Tag: patrick walker

Scouting notes and weekly wrap: TSL – Round 5

IT was a big weekend of Tasmanian State League (TSL) action as a number of Tasmanian Devils prospects past and present ran around for respective clubs in the three matches over the weekend. We took notes on some of the young guns and recap how the matches went down.

CLARENCE vs. TIGERS

Tigers recorded their first win of the 2020 TSL season with an upset 15-point victory over Clarence. The win was on the back of a dominant first three quarters where Tigers piled on 12 goals to four in an impressive performance. Clarence roared to life in he final term as they booted 5.3 to 0.1, but still fell short of victory, going down 12.5 (77) to 9.8 (62). Luke Graham and Tyler Carter slotted three goals each for Tigers, as Kieran Lovell ran amok around the ground. Will Campbell and Zach Adams were other impressive players for the yellow and black. For the Roos, Oliver Davis was unbelievable and features in our notes, as does Sam Banks, while former Brisbane and Essendon goalsneak Josh Green slotted three majors in defeat.

By: Peter Williams

Clarence:

#20 Oliver Davis

Had a sensational outing and was clearly one of the Roos’ bet and four quarter performers. The AFL Academy member started onball and played there primarily other than the odd rest inside 50. His stoppage nous was terrific, and he was always burrowing in to either win the ball or lay a tackle on his opponent. Davis is able to find the exit at stoppages and read the taps well, and in the second term he got a quick snap off out of a stoppage to set up a goal for Josh Green. He has the smarts to reduce the impact of an opponent as well, by corralling them into a space – as he did in the third term at half-back – which forces them to retreat to safety and allow his teammates numbers to get back on the transition. Davis is definitely one of those pure inside ball winners and while sometimes he can be overzealous with his tackling, he is not afraid to crack in time and time again, showing off a high work rate. Reminded me a bit of Dylan Clarke at Under 18s level.

#23 Sam Banks

Played an outside role along and wing and drifting into either 50 when adding an extra number. Did not need to win a heap of the ball to do damage when he had his chance. His work under pressure is good, able to kick safely from half-back to the wing without putting it out on the full and gained vital metres. As a ball-winning midfielder, Banks did get caught out once by being sucked into the defensive 50 stoppage in the second term, and his opponent snuck out the back where an opposition player found him lurking at the top of 50. Banks’ offensive traits are superb though, and he showed in the third term what he can do with time and space, putting on the jets and burning off an opponent to kick long to the goalsquare where it almost created a goal-scoring opportunity.

Tigers:

#31 Lachlan Gadomski (Tigers)

The athletic 20-year-old remained in the interest of AFL recruiters last year, and he showed in little bursts what he is capable of. Having a clean run at it for a change this season, Gadomski was reliable in defence, with clean hands in the air and a strong aerial presence. He was hungry for the ball and laid some fierce tackles, but was also creative on the last line, often looked at as the option to switch play or, as on one occasion, go long down the middle. His pressure game was exemplified by winning a one-on-two contested in the back pocket where he was able to get the ball across the line, and in the fourth term, he did well not to give away a free backing back to a one-on-one and spoiling it to rush a behind.

 

LAUDERDALE vs. NORTH LAUNCESTON

North Launceston kicked into gear after a slow first half to pick up another win in its premiership defence season. The Bombers trailed by six points at quarter time against another top four side in Lauderdale, but after hitting the front by half-time (one point), ran away with it in the second half to boot six goals to two and secure a 10.7 (67) to 6.5 (41) victory. Nick Baker was terrific for Lauderdale and features in the notes, while Phillip Bellchambers, Josh McGuinness and Luke Nelson (three goals) were also impressive. For the winners though, Jackson Callow slotted two goals alongside Bart McCulloch, as youngster Sherrin Egger (one) and Alex Lee, were named amongst the best.

By: Fraser Stewart

Lauderdale:

#17 Nick Baker

Set up Lauderdale’s first goal of the game with impressive vision down on the wing. Impressive off half-back and was not afraid to show his attacking style of play often going forward to try and spark a Lauderdale attack, while at the same time showing great speed which was evident throughout the second half of the game. As well as showing a great instinct to attack, he was also calm in defence when the pressure was on him often defusing various North Launceston attacks through intercept marks and was even calm when he rushed a behind which shows he has the knowledge of match awareness in defence.

North Launceston:

#16 Ollie Sanders

Was quiet for much of the first half, came to life throughout the third term. However, he was always around the contest and it could be noted that much of his work went unnoticed as he was often the first person to get the ball out of a contest. It could be noted that his style more focussing on the one-percenters in which he contributed with a few spoils and pressure acts. Took a strong mark late in the third quarter to help slow the play showed good knowledge.

#21 Sherrin Egger

Set up North Launceston’s first goal of the game as he set up a Jackson Callow set shot off a clearance. He was impressive around the stoppages as he knows when to get the ball out often through a quick handball to set up a North Launceston attack. He also showed good composure when facing traffic often manoeuvring out of the way of Lauderdale’s oncoming players. He showed good vision too, and this was evident when he was on the wing as he knew where to kick it. Earned himself a 100-metre penalty early in the last quarter and kicked a goal, he goes hard at the contest too.

#25 Jackson Callow

It took 16 minutes for Callow to show what he is capable of as he kicked the first goal of the game with a great lead after a great chest mark. He was everywhere throughout the game plying his trade at half-forward where he kicked two goals and kicked it cleanly off the boot, in the ruck where he showed a great leap and even won a few hitouts. He also spent the majority of the last term in the backline defusing various Lauderdale attacks through intercept marks and spoils. On top of that, he can also be a handy midfield player too, as he was collecting possessions when he was near the ball. He has the potential to be a very useful player for any side as this game showed he can be a great utility that can play pretty much everywhere and has the footy smarts to go along with it. 

 

NORTH HOBART vs. LAUNCESTON

By: Eli Duxson

It was a captivating matchup in a top of the table clash which went right down to the wire despite a slow first half scoring wise. North Hobart looked like finally breaking Launceston’s undefeated streak after leading by two points at the main break, but then Launceston edged in front and held on to the lead to secure a memorable three-point win, 9.7 (61) to 9.4 (58) in one of the games of the season. While proven performers in Bailey Walker and Dylan Riley (four goals) stood out for either side, we will take a look at some of the young talent on display at North Hobart Oval in North Hobart’s Jake Steele, Hamish Allan, Will Peppin, Jye Menzie, Patrick Walker, and Sam Collins and Launceston’s Jared Dakin.

North Hobart

#11 Jake Steele

Steele has become the focal point of the Demons’ forward line having developed rapidly in the senior environment. The first forward entry of the game scrubbed its way into Steele who could not trap it which set the tone for much of his first quarter. He left the forward 50 on many occasions and provided a solid outlet target for North Hobart and despite not managing a mark until later in the quarter, he contested and brought it ground for his teammates to go to work. He made the most of some relaxed Launceston defence to mark uncontested 30 metres out and drilled it to give him his only goal for the day. Despite not impacting the scoreboard for the rest of the game, he showed his endurance with big efforts to create an outlet target in the back pocket. His field kicking looked scratchy but his willingness to push up the ground and help his defence is certainly a positive aspect of his game.

The second half saw him help Allan in the ruck and despite giving up some strength to Launceston ruckman Tim Auckland, he used his athleticism to not allow an easy clearance at stoppages for the Blues. When the game was at peak intensity in the final quarter, he managed to keep a cool head under pressure with a slick handball out of a pack to a runner on the wing which set up a deep forward entry, and taking an important intercept mark on his goal line.

Though he will look to continue working on his ball use around the ground, the Demons will be pleased with his improvement and ability to play as a key position player who can swing through the ruck. If he can turn his big spoils and marking contests into big contested marks, he will be a dangerous player moving forward.

