Tag: marc murphy

Draft Central All-Star Team: Oakleigh Chargers

OAKLEIGH Chargers have a wealth of current and recently retired players in their All-Star Team of the AFL Draft era. Over the past decade, a heap of new players have really come to the fore, with not many 1990s representatives, but have bolstered their draft numbers since the turn of the century.


The Chargers have plenty to like about their side, with a strong midfield, and lots of damaging smalls and medium types. Their key position line is a little short, with their most damaging players being sub-195cm. However they also have some great versatility across the field and would be really difficult to match up on most days.


The defence has an old-school feel to it, with just one current player in the back six. That player being Collingwood key position utility Darcy Moore, who holds down centre half-back with just 71 games – to start the year – to his name, the least of any player in the side. He joins Carlton 189-gamer and reliable full-back Bret Thornton there as holding down the key posts, whilst two-time best and fairest winner and one-time All-Australian Josh Gibson can operate as the third tall and loose man.

The talls will have some freedom given the three other players have the capability of locking down on their respective opponents. Nick Smith sits in a back pocket after 211 games and an All-Australian nod and premiership with the Swans. On the flanks, Hawthorn and Gold Coast’s Campbell Brown and Carlton’s Andrew Carrazzo round out the defensive line. The versatile David Mackay is also coming off the bench which could help with rotations in that back six.


The midfield is simply elite, and hard to squeeze just five midfielders around Todd Goldstein as the standout ruck. Goldstein is a best and fairest winner and All-Australian with almost 250 games to his name. He will ruck to Carlton captain Marc Murphy – who has two best and fairests and an All-Australian – and Jack Macrae – one All-Australian – onball.

The centre line is three-time All-Australian Dan Hannebery in the middle, flanked by Andrew Gaff and Luke Shuey on the wings. The West Coast duo have played 400 games between them, and also combined for three best and fairests, two All-Australians and four All-Australian 40-player squad nominations.

With versatility being the strength of the side, 300-gamer and Chargers’ club games record holder at AFL level, Luke Power is able to play off half-forward – his All-Australian came in a forward pocket – whilst the nearly all of the forward six could play through the middle. Throw in Heath Black, Jack Viney, Tom Phillips and Daniel Jackson off the bench, as well as Mackay, and the Chargers have a wealth of midfield options at their disposal.


Whilst not tall, the front six has plenty of X-factor and an ability to do some serious damage there. Adam Tomlinson is the major key position player, but could rotate with Moore in defence, or have Moore thrown forward for extra size. The only other key position tall is Ashley Hansen off the bench, but the lack of height is not an issue considering the smalls running around in there.

Although not all of the players are ‘smalls’ as such, with the almost-key position height of Jordan De Goey chosen at full-forward, flanked by equally damaging talents in Toby Greene and Jack Billings. All three have the capability of winning games off their own boot. The same could be said for Power at half-forward, alongside Robbie Gray on the other flank. Gray may well be the most accoladed player of the lot, with four All-Australians and three best and fairests, putting his claim in as one of the best Port Adelaide players of the modern era.


Whilst the 24 players that made the squad deserve it, there are a lot of unlucky players missing out. Many of whom were strong role players over the journey, such as Jamie MacMillan (157 games), Sam Gibson (135), Ryan Lester (126) and Sam Power (123). Also just missing out on the side were other 100-gamers in Robin Nahas, Stephen Gilham and Dom Tyson, whilst the likes of Luke McDonald, Jack Sinclair, Darcy Byrne-Jones, Toby McLean and Jake Kelly are among current players who could force their way into the side over the next few years.

Oakleigh Chargers Player of the AFL Era: Vote for yours via our Instagram

OAKLEIGH CHARGERS are up next in our Player of the AFL Era series which will be run through our Instagram channel starting at 12.30pm today. The Norwood Redlegs All-Star voting was completed yesterday with Tom Harley announced as the winner and captain of the Redlegs’ All-Star side.

Oakleigh has a great core of players across the ground, with some accolade-riddled CVs from 300-game premiership player Luke Power to the modern day talents of Robbie Gray, Todd Goldstein and Marc Murphy.

The voting will run over the next four days starting today, with the winner to be decided by Friday night (unless extra time and the full 24 hours is needed in the final vote). The next club involved in the voting process is Peel Thunder starting on Wednesday. All eligible players were selected thanks to the Draft Guru site.

