disposals, 10 marks, five tackles and two goals, while Zachary Sproule was good with 11 marks from 34 disposals. Jeremy Finlayson did his hopes of a recall no harm with 25 disposals, seven marks, four tackles and two goals, while Nick Shipley notched up 26 disposals, three marks and 11 tackles.

Sydney Swans 10.10 (70) defeated Brisbane Lions 7.12 (54)

In a much tighter contest, Sydney managed to knock off reigning premiers Brisbane by 16 points. The Swans led at every break, but by only two points at half time, and the teams combined for eight behinds in the final term as Sydney held on to record an important four points. Nic Newman‘s outstanding form at NEAFL level continued with 29 disposals, five marks, seven tackles and two goals, while Robbie Fox was important with 33 disposals, two marks and eight tackles. Daniel Robinson had a team-high 36 touches to go with six marks and two tackles, while Darcy Cameron was once again prominent in the ruck with 31 hitouts to go with 13 disposals and seven marks.

2013 Draft Profile: Lloyd Perris

Lloyd Perris (St George)

Height: 179 cm
Weight: 74 kg
Position: Midfielder
Player comparison: Kieran Jack
Strengths: Endurance, leadership and footy smarts.
Weaknesses: Injury history, hurt factor with disposal

Not many eighteen year olds have the resume that St George’s Lloyd Perris does. Perris is an AIS/AFL Academy member, winner of the Cameron Ling and Ben Mitchell medals, an All Australian team member and NSW/ACT MVP. There is a reason why he is being touted as the steal of the draft, as the Sydney Swans can pick him up with their last draft pick as he is a Swans scholarship holder. He has all of the qualities you want from a midfielder and the Swans can take him at the end of the draft. That sounds like a steal to me.

Perris is an elite runner and it is the main strength to his game. He has a huge motor and it allows him to get from contest to contest around the ground. His work rate is immense and he runs both ways, a quality which is greatly desirable in the open, flowing modern game. Perris is a very smart footballer and this helps him on the field, allowing him to run to the right spots both offensively and defensively. He always seems to be where the ball is and that is because he runs to the right spot every time and has got to the contest early enough to set up and give himself time to pick the right option.

Perris is the inaugural winner of the Cameron Ling medal and won the Ben Mitchell medal this year for his performances in the AIS/AFL Academy. Almost more importantly, the medals were awarded based mainly on leadership qualities rather than skill. What you are getting with Perris is a very selfless and switched on player, who was awarded top votes in competitiveness, patience, loyalty, sacrifice, respect, hard work, professionalism, desire and determination categories. Perris is clearly a great leader and motivator, and his determination is demonstrated by his recovery and return this year from a knee reconstruction as a bottom-ager. Perris has come back from the devastating knee injury and had a fantastic season, winning All-Australian selection and the NSW/ACT MVP.

Despite his high work rate, Perris doesn’t appear to have a great turn of speed. He can accelerate quickly but often does just enough to break clear of his opponent and then disposes of the ball. He doesn’t need speed, using his incredible football brain to analyse what is ahead of him and get rid of the ball quickly before following up on his kick and getting to the next contest.

Perris has very good inside ability but his outside game is far less polished. He is one of the better stoppage players in the draft this year, despite not having the large frame of other bullocking inside mids. Although he is a good kick, Perris does not have the elite disposal or weapons that many of the likely top draft prospects do. Perris is a neat kick but not particularly penetrating or damaging. He is unlikely to be the type of player to pick the ball up and deliver a spearing 45 metre pass onto the chest of the forward, but is more likely to guide the ball to the space in front of the forward, directing him to the best spot. By hand Perris is very good, dishing off the ball to outside receivers, even when in heavy traffic.

Perris is likened to Kieran Jack but in reality he is a typical Sydney midfielder and will fit in seamlessly to the Swans on-ball brigade next year, should they decide to select him. He is a hard running, two way worker with neat footskills and is prepared to win his own ball. He has trained with the Sydney team at times this year and did part of their pre-season with them this year so he should know the structures and game plan.
Perris is not going to be the best midfielder straight off the bat, and is likely to need a couple of years in the AFL system before he starts to produce, much like Tom Mitchell. But whichever team picks him up can be assured that he will give his all to ensure he makes it as an AFL footballer and will do anything to improve himself as a footballer.