#15 Hamish Allan

The matchup between he and Auckland from the outset was one to watch and he certainly did not back down an inch. The 205cm and 100kg brute of a 19-year-old showed an impressive amount of athleticism and endurance for much of the game, earning him a spot in his side’s best players. He thumped the ball from the very first ruck contest of the game and looked ominous from the outset. Later in the first quarter he even managed a clearance and a rebound 50 as he was willing to win, and use, his own ball. The second quarter provided one of the highlights of the game as he went for a big hanger in the middle of the ground. Even though he did not have to jump as high as the average player would have, it was still a good grab with a knee in the back of his opponent. Looking like he was unsure of what to do with it, he looked to go left, and then lumbered his way to his right and around the man on the mark to send it inside 50 where no North Hobart players were, unfortunately.

With Steele assisting him in the ruck for a lot of the second half, he managed to rest up forward and snagged a goal from a contested mark, slotting the goal from 25 metres out. He continued to show that he was not just a tall who slapped the ball out of the ruck, he even takes big pack marks leading up the wings much like Steele did when the Demons were moving forward. Further showing off his endurance, whenever he was in the ruck, he worked back defensively to plug the hole and did it effectively.

A very impressive game from the big man would have caught the eye of many as the prototype ruckman has started to turn into the hard-working athletic tall who can do it on both ends. Allan certainly has this ability and the only way is up for him.

#19 Will Peppin

The Devil from last season in the versatile Peppin found himself moving from the wing to the backline in what was a tough contest with the ladder leaders and despite his slight build, he looked to win his own ball on several occasions. He found his way to good spots and looked most comfortable floating down and getting the ball out the back. His ball use let him down for much of the first half, but he has done the hard yards to possess the ball which is what he would have been happy with. The first quarter saw a slick spin move and gather inside a defensive 50 pack, but an errant handball was the first of a few forgettable disposals for Peppin. Doing the grunt work with no result is far from a negative as clean and consistent ball use will come with confidence and experience at the level. His second quarter saw a drastic improve with an effortless side-step and switch kick deep in his defensive 50 hitting a target, and a well-weighted chip kick up the other end for a dropped mark from a teammate.

His second half showed off his pace as he assisted Allan for an easy goal, but it also showed off his inside work as he was willing to get in and under and scrap to win the hard balls. Even though he was muscled out of a contest early in the last quarter, he persisted on showing great poise in the defensive half of the ground in the manic moments as he started to become lively with their defensive exits. One of which included a big kick off the ground where he continued on to get on the end of a handball from his teammate who gathered his kick, as he found a target inside 50 for a shot on goal.

Even with a tough start in terms of disposal efficiency, he came into his own for most of the game and showed a level-head under defensive pressure. He will be looking to add some strength, but his inside and outside balance are a key feature of his game.

#46 Jye Menzie 

Menzie had a quiet game on his standards playing out of half-forward for the Demons but looked very threatening whenever he was around the ball. He led up strongly in the first quarter to mark at the centre of the ground and drilled a low ball to a target inside 50 who assisted a goal. Trying to get himself involved a bit more with Launceston doing most of the attacking in the second quarter, he found his way to the half back-flank to help with an exit. Menzie made a grubby kick from Steele look very good with an impressive ground ball gather at pace and under pressure, as he showed composure up against the boundary line and find a target with a handball. His pressure near the contest was also a highlight of his, a trait that many forwards require as they do not typically impact the game through high possessions.

His second half continued the same way his first half did with high impact on contests, but he would still like to find the footy a bit more. Menzie won a crucial one-on-one centre wing with a clean one-hand gather on the chaos ball before losing his footing. That did not affect him that much as he bounced back up to remain poised and recorded a goal assist with a kick to advantage inside 50. Being the link option between flanks for most of the game, Menzie found some space inside forward 50 following a quick Demons rebound, but unfortunately could not convert the 45-metre kick.

He may not have had as many possessions as he would have liked, but his defensive pressure, impact on contests and clean hands and disposal are what you want out of your forwards. Soon enough, his effort will turn into scoreboard results on a more consistent basis as it has in previous weeks.

#48 Patrick Walker

The AFL Academy member played predominantly on the wing as his run and carry and penetrating kick was on display. He injected himself into the game with a strong first quarter setting up well around stoppages to get clearances, while also finding himself free on transition plays to use his neat kicking to keep pushing it forward. Late in the opening quarter he drifted forward and took a mark in front of his opponent 45 metres out, but a 50-metre penalty put him on the goal line, and he put it straight through the middle. A quieter second quarter meant he almost got himself a second goal but fumbled at the wrong moment.

His second half also started a bit quieter than his blistering start to the game, but his play picked up with the intensity of the game in the final quarter as he halved a big contest in his defensive half before receiving help from teammates. His work did not stop there as he received a handball 60 metres away to pump it deep inside his forward 50. He continued to pop up in important spots as he had another shot on goal which just missed and covered good ground to create options on rebounds and entries.

Though he did have some quiet patches, he managed to maintain position and discipline as a wingman and more importantly, he played that linking role well with good ball use. He is a bit of a Lachie Whitfield type with a lean build, but good disposal and still an ability to find and win his own ball.

#49 Sam Collins

Normally playing as an attacking defender, he was given the responsibility of playing on the last line of defence against the Hudson Medal leader in Riley. The AFL Academy member showed he was up to it for much of the game, but a burst of brilliance from Riley may not reflect that if you only looked at the score sheet. He was caught behind on a few occasions due to quick ball movement off the turnover from Launceston but was not caught behind by much. He still scrapped at all contests but not had not conceded a goal for the first half. He kicked the ball well and found good options as his attacking mindset paid off when trying to escape tricky situations. He continued to find his own ball despite his tough assignment for the first half, but a missed spoil and loose body checking showed there are still things to work on if he wants to be a key defender moving forward.

Collins showed great closeout speed and ball reading all day, but there was not a lot he could have done to stop Launceston and Riley in the third quarter. Perfect kicks to space and strong hands meant Riley kicked his four goals for the day in the third quarter. To Collins’ credit, he did not give up. As you do as a defender, you force your opponent to kick goals from tough spots and work hard for it, and that is exactly what Collins did. He was on his tail for every lead and forced Riley toward the boundary.

His ball use was certainly a highlight of his game and all things considered, he defended well on a classy operator who enjoyed a quarter you do not have very often. He has all the attributes of a key defender as he reads the play well, has great closeout speed and with time, he will add some more strength to take on opponents like Riley moving forward.

Launceston:

#20 Jared Dakin

With no Isaac Chugg out there, he was the sole Devil representative for the Blues who did not enjoy the type of game that he has in recent weeks. He played in the forward half all day and did not impact the scoreboard, but he did pop up at good times to apply defensive pressure. He created a forward 50 boundary throw in due to a strong closeout and intercept spoil. Later in the quarter he hit up Riley inside 50 with a mark she should have taken. Besides kicking into the man on the mark, his first half was full of good pressure around the ball, he just could not get his hands on it.

Much like the other young talent on display, Dakin turned it on with the heat of the game in the final quarter, bringing that pressure and turning it into shots on goal. He hit the post after marking inside 50 and took a big contested mark further afield. He started to look dangerous when he laid a crunching tackle to create a forward 50 stoppage, before muscling out a handball while wrapped up.

He will certainly look to have more output in coming weeks, but his effort never wavered. He continued to apply defensive pressure and be physical around the stoppage.

ROUND 5 RESULTS:

Clarence 9.8 (62) defeated by Tigers 12.5 (77)
Lauderdale 6.5 (41) defeated by North Launceston 10.7 (67)
North Hobart 9.4 (58) defeated by Launceston 9.7 (61)

Guilford Young celebrate come-from-behind win over St Patricks in opening SATIS clash

GUILFORD Young College booted six of the last seven goals of the game to come from behind and run over the top of St Patrick’s in the opening game of the SATIS Division 1 season on Wednesday afternoon. A two-goal final term to Tasmania Devils’ Lachlan Borsboom sealed the win for the visiting side who would have headed back down the Midland Highway pleased with an eight-point victory, 7.4 (46) to 6.2 (38).