Keeping Tabs: Standout players from Round 23

For some, it’s the last game of footy they’ll play until 2019. For others, they’ll be playing the most important games of footy they’ve ever faced. In our last Keeping Tabs, we look back on a few familiar faces, where they sit for the season, and pay our usual respects to this round’s top performers.

Tim Kelly

Though ineligible to win the NAB Rising Star Award, Kelly without a doubt was 2018’s best first year player. Averaging 23.1 disposals, four clearances, three tackles and three inside 50s across 22 games, Geelong’s newest recruit tallied up 23 goals, placing as the Cat’s fourth highest goal kicker for the season (one behind Patrick Dangerfield). In Round 23, Kelly maintained his class. His power showed out of stoppages, as he collected three clearances and an exciting goal around the body. He finished with two more goals (100 per cent efficiency) and nine score involvements for the afternoon, plus 23 possessions (seven contested) at a disposal efficiency of 74 per cent. Kelly was able to beat his stat sheet on the weekend, taking eight marks (two inside 50s), boasted 24 pressure acts and four inside 50s. Give him one more season, and Kelly could be named in the 40-man All-Australian squad. Though you could argue he was stiff not to get a nod this season, if the Cats claw their way to the end of September, a Norm Smith conversation might not be off the cards either.

Zac Bailey

Bailey injected real class into the Brisbane Lions’ line-up this year, Bailey put on another show for onlookers against the Eagles. Clean with ball in hand, Bailey finished with 20 possessions (six contested) and a list-high 85 per cent disposal efficiency. His first quarter started well, kicking a goal on the run from 30 metres out, and later adding his second in the third quarter (six score involvements). He was able to showcase his strong marking ability, with four marks on the weekend. Bailey topped off an already impressive performance with two tackles, three inside 50s, 364 metres gained, and earned three free kicks. The Lions know what they’re doing with their crop. With Cam Rayner, Hugh McCluggage, Eric Hipwood, Alex Witherden and Bailey, the future’s looking strong for Brisbane.

Aaron Naughton

Though having a few stints up forward this season, it seems Naughton’s continued reliability in the backline was again too much to pass up. Earning himself the final NAB Rising Star nomination for the year, the dependable defender played his role well in minimising Richmond’s forward onslaught. He collected 18 disposals (12 contested) at a 78 per cent disposal efficiency. Naughton took nine marks (five contested) and 12 intercept possessions with only one turnover. He sits atop the Bulldogs list for intercept possessions at 112, but only 54th in the competition. If the Bulldogs remained more consistent with Naughton’s role, perhaps he would have placed higher and received the Rising Star nomination earlier. Nevertheless, his impact is unmistakable, sustaining good football across 23 rounds.

Liam Ryan

Ryan’s game has much to be admired. He’s proven himself as a talented goal kicker (17 goals in 10 games), a slick mover with the ball, and generally just adds a lot of flavour to the plays he produces. Unsurprisingly, this game was no different. The 21-year-old kicked three goals for the game (six score involvements) and collected nine of his 12 possessions out of a contest. His disposal efficiency was a little poor at 58 per cent, but his goal sense and one-on-one work put him above, taking four marks (two contested) and laying four tackles. West Coast are going into the finals with a confident and talented forward line, with Ryan and Willie Rioli adding unfathomable amounts of finesse and agility. Their inclusion this season has made the Eagles a much more dynamic side than the one we saw in 2017.

James Worpel

Taking up the role of Hawthorn’s resident hothead in James Sicily’s absence, Worpel continued to play his footy with great intensity. His work through the midfield proved damaging, collecting 23 possessions (nine contested) at a solid 78 per cent disposal efficiency. He kicked an easy goal from a dropped mark off a Sydney kick-in, had seven score involvements and one goal assist. He worked well going forward with three clearances, four inside 50s and two marks in front of goal. He also had two tackles, 13 pressure acts, five intercept possessions, and two rebound 50s. His work rate was up for four quarters, positioning and using his body well in the contest. 

Jack Higgins

It seems Richmond’s wins at the MCG are getting slimmer with each round heading into September. Higgins expressed his frustrations early on, but found his head and maintained a strong presence in assisting Richmond’s win. The personable youngster collected 18 possessions (nine contested) at 61 per cent disposal efficiency, as well as seven score involvements and two goal assists. His clever tap-down to Jason Castagna inside 50 created an important goal in the third, making up part of his five one per centers for the game. Richmond envisioned a small-forward/midfield role in 2017 for this prospect and showed great interest in his game-average five tackles. This year, the Tigers were able to get what they wanted as Higgins topped his game with 28 pressure acts, and five tackles (three inside 50). With his speed, instincts, pressure and goal sense, Higgins should be well on his way to stardom.

