WITH the NAB League sides enjoying a development weekend, we cast out eyes over the Under 17 Futures double-header at Ikon Park on Sunday to see who would catch them – this week selecting three players from each side. For full scouting notes on each player highlighted and more, click here.
Vic Country vs. NSW/ACT
Sam Berry (Vic Country)
Gippsland Power | Midfielder
12/02/2002 | 180cm | 82kg
Stats: 23 disposals, 4 marks, 6 tackles, 6 clearances, 1 goal
Our scouts said: “His clearance work was great but it was also his skill with ball in hand that stood out, and despite looking like the type to just win the hard ball and bomb it, he actually took the time to hit his targets on both feet.” – Ed Pascoe
Verdict: Arguably the best Country player on the day, Berry is well and truly a proven ball winner having continued from the form he showed in the NAB League. Is tenacious at the coalface, but has a good burst and should assume the number one midfield role for Gippsland next year.
Zavier Maher (Vic Country)
Murray Bushrangers | Midfielder
5/05/2002 | 183cm | 82kg
Stats: 20 disposals, 7 marks, 6 tackles, 5 clearances, 7 inside 50s
Our scouts said: “Maher covered plenty of ground and played a good mix to win his own ball but also work hard to get around the ground on the outside” – Ed Pascoe
Verdict: Complimented Berry beautifully in midfield as another with good size. Is another who looks likely to take over the leading midfield mantle at his NAB League club next year and will do well to transfer the numbers he had in this game to that competition.
Deakyn Smith (Vic Country)
Dandenong Stingrays | Small Forward
22/08/2002 | 179cm | 65kg
Stats: 14 disposals, 8 marks, 4 tackles, 3 inside 50s, 2 goals
Our scouts said: “Smith got better and better as the game went on and his combination of speed and aerial ability made him a difficult matchup.” – Ed Pascoe
Verdict: Is such a slippery customer and much of the NSW/ACT side had no answer for his tricks in the forward half. Has played in different roles for Dandenong, but was dangerous inside 50 here and works hard to find space up the field.
Braeden Campbell (NSW/ACT)
Swans Academy | Midfielder/Forward
4/02/2002 | 178cm | 71kg
Stats: 18 disposals, 4 marks, 7 tackles, 5 clearances, 7 inside 50s, 2 goals
Our scouts said: “Another of the diminutive Swans Academy fleet, Campbell has a great mix of inside and outside skills.” – Michael Alvaro
Verdict: Is right behind Errol Gulden in terms of leading the NSW/ACT prospects pack and can play a variety of positions. Already gained U18 representative experience in the Allies squad this year and his added midfield time in this game bodes well for a transition from his usual half-forward role.
Errol Gulden (NSW/ACT)
Swans Academy | Wing
18/07/2002 | 172cm | 68kg
Stats: 19 disposals, 5 marks, 4 clearances, 4 inside 50s, 2 rebound 50s
Our scouts said: “Gulden continually used his innate ability to find space of the outside to send the Rams forward, getting on the move and piercing some classy passes along the line.” – Michael Alvaro
Verdict: Is just so classy by foot and there is hardly a player better to watch at this level that Gulden on the run forward. He looks primed for another big year after impressing for the Allies and Swans Academy in 2019, and should catch the eye with his ability to make low-percentage passes work.
Pierce Roseby (NSW/ACT)
Swans Academy | Inside Midfielder
4/01/2002 | 179cm | 72kg
Stats: 17 disposals, 7 tackles, 7 clearances, 1 goal
Our scouts said: “It was another workmanlike shift from the small midfielder, who proved ferocious around the ball going both ways.” – Michael Alvaro
Verdict: Roseby might be sub-180cm, but is one of the more tenacious players around the ball and just does all of the tough stuff. Is one of many Swans Academy prospects who looked right at home in Rams colours, and will be an interesting one for Sydney to keep an eye on given their ageing midfield.
Vic Metro vs. Queensland
Connor Downie (Vic Metro)
Eastern Ranges | Wing/Midfielder
31/05/2002 | 183cm | 81kg
Stats: 20 disposals, 4 marks, 4 tackles, 4 inside 50s, 2 rebound 50s
Our scouts said: “The Ranges’ gun swapped time between the wing and midfield, having an impact going forward with raking left boot and clunking a strong mark on forward wing under heat.” – Michael Alvaro
Verdict: Was the only player afield to have some U18 championships experience under his belt, which speaks to his quality. Downie has proven his ability to damage teams on the outside with his run and penetrating kick, but his size makes him an interesting midfield proposition. Does a bit of everything and should have no trouble finding the ball.
Finlay Macrae (Vic Metro)
Oakleigh Chargers | Midfielder
13/03/2002 | 183cm | 73kg
Stats: 34 disposals, 6 marks, 5 clearances, eight inside 50s, one goal
Our scouts said: “Best afield for mine… Macrae built into the game nicely, starting with some clean and effective accumulative touches before really having an impact in the second half.” – Michael Alvaro
Verdict: Macrae’s pedigree is obvious to all, accumulating possessions at will through midfield with clean hands and touch of class. Did not always damage with ball in hand but has the ability to turn it on, doing so in the final term with a raft of score involvements. Made the U18 Metro squad this year and is a lock get on the park next year.
Reef McInnes (Vic Metro)
Oakleigh Chargers | Inside Midfielder
12/12/2002 | 192cm | 83kg
Stats: 24 disposals, 9 tackles, 6 clearances, 4 inside 50s, 2 rebound 50s
Our scouts said: “His clean hands, strength in the contest, and tackling made him the dominant inside midfielder, but his spread and props in traffic bode well for a well-balanced game.” – Michael Alvaro
Verdict: Collingwood has found another gem in its NGA ranks, with McInness a fantastic inside midfield prospect. He started the game better than anyone and just finds the ball, working hard to do so around the ground. Has already made an impact with Oakleigh too, and is a great size.
Blake Coleman (Queensland)
Lions Academy | Forward
6/08/2002 | 180cm | 75kg
Stats: 13 disposals, 4 marks, 5 tackles, 3 inside 50s, 2 goals
Our scouts said: “Coleman was one of Queensland’s most dangerous players up forward with his skill and composure a real standout in the wet conditions.” – Ed Pascoe
Verdict: Coleman just does not miss in front of goal, only needing a few chances to have an impact on the game. His class is obvious, constantly finding space in the right areas around the forward 50 and finishing well. Can now work on consistency and having more of the ball.
Saxon Crozier (Queensland)
Lions Academy | Balanced Midfielder
14/11/2002 | 189cm | 75kg
Stats: 17 disposals, 5 tackles, 3 clearances, 6 inside 50s
Our scouts said: “Crozier was often classy with ball in hand, making good decisions and moving well in traffic and he really stood out with his kicking inside 50.” – Ed Pascoe
Verdict: Is constantly one of the more influential players between the arcs, but is developing a greater inside game and does not mind getting stuck in despite his best traits suiting the outside. Crozier is a good forward mover and can rack up the numbers at his best.
Max Pescud (Queensland)
SUNS Academy | Wing/Forward
13/04/2002 | 183cm | 60kg
Stats: 16 disposals, 6 marks, 5 tackles, 2 rebound 50s, 2 goals
Our scouts said: “Pescud despite his light frame had a real impact on the game kicking two goals and showing his class and composure up the field as well.” – Ed Pascoe
Verdict: There’s just something to like about the lightly-built Pescud, who worked hard on the outside all day. Has the ability to win a good amount of ball there, but also makes the most of his chances when slipping forward and contributes across the board.