St Patrick’s had the upper hand early after the game was moved from UTAS to St Patrick’s after the former was inundated with snow from the previous night. It meant Guilford Young had to make the trek up from the southern location to their opponents’ home ground and were on the back foot, but the visitors settled down, kicking the opening goal through big man, David Monks. His long-range set shot was soon countered four and a half minutes later by Angus Jeffries who got St Patrick’s up and about in a low-scoring opening term. Both sides were a goal apiece in wet and windy conditions.

The home team got the jump in the second term and controlled play to boot the only three goals of the second term. After being held well in the opening term – partially due to the terrible conditions for key forwards – Jackson Callow began to get involved, setting up scoring opportunities and even kicking a behind or two himself. Fellow Tasmania Devils talent Oliver Sanders marked inside 50 and handed his team the advantage, which had broken a fair goal drought. Firmly in control, Declan Chugg added his name to the goalkickers list with a major 25m out, with a last minute goal following a turnover from Oliver Davis to Callow who quickly played on and hit up Ben Hyatt one-on-one in the goalsquare. In what would be the last kick of the half, Hyatt turned around and booted it home, for a 4.2 (26) to 1.0 (6) half-time lead.

Callow had worked into the game in that second term, with Sanders and Angus Jeffries looking strong, as was Oliver Chugg. The Guilford Young captain, Davis had been one of the more prominent players in the first half, with AFL Under 16s Most Valuable Player (MVP) Sam Banks, as well as Sanders, Sam Collins and Dom White also busy.

The second half opened with a lightning quick clearance out of the middle from Tony Aganas who was moved into the ruck, roved his own tap and then kicked off the ground forward. A free was paid to St Patrick’s, but the quick give off to Sanders had a fifth goal – and his second – for the home side in the opening minute. From then on though, Guilford Young owned the game. Coach Blair Brownless shuffled around the magnets and got the visiting team moving the ball more aggressively and it started to show on the scoreboard. As the lead had got out to 26 points at one stage, the losing side hit back with three goals, starting with key forward Noah Holmes‘ snap around his body. Darcy Gardiner made it two with a similar attempt midway through the term, and then a silly free kick against the home side for bowling over Banks in midfield gave Davis a 50m penalty and brought him to within range. He duly delivered for his side’s third consecutive goal, and while the home team had a real chance with a few minutes remaining going deep inside 50, Patrick Walker clunked a huge contested grab to save the day.

After a disappointing second half of the third term, St Patrick’s needed an early major in the last to steady the ship, and once again it was Aganas who got the ball moving out of the ruck straight to Zach Morris. He unloaded from 50m with the breeze and all of a sudden the home team was back in control with a 6.2 (38) to 4.1 (25) lead in wet and windy conditions. But, in what was also near-identical to the third term, Guilford Young through everything at St Patrick’s in what would be a memorable final term. Borsboom became the match winner with two final term goals, starting with a quick answer to Monks’ major a few minutes later. Out of nothing the Tasmania Devils’ talent snapped around his body for a goal, and then Ned Ward made it two not long after to level the scores.

With the teams neck-and-neck through the midpoint of the quarter, it looked as though Holmes would be the saviour with a mark not too far out from goal after a strong mark following an end-to-end play. A Banks tackle in the middle had set up the scoring opportunity for the Clarence big man, but he sprayed it to the right. His behind was enough to put his team in front though, and they never surrendered the lead. Marking straight from the kickout, Holmes had another chance, albeit from much further out. It was on target but rushed across the line, but crucially it handed the visitors a two-point lead. Then came the match-winner in Borsboom who won a free kick 15m out on a tight angle after a frustrated Callow gave away a free kick at the top of the defensive 50 for being double-teamed. Borsboom delivered for the second time in the term to hand his side the comfortably lead, and they held on from there.

The turnaround occurred because Guilford Young dared to dream and attacked relentlessly in the second half, as St Patrick’s had chances, but were slower with the ball movement and had tried to stem the momentum against Guilford Young such as throwing Callow behind the ball. Unsurprisingly, Borsboom was one of the winners’ best, with Davis and Banks playing key roles, and Homes providing a target inside 50. Callow worked hard throughout the game, while Sanders was terrific, as was Aganas and Hyatt, but to no avail.

The victory got Guilford Young off to the perfect start in the SATIS Division 1 season, with the second Round 1 game between Hutchins and Scotch Oakburn to take place on Saturday at 1.30pm. St Patricks then home to take full advantage of Scotch Oakburn’s four-day turnaround with a clash back at St Patrick’s next Wednesday, while Guilford Young has an extended break until Saturday, August 15 when it hosts the fifth side in the division – Grammar.

Tasmanian weekly preview: Top of the table TSL clash highlights Round 5 action

A TOP of the table Tasmanian State League (TSL) clash between Launceston and North Hobart is the highlight of a big weekend of Tasmanian football action. Lauderdale and North Launceston lock horns in a third against fourth clash, as Clarence and Tigers will meet in both the TSL and TSL Women’s competitions. In the other TSL Women’s meeting, Glenorchy and Launceston lock horns in a much anticipated clash.

There is little doubt Launceston is the team to beat this season with the best offence and defence, as the only team above 250 points (276) and the only one conceding less than 130 (127) this season. They take on a much improved North Hobart team that has put its wooden spoon season behind it and picked up two wins in three games. The one loss was a gallant one against reigning premiers, North Launceston, but this is going to be an even greater challenge for the young Demons who have some terrific youth prospects.

Stringing back-to-back wins together, Jye Menzie and Nathan Harvey have each slotted five majors with Jake Steele (four) not far behind. Patrick Walker and Sam Collins are a couple of AFL Academy members to watch out for with plenty of talent. The key to stopping the Blues is limiting their damaging forward line, led by Dylan Riley (12 goals), with Jake Hinds (seven) and Mitch Thorp (five) not far behind. Jared Dakin and Collins might go head-to-head at some stage, whilst Tim Auckland is always a challenging player to beat around the ground. Yet to lose a game and sitting pretty eight points clear of their nearest rival – albeit with an extra game – they are the favourites in this clash.

North Launceston’s premiership defence has not started too bad this season, but dropping the Round 2 clash to Launceston would have hurt. They have since accounted for Clarence in a tough clash, and now face another challenger in Lauderdale that is looking to bounce back with a win after two consecutive losses. The Bombers prefer a lower scoring tight contest, and have done enough to keep the opposition under 70 points, but have not scored more than five goals in the past two weeks.

Lauderdale might look to leading goalkickers, Toutai Havea (seven goals) and Adrian Kalcovski (four) to kick a winning score, while their opponents have plenty of firepower up forward led by top-age talent Jackson Callow (five goals), and Brad Cox-Goodyer (four), while the likes of playing coach Taylor Whitford (three) and Corey Nankervis are always ones to watch.

In the final match of the round, Clarence will look to balance the ledger with a win against a winless Tigers side after going down in a tight contest to North Launceston last week. The Roos will be heavily fancied against a Tigers outfit that agonisingly came close to victory last week against Glenorchy but fell a point short. They have been competitive in two of their three losses, with a forgettable defeat at the hands of Launceston in Round 3.