Ben Paton

Paton gave St Kilda something to look at come selection next season with a stellar third-game performance. He gathered 16 disposals (seven contested) and peaked his kicking efficiency at 88.9 per cent with nine kicks. He earned himself a goal (five score involvements and one goal assist), took three marks, laid two tackles and had 19 pressure acts. In such a chaotic game of football, it’s impressive to see a young player hold their nerve and keep their efficiency at such an elevated level. 

Lochie O’Brien

This weekend O’Brien got himself to a lot of the footy even with Carlton’s inability to do much with it. Collecting 22 disposals (four contested) at 58 per cent disposal efficiency, the young Blue maintained a strong presence around the ground, finishing third behind Marc Murphy and Patrick Cripps in possessions. The No.10 pick finished with four marks, three clearances, six inside 50s and four rebound 50s. It probably wasn’t the most ideal way to close out an already poor season, but O’Brien may take solace in now having 18 games under his belt come 2019. If the Blues can strengthen their list, they’ll have a better chance of strengthening their draft crop.

Queensland weekly wrap: Under 17 Futures squad announced; AFL sides go down

THE Under 17 Futures squad has been announced as they ready to face Vic Country and improve to a positive record in the series. Meanwhile, both of the Queensland AFL sides suffered losses and the another round of the Reclink Cup played out.

Under 17 Queensland team named to face Vic County

On Monday the AFL Queensland announced their Under 17 side to face Victoria Country in their third future series game was announced. The game will take place at IKON Park on Sunday, August 12. Queensland has one win and one loss so far, going down to Tasmania then beating NSW/ACT in Southport.

Queensland Under 17 Squad

1. Danial Davidson
3. Hawego Paul Oea
5. Corey Joyce
6. Jack Wingrave
7.Lachlan Barry
8. Coby Williams
9. Connor Budarick
10. Jack Mosley
14. Will Martyn
15. Bruce Reville
16. Campbell Aston
17. Josh Gore
18. Brandon Deslandes
19. Gracen Sproule
21. Matt Fraser
22. Tom Jeffrey
23. Sam Butler
24. Nick Harberer
26. Matt Conroy
27. Ashton Crossley
28. Max Newman
30. Josh Hammond
32. Tom Wischnat
33. Samson Ryan

Lions and Suns go down

The Brisbane Lions and Gold Coast Suns both suffered losses in Round 19 of the AFL. Brisbane were brave for the first half in their 120-78 loss to Cats in Geelong. The Lions were right in the game at half time, only down 48-37 against a finals side. Unfortunately, the home side kicked away in the second half to tune of 11 goals to Brisbane’s six.

Two of Geelong’s favourite sons were the stars of the show. Tom Hawkins bagged seven goals whilst the ‘little master’ Gary Ablett amassed 38 disposals. For Brisbane, Dayne Beams continued a strong second half of 2018, collecting 37 disposals alongside Darcy Gardiner, Lewis Taylor and Dayne Zorko who got their hands on the leather for Brisbane. The Lions next face North Melbourne on Saturday afternoon at the Gabba.

In perhaps their most disappointing loss of the season, Gold Coast went down to fellow stragglers Carlton 79-44 at Metricon last Saturday night. Gold Coast came out hard taking a 14-point lead at the first change. From there though Carlton owned the game. The Blues kicked 11 goals to the Suns’ two over the remaining three quarters to run out 35 point victors.

Patrick Cripps bullied the Suns with 37 disposals and was joined by Marc Murphy and Kade Simpson who had 36 and 29 disposals each. Darcy Lang and Paddy Dow were also strong for Carlton, both kicking two goals apiece and getting a fair bit of the footy.

For Gold Coast, it was Jarryd Lyons again leading the way with 29 disposals. Will Brodie had a career high 27 disposals with Jarrod Witts winning the ruck battle over Matthew Lobbe with 60 hitouts and more than double Lobbe’s possessions.

The Suns have a tough game this week when they face the Melbourne Demons on Sunday afternoon from the MCG.


Lions win Reclink Brisbane Community Cup

The Brisbane Lines took out the third annual Reclink Brisbane Community Cup on Sunday July 29, beating the Rocking Horses 6.7 (43) to 5.6 (36).