Luke Graham (five goals) and Tyler Carter (four) have been shining lights in attack for Tigers, while Kieran Lovell is starting to get going for the league’s bottom side. Lachlan Gadomski and Oliver Burrows-Cheng are other talents who have been on the draft radar in year’s gone by and will be hoping to put their best foot forward. For the Roos, Noah Holmes booted four goals last week to race to equal second in his club’s goalkicking race with Oliver Preshaw, just behind Jeromey Webberley (five). Sam Banks is a name to watch out for next year while Oliver Davis should have plenty of time in the midfield throughout Clarence’s season as a top-age draft prospect.

TSL ROUND 4:

Clarence vs. Tigers
Lauderdale vs. North Launceston
North Hobart vs. Launceston

In the women’s match between Clarence and Tigers, the Roos are comfortably sitting in second with a massive percentage and will head into the clash with Tigers as heavy favourites. The damaging aspect about Clarence is that the Roos have an even spread of players across the ground. Jessie Williams booted seven goals in the Round 2 win, but only had the one last week as Jacinta Limbrick took centre stage with four. Amy Prokopiec, Netty Garlo and Tahlia Bortignon are among the young talents to watch on the Roos list.

Meanwhile Brooke Phillips broke through for Tigers’ first goal last week in the heavy defeat, whilst Kiira Johns and Mikayla Absolom have been named in the best on both occasions. Priscilla Odwogo was named best-on for the Tigers in the Round 3 loss, while Hailee Baldwin is another player who can stand up on her day.

The red hot Launceston is ready to make it three from three after having a rest in Round 3. They completely dominated Tigers by 81 points in Round 2, after holding North Launceston to the same score (one behind) but found the going a little tougher by only scoring the 26 points. Glenorchy is coming off a thumping of Tigers too, winning by 85 points, though the Magpies fell to Clarence the week before by 32.

Daria Bannister leads the goalkicking after her three goals against the Tigers, and what makes the Blues such a damaging unit is different players stand up on different days. Angela Dickson is the only player to have kicked a goal in both games, with eight individual goalkickers in the Round 2 rout, including one to top AFL Women’s talent, Mia King. Camilla Taylor is an over-age tall to keep an eye on, whilst Jennifer Guy is another named in the best for both games thus far. For Glenorchy, Sarah Skinner and Tiarna Ford have combined for nine majors, with Skinner and youngster Jemma Webster named in the best twice, leading an equally talented young list into battle.

TSL WOMEN’S ROUND 4:

Glenorchy vs. Launceston
Clarence vs. Tigers

Classic Contests: Cassar, Honey star as Jets soar past the Devils

IF you are missing footy like we are, then let us somewhat salvage that with a look back our series of Classic Contests. In today’s contest we look at one of the would-have-been Round 17 clashes in the NAB League this year between the Western Jets and Tasmania Devils. In this edition, we wind the clock back just one year to Round 5 of 2019, when the Jets soared to a comfortable win away from home.

2019 NAB League, Round 5
Sunday April 28, 11:45am
UTAS Stadium

TASMANIA DEVILS 1.4 | 1.6 | 2.7 | 3.8 (26)
WESTERN JETS 2.0 | 4.3 | 7.8 | 10.13 (73)

GOALS:

Tasmania: T. Penwright, L. Gadomski, I. Chugg.
Western:
A. Manton 3, J. Honey 2, E. Ford 2, A. Clarke, C. White, J. Horo.

BEST:

Tasmania: O. Burrows-Cheng, P. Walker, M. McGuinness, B. Gordon, L. Viney, O. Shaw
Western: 
D. Cassar, K. Borg, J. Kellett, J. Horo, W. Kennedy, L. Rocci

Draftees in action:

Tasmania: Matthew McGuinness
Western:
 Josh Honey

Two sides with a couple of wins already under their belts went head-to-head early in last year’s NAB League campaign, with Tasmania hosting the Western Jets at UTAS Stadium in Launceston. The Devils had made a positive start in their maiden full-time season, enjoying a bye in Round 1 and bouncing back from their Round 2 loss to take a 2-1 record heading into this clash. Western sat similarly poised at 2-2, having just secured a rebound victory over the Northern Territory a week earlier.

While the two regions would lay claim to a pair of draftees each come the end of the year, only one would take the field on either side; with North Melbourne rookie Matt McGuinness lining up for the home side, while Carlton recruit Josh Honey ran through midfield for Western. The Jets were missing Emerson Jeka, with Tasmania also down a tall target as Jackson Callow came out of the side. Fellow Academy-based bottom-agers Oliver Davis and Sam Collins were also absent alongside Mitch O’Neill in a blow to the Devils’ chances.

The losses seem to take toll early, as the Devils failed capitalise on their domination of the territory and possession. A 20-minute goalless patch ensued after debutant Isaac Chugg put through the game’s first goal, only for Western to hit back twice within the final five minutes of the opening term to hit the front. It seemed to sink the Devils a touch, as they went on to go goalless throughout the second stanza, while giving up another two goals and a 15-point deficit at half time – albeit in a low-scoring contest.

Lachlan Gadomski broke Tasmania’s hour-long goal drought with a major nine minutes into the third term, but it proved a feeble form of reply as Western continued to pile on the scoreboard pressure and extended the margin to 31 points at three quarter time. It was an unassailable gap, and the Jets only further ensured it would be a bridge too far as they kicked away to a nine-goal lead, only to settle for the final 47-point margin.

Darcy Cassar ran the show off half-back for Western, proving a key player in shifting the early momentum back into the Jets’ favour. He finished with 31 disposals, 13 marks, and eight rebound 50s, while Honey booted two goals from his 25 touches. Tasmanian pair Bailey Gordon and Patrick Walker matched that feat to be their sides’ leading ball winners. Archi Manton led the goalkicking stakes with three goals, followed by bottom-aged Eddie Ford and Honey on two. Oliver Burrows-Cheng and McGuinness were named among the Devils’ best.

Tasmania would go on to add just two wins to its record across the season, finishing in 12th spot at 4-11 and bowing out during Wildcard Round to Calder. The Jets earned a seventh-place finish, storming into finals where they upset Northern in the elimination stage, but had their run ended by Gippsland in the semi finals a week later.

Tasmanian weekly preview: Trio of TSL Women’s sides commence action in day of double-header action

THREE more Tasmanian State League (TSL) Women’s sides join the action for season 2020 this weekend, as Clarence and Glenorchy face off, and Tigers take on Round 1 losers, Launceston. Both clashes are intertwined with the men’s games tomorrow, whilst North Hobart and Lauderdale also play off in the TSL, as reigning premier North Launceston has the bye.

Launceston finally claimed a win over North Launceston last week, the first time in seven years and 18 tries that the Blues have been successful. The 19-point victory followed on from a 26-point triumph over Glenorchy the week before, as the Blues top the ladder after two rounds. Tigers had a bye in Round 1 and then were unlucky against the improved North Hobart, going down by 10 points in a neck-and-neck contest. They host the Blues this week in what is anticipated to be a tough game for the home side, so the Tigers need all the support they can get to try and cause and upset.

Dylan Riley and Jake Hinds have both slotted four goals in the first two games, identifying as a couple of dangerous players, while Jay Blackberry showed he can break a game open inside 50, booting a couple in quick succession to lead his team to victory against the Bombers. Young talent Jared Dakin was superb last week and named best on ground for his work on opposition playing coach, Taylor Whitford, and it will be interesting to see what role h has this weekend. The Tigers only have the one game to go off, but Luke Graham snagged three majors as Cooper Sawdy and Tyler Carter both kicked a couple. Kieran Lovell impressed and will be one to stop for the opposition.

Last week the Launceston TSL Women’s side had a low-scoring 25-point win over the Bombers with a three goals to nil second half. Brooke Brown booted two majors and Angela Dickson slotted one, while North Melbourne duo, Daria Bannister and Mia King were superb for the winners. While Tigers are yet to play this season, last year saw the likes of Cara Brooke, Maria Neal and Hailee Baldwin impress, named in the best nearly every game they played. Paige Flakemore led the goalkicking with 13, though Tigers finished fifth on the table, and the last match against the Blues, suffered an 81-point defeat.

Clarence and Glenorchy both side in the bottom two spots on the 2020 TSL ladder, although it is hard to read too much into it given the early stage of the season. The Roos went down to Lauderdale by 41 points in the opening round, as Jeromey Webberley was the only multiple goalkicker in that contest. They have a number of top young talents in the side, with the likes of AFL Draft top-ager, Oliver Davis and bottom-ager, Sam Banks joining over-ager, Ethan Jackson as part of the Roos young group. The Magpies also suffered a loss to Lauderdale last week, but were much closer, going down by 12 points following a 26-point defeat at the hands of Launceston in Round 1. Aiden Grace is leading the goalkicking with three, one ahead of the only other multiple goalkicker in Adam Roberts, while ex-AFL talent Zac Webster is always a dangerous prospect.

Last year’s upset reigning premiers Clarence will unfurl the flag at home in the opening game of the season against Glenorchy, one of the teams the Roos had to topple on their way to stunning the previously unbeaten Launceston on the biggest day of the year. Now both teams enter 2020 with new hope, but no doubt the Magpies will be keen for revenge after going out in straight sets last year. In the 28-point win to Clarence, Jessie Williams was best on ground booting a goal, while the likes of Natalie Pearce, Grace Mitchell and Melanie Wise all booted multiple goals. Young talents Amy Prokopiec and Netty Garlo also ran around for the Roos. The Magpies had Nietta Lynch and Natalie Daniels slot a couple of majors each, as Brieanna Barwick and Gennaveve Sullivan were impressive despite the defeat.

In the final TSL match, second placed Lauderdale face off against third placed North Hobart in what is anticipated to be the match of the round. North Hobart almost ran over the top of reigning premiers, North Launceston in the opening round, then travelled to Kingborough to knock off Tigers by 10 points. In their first home game of the year, they host the unbeaten Lauderdale side that has taken care of Clarence and Glenorchy in the opening two rounds. This might be a big test for the Bombers however, as those two sides sit in the bottom two currently. Toutai Havea has been on fire for the Bombers, leading the league’s goalkicking with six majors in two games. Tyler Martin is not too far behind him on three, whilst the likes of Adrian Kalcovski and Josh McGuinness are also multiple goalkickers. For the Demons, key position utility Jake Steele has proven valuable up forward with four goals, while Round 2 inclusion Nathan Hardy slotted three last week. Tasmanian AFL Draft hopefuls, Patrick Walker and Jye Menzie both have two goals to their name, while Sam Collins is another name to keep an eye on in the red and blue.

TSL ROUND 3:

Tigers vs. Launceston
Clarence vs. Glenorchy
North Hobart vs. Lauderdale
Bye: North Launceston

TSLW ROUND 2:

Clarence vs. Glenorchy
Tigers vs. Launceston
Bye: North Launceston

TSL/W weekly wrap: Launceston topples rival in both competitions

LAUNCESTON and Lauderdale sit as the only undefeated Tasmanian State League (TSL) sides in the competition, while the Blues’ TSL Women’s team was triumphant in the standalone match against North Launceston.

In the blockbuster top of the table clash, Launceston got up by 19 points to defeat North Launceston for the first time in seven years. The Blues had not defeated the Bombers since August, 2013, and had suffered 18 consecutive losses in that time. Young guns Jared Dakin and Jackson Callow were named best on ground for their respective sides, as we detailed their performances in yesterday’s Player Focus. Callow slotted three goals for the Bombers, while Bradley Cox-Goodyer slotted two, but it was the work of Dakin on opposition playing coach, Taylor Whitford that was the difference. Jake Hinds slotted three majors – with two of them coming in the last couple of minutes of the match to put icing on the sweetest cake.

Lauderdale was made to work for a second consecutive win, but they came from behind to defeat Glenorchy by 12 points at home. The Bombers led at quarter time and half-time, but were ruing inaccuracy in the first half, booting 3.7. The Magpies were not much better with just 1.4 and a goalless second term, but they piled on seven goals to three in the third quarter to race to a nine-point lead. Lauderdale bounced back in the last stanza to kick the final three goals of the game and restrict the Magpies to just another behind down that end in a 9.13 (67) to 8.7 (55) victory. Toutai Havea slotted another three majors, while Haydn Smith and Adrian Kalcovski were named among the Bombers’ best on the day. For the Magpies, Aiden Grace was the sole multiple goalkicker with a couple of snags, while James Webb was his side’s best, along with Josh Arnold.

After narrowly falling short of a huge upset against North Launceston last week, North Hobart got the job done in a successful come-from-behind victory over Tigers. In what was Tigers’ first game for the round, the Kingsborough side started strongly, booting two goals to one in the opening term, and leading by nine points at the first two breaks. North Hobart’s accuracy was deadly however, and the Demons booted five straight goals to 3.3 in the third quarter to draw level, before booting four goals to two in the final term to storm to a 12.3 (75) to 9.11 (65) win in an entertaining contest. Nathan Harvey slotted three majors and was one of five players to boot major goals. Young talents, Jake Steele and Patrick Walker booted two goals apiece, while Troy Cunliffe and Baxter Norton also had a couple of goals apiece and were named the Demons’ best. For Tigers, Luke Graham nailed three majors, as Jarryd Drew and Lachlan Watt were impressive in defeat.

TSL ROUND 2 RESULTS:

Tigers 9.11 (65) defeated by North Hobart 12.3 (75)
Lauderdale 9.13 (67) defeated Glenorchy 8.7 (55)
Launceston 8.12 (60) defeated North Launceston 6.5 (41)
Bye: Clarence

In the only game played for the round in the TSL Women’s competition, Launceston got up over North Launceston courtesy of a three-goal second half. In what was a low-scoring contest, the Bombers managed to keep last year’s minor premiers to just seven behinds in the first half, with positives coming out of the clash despite not scoring. The second half saw the Blues find their kicking boots as Brooke Brown (two goals) and Angela Dickson (one) led the team to a 3.8 (26) to 0.1 (1) victory. AFL Women’s talents, Daria Bannister and Mia King led a strong Launceston outfit, while overage talent Camilla Taylor was also impressive. For the Bombers, Jody Clifford, Zoe Bourne and Ruby Slater all impressed in what was a tough effort against strong opposition.

TSL WOMEN’S ROUND 1 RESULTS:

Launceston 3.8 (26) defeated North Launceston 0.1 (1)

TSL weekly wrap and notes: Round 1 – Reigning premiers win in good weekend for Bombers and Blues

REIGNING premiers North Launceston got off to a winning start in the Tasmanian Football League (TSL), whilst Lauderdale and Launceston also recorded impressive wins in Round 1 of the competition on the weekend.

North Launceston did not have as convincing of a win as some might have thought in the battle between last year’s top and bottom sides, but the Bombers did control the play for the majority of the contest. Booting five goals to two in the opening half and then holding North Hobart goalless in the third term, North Launceston led by as much as 33 points at the final break. To the Demons’ credit, they never stopped trying, coming hard in the final term to boot the final four goals of the game and restrict the Bombers to just one behind, but fell 10 points short, 6.3 (39) to 7.7 (49).

Taylor Whitford booted two goals in a best on ground performance for the Bombers, while Josh Ponting and Braden Van Buuren were also prolific for the reigning premiers. Young gun key forward Jackson Callow was one of six players to snag a major in the victory, while fellow Tasmania Devils talents in Jake Steele and Jye Menzie both kicked multiple goals for the Demons. Hugh Williams was superb for the Demons in defeat, while AFL Academy Allies’ hub member Patrick Walker was also named among the best.