The Reclink Cup features some of Brisbane’s musicians and politicians squaring off to raise funds for Reclink.

The Reclink Community Cup will make its way all around Australia in August and September, playing in; Hobart, Adelaide, Sydney, Fremantle and Canberra.

Tasmania weekly wrap: Mariners kick-off with a win; AFL hits Hobart

THIS week in Tasmanian football has seen the Tassie Mariners begin their Under 18 Academy Series; the state’s All Nations team making the grand final; North Melbourne easily accounting for Carlton in Hobart; TSL action continuing; and an update on the AFL Tasmania Steering Committee.

Mariners kick off 2018 Academy Series in style

The Tassie Mariners won their first game of the 2018 Under 18 Academy Series with a victory over the Gold Coast Suns Academy in Blacktown last Saturday. The Mariners produced a five-goal final quarter to run out eventual winners 15.9 (99) to 8.6 (54) with captain Chayce Jones doing his draft chances no harm, kicking four goals and being named in the best players by coach Lance Spaulding. Excitement machine Tarryn Thomas had 23 disposals and showed some great glimpses throughout the match.

The team will now face the Northern Territory on Sunday in Dandenong, Victoria from 10:30am at Shepley Oval.

AFL Diversity Championships

Tasmania has fallen agonisingly short of claiming the 2018 All Nations trophy at this week’s AFL Diversity Championships with the side going down to Victoria in a one-point thriller on Thursday. In a rollercoaster of events, Tasmania were awarded a mark and a 50-metre penalty to kick for goal after the siren, before being called back to take the kick again, with the second kick falling short and awarding Victoria the win.

North continues dominant run at Blundstone Arena

North Melbourne defeated Carlton to the tune of 86 points on a cold night last Saturday at Blundstone Arena. A crowd of 14,266 packed into the Bellerive stadium on a cold and blistery night with many expecting too see a much tighter contest.

Homegrown product Ben Brown starred for the hosts, kicking 5.1, with North never really challenged after quarter time. Things turned disastrous for Carlton before the first ball had even been bounced when captain Marc Murphy injured his foot in the warm-up and was replaced by Nick Graham. It was later revealed that the injury will keep Murphy out for a month. Midfielder Shaun Higgins racked up 35 disposals for the Kangaroos while Ed Curnow was the Blues’ best with 26 disposals and seven tackles.

North now face Hawthorn at Etihad Stadium (3:20pm) on Sunday while Carlton host West Coast at the MCG tomorrow from 4:35pm.

TSL Round 3 wrap and Round 4 preview

Round 3 of the BUPA TSL kicked off last Saturday with a couple of games throwing out surprising results.

Launceston accounted for Lauderdale by 62 points at Lauderdale Oval, thanks to a six goals to one last quarter. It was a much improved performance by the Bombers coming off their loss to Glenorchy, but it was the tall forward-line of Sonny Whiting (4) and Mitch Thorp (3) that were able to put away last year’s grand finalists, who now sit 0-3.

In the season’s biggest upset so far, Glenorchy ran out 52-point winners over North Launceston at UTAS Stadium after a stomach-bug took out 11 players from the host’s on Saturday morning. It was an even spread from the Magpies who, while losing the midfield battle, where able to set-up defensively to hold last season’s premiers to a 7.9 (51) scoreline while kicking 16.7 (103) themselves.

In the round’s final game, North Hobart put in a much improved performance against Clarence after their 131-point defeat to Launceston in Round 2. The Roos ran out eventual winners 13.18 (96) to 4.8 (32) and were able to hold the Demons to a solitary major in the second half, but the Dees brought a highly physical and contested game to the Roos.

This week sees Round 4 action kicking off tonight (20/4) with two Friday night games taking place. Glenorchy will host North Hobart at KGV while Lauderdale travel to the Twin Ovals in Kingston to face the Tigers with both games kicking off at 7:15pm. The final game of the round sees Clarence host North Launceston at Blundstone Arena on Saturday from 2:00pm.

AFL Tasmania Steering Committee Update

In an article written by The Age’s Peter Ryan, it was revealed that the committee has tabled a number of options for the future of Tasmanian football.

While it is clear that nothing has yet been set in stone, a number of options have been tabled including:

  • Putting a Tasmanian team in the NEAFL competition;
  • Continuing the TSL in its current form or with some changes;
  • Reverting to northern and southern leagues and;
  • a push to put the Tassie Mariners back in the TAC Cup competition.