The most impressive performer of week one was Lauderdale who completely dominated Clarence in the first half to set up a memorable 41-point win. The Bombers booted two goals to zero in the opening term, then piled on five straight goals to 1.1 and opened up a 38-point half-time lead. The Roos booted the only two goals of the third term to give their supporters some hope with a 31-point deficit, but a four goals to two final term in favour of Lauderdale snuffed out any hope of a comeback in the 11.10 (76) to 5.5 (35) victory.

Toutai Havea booted three majors to lead the goalkicking stakes after Round 1, but he was far from alone in the red and black, as Jake Dance, Alex Hevey and Tyler Martin all snagged multiple majors. Will Poland was named best-on in the win, while Josh McGuinness and Haydn Smith were also busy. For the Roos, Jarrod Harper stepped up to be best-on for his side, while AFL Academy hub member Oliver Davis was also strong in the inside along with bottom-age talent Sam Banks, and over-age talent Ethan Jackson. Jeromey Webberley was the sole multiple goal kicker for Clarence with two.

In the third game of the round, an inaccurate Launceston kicked away in the final term to secure a 26-point win over Glenorchy. The Blues and Magpies were neck and neck for the most part in the first half, with the Blues’ six extra behinds the difference at half-time. Kicking the only goal of the third term, Launceston kept the Magpies scoreless to extend the lead out to 15, then booted the only two goals of the last quarter to win, 7.13 (55) to 4.5 (29).

Brodie Palfreyman was the sole multiple goal kicker for the game, snagging two for the winners. Jake Smith and Jamieson House were named among the best for the Blues, while a number of young talents such as Jared Dakin ran out for Launceston. Glenorchy had four individual goalkickers including the two named in the best in Adam Roberts and Mitchell Rainbird while James Deegan and Brady Williams were also named among the Magpies’ best.

ROUND 1 RESULTS:

Glenorchy 4.5 (29) defeated by Launceston 7.13 (55)
Lauderdale 11.10 (76) defeated Clarence 5.5 (35)
North Launceston 7.7 (49) defeated North Hobart 6.3 (39)

Next week sees Tigers join the competition after a Round 1 bye to face off against North Hobart in what looms to be an interesting matchup. The match of the round should be the Battle of Launceston when the Blues face the Bombers, while in the other game Lauderdale hosts Glenorchy. Clarence has the the bye in Round 2 to try and work on a few things following the Round 1 defeat.

SCOUTING NOTES ON SOME OF THE YOUNG ACADEMY TALENTS:

Jackson Callow (North Launceston)

Another typical Callow performance where he marked everything in sight and when he is on the lead you can bank on him taking the mark with his hands sticking to the ball like glue. He was a great target all day, he kicked only the one goal but had more opportunities to have a bigger day on the scoreboard so was still dangerous. 

Sam Collins  (North Hobart)

Collins played like he does every week, and he relished the opportunity to play against experienced hardened bodies where his contested game and defensive efforts came to the fold. Collins looked great early showing good intent at the ball and the man with some strong tackles and spoils, he also showed great composure and played with more confidence than even some of the senior players.

Patrick Walker (North Hobart)

Walker looked classy on the wing winning plenty of the ball and using it well by foot often hitting long accurate passes and gave a good mix to his side. Walker mostly played down back last year but looks just as comfortable up the ground and it was an impressive senior debut. 

Oliver Davis (Clarence)

Davis was given reigns to play in the midfield despite being a younger and lighter player at senior level but more than held his own with his timing at stoppages and willingness to win the hard ball and get the ball moving forward. Not a massive game stats wise but will improve at the level with more time. 

Sam Banks (Clarence)

Banks is Tasmania’s leading prospect for the 2021 draft and already playing senior football for Clarence just goes to show why, Banks looks bigger this time around and certainly didn’t look out of his depth at the level. Banks played on the wing and positioned himself well around the ground, he managed to sneak forward and kick a nice set shot goal.

2020 AFL Draft Positional Analysis: Outside Midfielders

DASHING, daring outside midfielders are becoming increasingly important amid the current trend of contested, scrum-like styles of play, able to break the lines and change the course of games in a flash. Among this year’s crop lies a versatile bunch of outside types who can double in different positions, and while not all of them currently have the opportunity to show their worth on the field, exposed form and long preseasons for most allow for a window into how the current stocks stack up.

In ramping up our 2020 AFL Draft analysis, Draft Central continues its line-by-line positional breakdowns, moving on to the best outside midfielders. The following list features pocket profiles of top-age (2002-born) prospects who are part of their respective AFL Academy hubs, while also touching on some names who missed out last year, or may feature on another list.

Without further ado, get to know some of the premier outside midfielders who are eligible to be drafted in 2020.

Note: The list is ordered alphabetically, not by any form of ranking.

Jake Bowey
Sandringham Dragons/Vic Metro
174cm | 66kg

Starting small, Bowey kicks off this list as one of the prospects who may sneak into top 20 calculations on draft boards, with plenty of desirable attributes to outweigh his 174cm/66kg frame. The Sandringham Dragons product is hard at it, able to take the ball cleanly and burst through congestion with his high-level speed and agility. He featured in 16 NAB League games last year stationed on his customary wing position, but is quite apt forward of centre and could even utilise his sharp foot skills off half-back.

>> Q&A
>> Marquee Matchup

Jack Carroll
East Fremantle/Western Australia
188cm | 79kg

Another in the line of East Fremantle Under 18 prospects is Carroll, who comes in at a good size to compete across a range of positions. The West Australian’s precision kicking makes him damaging on the outside, while courage in the air and intercept marking prowess make him a half-back option. The 188cm prospect can also roll through midfield, but has quality traits on the outer and will more likely find a spot there should state representative duties come calling.

Saxon Crozier
Brisbane Lions Academy/Allies
189cm | 80kg

Crozier has been one of Queensland’s most highly touted 2020 prospects for a while now, and has cut his teeth as an out-and-out outside midfielder thus far. The tall, rangy Brisbane Academy product has filled out of late and has eyes on securing an inside role, but has arguably shown his best form to date on the wing. Crozier’s running capacity and ability to hurt the opposition when given time and space suit the outside role, and he has also adapted his skills to run off flanks at either end of the ground. He will be a leader among the talented Brisbane crop, and should prove a handy addition to the Allies squad.

>> Q&A

Connor Downie
Eastern Ranges/Vic Metro
185cm | 83kg

The Hawthorn Next Generation Academy (NGA) candidate may have eyes on more minutes on the inside, and boasts the ideal size for it, but is so good running on the outer that we simply had to include him in this list. Downie is set to skipper the Eastern Ranges side which lost in last year’s NAB League decider, with the experience of 14 games and a Vic Metro Under 18 outing under his belt. While he is not overwhelmingly quick, Downie loves to get the ball moving and finishes his line-breaking runs with penetrating left-foot bombs. His skills can be adapted to a half-back role, and he is no stranger to finding the big sticks, either.

>> Q&A
>> Draft Watch
>> Marquee Matchup

Errol Gulden
Sydney Swans Academy/Allies
172cm | 68kg

Search the definition for pocket rocket and a picture of Gulden is what you are likely to find. The nippy Swans Academy hopeful does not let his size get in the way of making a big impact; as his smarts, agility, and ability to chain possessions allow him to carve up the opposition on the outside. While he could also be considered a small or half-forward, Gulden is just as capable of wreaking havoc from the wing and enjoys getting into space. He won the Under 16 Division 2 MVP in 2018, appeared four times for the Allies as a bottom-ager, and has already played senior footy. Look out.

>> Draft Watch
>> Marquee Matchup

Brodie Lake
Peel Thunder/NT Thunder Academy/Allies
186cm | 70kg

One of the Northern Territory’s brightest draft prospects this year is Lake, a tall midfielder who boasts great versatility and running power. He has twice featured in the Thunder’s Under 16 squad, taking out last year’s MVP award for his service through midfield and in defence. Lake has also plied his trade for Peel Thunder and at senior level for Southern Districts in the Northern Territory Football League (NTFL), lauded for his coachability, skills, and work rate. He will be one to keep an eye out for come the national carnival, and will be eligible to be taken by Gold Coast given its alignment to the Darwin academy zone.

Carter Michael
Brisbane Lions Academy/Allies
188cm | 74kg

A second Queenslander on this list, Michael may well find himself lined up on the opposite wing to fellow Brisbane Academy product, Crozier when it comes time to run out for the Allies. The 188cm prospect is a silky mover through traffic who boasts a penetrating left foot kick, and he may well be one to juggle time between inside and outside roles throughout the year, depending on which team he represents. He already has experience on the inside for the Lions at Under 18 level and is a leader among that group, but may be pushed out to the wing for the Allies where he can make an impact with his sharp decision making.

>> Q&A

Tom Powell
Sturt/South Australia
180cm | 73kg

Powell made an immediate impact upon his return to SANFL Under 18s action last week, collecting 34 disposals in Sturt’s Round 1 win over Central District. The speedy midfielder actually has quite a nice balance of traits given his mix of athleticism and ball winning ability, but may find his way into the South Australian lineup on the outside where his explosive burst will come in handy. It is pleasing to see Powell back on the park after an unlucky run with injuries in 2019, and he should quickly rise in stocks should his form persist.

>> Q&A

Taj Schofield
WWT Eagles/South Australia
178cm | 72kg

The son of Port Adelaide premiership player, Jarrad, Schofield is another South Australian prospect to have battled injury as a bottom-ager, but he is primed to make an impact in 2020. Power fans will be keeping a close eye on the 2020 father-son candidate, who is incredibly classy on the outside with eye-catching agility and short-range kicking. Schofield has been working on his inside craft, too, and featured among the Eagles’ Under 18 centre bounce quartet in Round 1 after starting up forward. The small prospect was named in the 2018 Under 16 All Australian side, where he represented Western Australia before making the move to SA.

>> Q&A
>> Draft Watch

OTHERS TO CONSIDER

There are plenty of other prospects who could fit into the outside midfielder category, but are more effective in other roles from out perspective. Among them, the elite trio of Will Phillips, Tanner Bruhn, and Braeden Campbell are all players we deem to be of the balanced midfielder variety, along with the likes of Finlay Macrae and Bailey Chamberlain. Corey Durdin is one who would be considered more of an inside type, and we see him as a small forward in the long run in any case.

Speaking of, Sam Conforti will make the same transition for Bendigo, while West Australian pair Ira Jetta and Joel Western can roll through multiple positions, including on the outside, but look more suited to flank or pocket roles. Glenelg small Cooper Horsnell also has eyes on a role further afield, but remains in the small forward category.

There are a raft of defenders who move up the ground well and may, in future, be considered outside midfielders. NAB Leaguers Charlie Byrne and Nick Stevens have the ability to roll further afield, but seem to prefer their half-back posts, while Tasmanian academy pair Sam Collins and Patrick Walker are in a similar boat. Queenslander Tahj Abberley is one who can play just about anywhere but has been billed as a small defender, and we like Ty Sears as a running half-back, too.

In the utility category comes the likes of Zac Dumesny and Campbell Edwardes. Dumesny made his SANFL League debut in 2020 and can operate on the wing or up forward, but looks like developing into a third tall in defence. Edwardes is as versatile as they come and is yet to lock down a specific role despite looking comfortable on the outside.

Of course, anyone else we may have missed could also appear in our previous analysis on inside midfielders.

Positional Analysis: Inside MidfieldersKey Position Forwards

>> CATCH UP ON OUR OTHER SERIES

Squad Predictions:
Allies
South Australia
Vic Country
Vic Metro
Western Australia

Features
AFL Draft Watch

Preseason Testing Analysis:
Jumps
Speed
Agility
Endurance

Classic Contests: Bianco’s Chargers survive Devils scare

IF you are missing footy like we are, then let us somewhat salvage that with a look back in a new series of Classic Contests. In today’s contest we look at one of the would-have-been Round 14 clashes in the NAB League this year between the Oakleigh Chargers and Tasmania Devils. In this edition, we wind the clock back just one year to when the two sides met in Tasmania’s maiden full-time campaign.

2019 NAB League, Round 6
Saturday May 4, 11:30am
North Hobart Oval

TASMANIA DEVILS 3.0 | 5.2 | 6.5 | 8.7 (55)
OAKLEIGH CHARGERS 3.4 | 3.5 | 6.6 | 8.8 (56)

Goals:

Tasmania: R. Mansell 2, W. Harper 2, M. McGuinness, S. Banks, B. Gordon, J. Callow
Oakleigh:
T. Lovell 4, T. Graham, L. Westwood, H. Mundy, A. Tassell

Best:

Tasmania: H. Ireland, R. Mansell, O. Davis, P. Walker, L. Viney, I. Chugg
Oakleigh:
T. Bianco, J. Woodfull, J. May, H. Mastras, L. Westwood, S. Seach

Draftees in action:

Tasmania: Matthew McGuinness 
Oakleigh:
Trent Bianco

Oakleigh may have been the much higher fancied side in 2019 when compared to incoming full-time side, Tasmania, but the two regions sat level on points coming into their Round 6 NAB League clash. The Chargers got up in Rounds 1 and 2, but were starting to feel the effects of school and representative football commitments having suffered three-straight losses. A second interstate trip in three weeks would hardly help, with Tasmania gaining the benefit of another home game to help buoy its 2-2 record. The Devils had notched consecutive wins after their Round 2 debuts, but lost to Western in Round 5.

Co-captain Trent Bianco would taking the reigns solo as the sole eventual draftee in Oakleigh’s side to make the trip, while North Melbourne rookie Matt McGuinness was Tasmania’s lone AFL product afield with Mitchell O’Neill absent. In a boost to the Devils’ lineup, they would boast bottom-aged Allies hub members Oliver Davis, Sam Collins, and Jackson Callow, along with Patrick Walker and leading 2021 hopeful, Sam Banks.

As the action got underway at North Hobart Oval, the Victorians were unable to take full advantage of starting at the scoring end, taking a four-point lead into the first change as their four superior scoring shots all ended in behinds. Tasmania, blessed with kicking boots, showed them the way in the second term, keeping the Chargers goalless while adding two majors to snatch a nine-point buffer heading into half time.

One of the outstanding traits of Oakleigh’s side in 2019 was it was able to score quickly, and signs began to look ominous as the Chargers booted three goals within the first 11 minutes of the third term. The Devils were able to mount somewhat of a comeback, but some inaccurate kicking of their own late in the piece would prove costly. A grandstand finish was set up with just one point separating the sides heading into the final term, and the two teams did not disappoint.

Four lead changes would occur, with Banks giving Tasmania the jump early, only to see Thomas Lovell edge Oakleigh back in front twice with his third and fourth goals. Jye Menzie‘s shy at goal with under three minutes left on the clock would prove Tasmania’s last chance at victory, as Oakleigh broke the hearts of home fans and travelled back to the mainland with four points.

Lovell came up clutch with his four goals making up almost half of Oakleigh’s tally, but it was Bianco who proved the standout of the day. The Collingwood draftee was a cut above the rest, racking up a monster 42 disposals in what was a complete performance, putting him 14 touches ahead of the next-best ball winner – Josh May, 28 disposals. Fraser Elliot was another Charger to impress from midfield, while Davis (21 disposals) was Tasmania’s leading ball winner, and the pairing of Will Harper and Rhyan Mansell combined for four goals.