No resolution is expected until the June 30 deadline they set to deliver recommendations on the future of the TSL and player pathways.

The Number One: Part One

NUMBER One. The First. The Best. The Brightest; but is it all what it’s cracked up to be?
So much is made of the first pick in the National Draft each year, in print, conversation and online they are dissected, combed over in the most minute way, but are we placing too much pressure on the shoulders of those taken first? Is it in fact, a poisoned chalice for many? 
In the first of series of related pieces, I will be exploring the three players I feel are the greatest ones to wear the mantle of the number one pick in the AFL Draft. 
The following will be biggest disappointments in Part 2, and finally the challengers for 2018 and the ‘Best Of’ side from the birth of the National Draft in 1981 to last year in 2017.
So without further preamble, on to the third place getter: 
#3 Drew Banfield – Pick 1, 1992 AFL Draft.
184cm 88kg, 265 games (76 goals)
A choice that will surprise many, particularly listed ahead of such players as Adam Cooney – the only Pick 1 Brownlow Medallist – Brendon Goddard and Marc Murphy, Banfield gets the nod for his combination of premiership success, superb overall career standard, and longevity. 
What makes him standout even more is that all of the above players were picked in an era when drafting had either become a much more complete science or was indeed a fully professional and well-resourced pursuit. In 1992, when Banfield got the nod, he was only its twelfth Pick 1. By contrast last years pick, Brisbane’s Cam Rayner, was the 37th, and it is fair to say we have got a long, long way in 25 years.
Banfield was in many ways a man ahead of his time. Versatile in both defence and midfield, his game was built on a prodigious running ability, strong body and a raking left foot. Translated into the modern game with its emphasis on gut running and extraordinary fitness, it would not be a shock to see him challenge for significant honours year in and year out.
As it was, he was a key cog in the mighty Eagles sides of the mid 90s and early 00s, a premiership winner 12 years apart in both 1994 and 2006, something that remains remarkable for what it says about his dedication to the craft. His sole best and fairest win came in 1996, but he featured in the top 10 six times, all of them coming in the seven years between 1995 and 2001.
A selfless and superb player, he deserves his spot.
#2 Nick Riewoldt – Pick 1, 2000 AFL Draft.
193cm 96kg, 336 games (718 goals)
The Saints have been oddly blessed flying, freakishly athletic blonde blokes over the years, from premiership defender Verdun Howell to ruck tyro Carl Ditterich and the late great Trevor Barker, but none epitomised the club and its vainglorious history than its longest-serving captain. 
Six-time best and fairest winner, five-time All-Australian, four-time club leading goalkicker and the AFL record holder for marks, he ground opponents into defeat through relentless running.
Though he never experienced ultimate success, the Saints superstar had countless highlights in his storied career, perhaps typified by one of the most courageous marks ever captured on camera against Sydney at the SCG at 2004, where his cartwheeling dismount from Stephen Milne’s head had many at the ground wondering if he had seriously hurt himself in the process.
Hard as it is to believe when looking at his statistics, Riewoldt began his career as a rangy defender, winning the 2002 Rising Star award from centre-half back. His retirement in 2017 occasioned an outpouring of praise seldom seen in football; a fitting end for a great champion.
#1 Luke Hodge – Pick 1, 2001 AFL Draft.
185cm 90kg, 306 games (193 goals)*
Four time premiership player – three as captain – three time All-Australian, twice Norm Smith Medallist and twice best and fairest, and with a laundry list of other honours, it is hard to believe that he originally considered a mistaken pick and the lesser light of the trio taken in the so-called “Super Draft” with Chris Judd and Luke Ball. He was nominated in 2002 for the Rising Star award, but was beaten in the end by another colossus of the game (who also features in this list).
As strange as it may be to now see the boy from Colac running around in a Lions guernsey, Hodge was the cornerstone the Hawks legendary three-peat, with his composed reading of the play, cool head and searing left boot off half back and through the middle. His hard edged style characterised the ‘unsociable football’ the Clarkson-coached premiership teams were known for, and while his aggression at the ball and man sometimes crossed the line, when the whips were cracking there was no one you would rather have next to you. 
Having announced his retirement in 2017, Hodge was talked into lacing up the boots once more as a mentor for the young Lions list, and on the limited evidence so far available, shows no signs of slowing down, or taking a backward step.
A future Hall of Famer and genuine legend.