The Devils would go on to add just two more wins to their tally in 2019, putting up a valiant effort in Wildcard Round to lose by only six points to Calder. Oakleigh finished the regular season in third at 11-4, and went on to win the NAB League premiership on the back of an unstoppable late-season run. Six Chargers, including Bianco were drafted. Most famously, the region boasted both of the first two picks in the 2019 draft as Matt Rowell and Noah Anderson headed to the Gold Coast SUNS.

Squad predictions: 2020 Allies Under 18s

THE annual Under 18 National Championships may be the only chance we get to catch a glimpse of the class of 2020 before draft day, with carnival likely to take place in October. In the meantime, Draft Central takes a look at how each regional squad may line up should the championships come around, but with a few stipulations in place. We began with our Vic Metro, Vic Country, South Australian, and West Australian squad predictions, and today we take a look at the potential Allies line-up.

GUIDELINES:

  • Top-agers (2002-born) have been prioritised due to the limited season and exposure
  • Of those, AFL Academy Hub members also gain priority for the starting squad
  • The inclusion of bottom-agers (2003-born) in the hub, and top-agers outside it is limited
  • 19-year-old inclusions are also limited, having already staked their claims in previous years

A lot may change between now and when the squad will be announced, and it should be noted that players with known long-term injuries will not be picked here. Of course, the sides may vary greatly as players look to shift and develop in different positions, but each member has been selected based on the roles they have previously played. Given only previous form, preseason testing and scratch matches are what we have to go off, bolters are also difficult to gauge at this point.

Players named as depth outside of the initial squad below are inevitably options who will rotate through the side, and it is impossible to fit all the options within a list of 22. But without further ado, let’s get stuck into the fifth and final squad prediction, with the Allies’ talent broken down line-by-line. The Allies squad is made up of talent from NSW/ACT, Queensland, Tasmania, and the Northern Territory.

DEFENCE

FB – Brodie Lake (NT Thunder/Peel), Jack Johnston (Gold Coast), Patrick Walker (Tasmania)
HB – Charlie Byrne (Murray), Ryan Pickering (Gold Coast), Sam Collins (Tasmania)

Two Gold Coast Suns Academy members make up the heart of our proposed Allies defence, with genuine talls Jack Johnston (195cm) and Ryan Pickering (199cm) slotting into key position posts. The additions of Brodie Lake and Sam Collins contribute even further to the height and marking power of the defence, with Collins’ intercept and rebound qualities also valuable assets.

Collins’ fellow Tasmanian Patrick Walker should provide similarly astute ball use from defence at a shorter range, while Murray product Charlie Byrne also likes to push further afield and deal damage by foot. The back six should have no trouble competing aerially on the defensive side, while being able to yield an attacking threat on the turnover.


MIDFIELD

C – Saxon Crozier (Brisbane), Oliver Davis (Tasmania), Carter Michael (Brisbane)
FOL – Thomas Hofert (Gold Coast), Alex Davies (Gold Coast), Braeden Campbell (Sydney)

Queenslanders take up four of the six midfield spots in our Allies side, with Brisbane Lions Academy members Saxon Crozier and Carter Michael starting on either wing, while 201cm ruck Thomas Hofert has been tasked with tapping down to Gold Coast Academy teammate Alex Davies at the centre bounces.

There is plenty of grunt in the engine room trio of Davies, Braeden Campbell, and Oliver Davis; with Davies the tallest of the lot (191cm) as that pure big-bodied type, while Davis (182cm) is another extractor who comes in at a similar build to the speedy and versatile Campbell (180cm).

The likes of Crozier and Michael may fancy a run through the middle but seem well suited to the outside, with a number of flankers and depth options in our squad also able to pitch in. Still, we feel this is the best mix, and one which gives the Allies a great chance to compete strongly in the area in which each contest begins.


FORWARD

HF – Errol Gulden (Sydney), Josh Green (GWS), Joel Jeffrey (NT Thunder)
FF – Marco Rossmann (Sydney), Jackson Callow (Tasmania), Blake Coleman (Brisbane)

In a similar vein to the defensive mix, this forward six provides good versatility and some great marking power. Jackson Callow is the centrepiece at full forward, a physical key position type who is near-unstoppable with his contested marking, and may well take on ruck duties inside forward 50. Josh Green, brother of GWS draftee Tom, is a 192cm utility who can play up either end. He slots in at centre half-forward for now on account of his aerial ability.

The diminutive but brilliant Errol Gulden comes in on a forward flank but will have eyes on moving up to a wing, with fellow Swans Academy product Marco Rossmann a solid medium type who may also run through the midfield. In the opposite flank to Rossmann is exciting forward Blake Coleman, who along with Northern Territory prospect Joel Jeffrey, provides clean hands and a terrific goal sense. With silver service likely to come from a strong midfield core, this forward mix could do some damage at the national carnival when on song.


INTERCHANGE

INT – Marc Sheather (Sydney), Jared Dakin (Tasmania), Tahj Abberley (Brisbane), Maurice Rioli Jnr (NT Thunder/Oakleigh)

This interchange group is, well, incredibly interchangeable with the group of depth players listed below, but all bring something different to the side. Jared Dakin makes the cut as the only over-ager in the squad given he garnered interest at last year’s draft, and he’ll provide a good ball winning boost.

Tahj Abberley and Maurice Rioli Jnr add some x-factor and smarts at ground level as part of the rotational group. Abberley is likely to play as a small defender but is just as capable up forward or through midfield, while Rioli could well be the genuine small forward that the side is missing. Rounding out the chosen 22 is Marc Sheather, another versatile medium type who can play well above his size at either end given his athleticism.


SQUAD DEPTH

There remains a decent crop of top-agers who narrowly missed the cut, and some bottom-aged talent which will inevitably squeeze into the team minus any stipulations. Among the most unlucky to miss were AFL Academy hub members Rhys Nicholls and Aidan Fyfe, who could both slot in as half-backs or outside types. Kye Pfrengle is another defensive option who will get a look-in, while Jack Briskey and Jack Driscoll are taller types who should also rotate through the same line. Meanwhile, Tyrrell Lui and Ryan Eyers are prospects who may also be thereabouts.

In terms of top-agers outside of the AFL Academy intake, Tasmania’s Isaac Chugg is a terrific athlete, while Devils teammates Will Harper and Jye Menzie are well known to selectors. Sydney’s Pierce Roseby is a tough small who thrived in NSW/ACT colours, as did Max Pescud in the Maroon of Queensland.

Moving on to over-agers, and Tasmanian over-ager Hamish Allan would help the ruck stocks at 206cm, with GIANT-turned-Knight Liam Delahunty another tall who remains among the Under 18 ranks. In terms of Queensland-based 19-year-olds, the likes of forward movers Bruce Reville, Josh Gore, and Hewago Paul Oea have already shown plenty of promise.

Finally, an exciting group of bottom-aged talent is set to cause some selection headaches, lead by Tasmanian gun Sam Banks. He, and Tasmanian teammate Baynen Lowe impressed at Under 16 level enough to warrant NAB League selection in 2019. Queensland Under 16 MVP Austin Harris will also push his case as a small defender, while GIANTS Academy members Sam Stening and Josh Fahey are hard to deny, as is big Queensland forward Noah McFadyen.

>> READ UP ON THE 2020 ALLIES U18s:

Brisbane Lions Academy
Gold Coast SUNS Academy
GWS GIANTS Academy
Sydney Swans Academy
Tasmania Devils

AFL Draft Watch:

Tahj Abberley
Jackson Callow
Braeden Campbell
Oliver Davis
Errol Gulden

Marquee Matchups:

Jackson Callow vs. Cam Fleeton
Braeden Campbell vs. Corey Durdin
Alex Davies vs. Reef McInnes
Errol Gulden vs. Jake Bowey

Positional Analysis:

Key Forwards

>> 2020 UNDER 18 SQUAD PREDICTIONS:

South Australia
Vic Country
Vic Metro
Western Australia