Tag: Travis Varcoe

Draft Central All-Star Teams: Central District

CENTRAL District has bred some of the most talented Indigenous players to ever grace the field over the years, from Swans legend Michael O’Loughlin to Magarey Medal-winning icon Gilbert McAdam. With more names such as the legendary John Platten to the modern day hero of Shannon Hurn, there is plenty of talent across the field. In fact, Hurn was the player voted by you, the fans as Central District’s Best Player of All-Time. He therefore earned the captaincy nod ahead of Travis Varcoe, who finished runner-up in our 16-man draw.

THE TEAM:

The Bulldogs have blooded 14 players to have played more than AFL 100 games, including six who managed in excess of 200 matches. The Central Districts team looks strong across the board, with a rugged, stingy backline complimented by a dangerous forward line headlined by a trio of key forwards. The midfield is perhaps the weaker of the three lines, but still features a Brownlow medalist. The ‘Dogs are one of South Australia’s most successful clubs and their best 24 is littered with talent.

DEFENCE:

The Central Districts backline has a strong Western Australian flavour, led across half-back by Eagles premiership skipper and Barossa Valley local Shannon Hurn. With 166 games under his belt, fellow Eagle defender Sam Butler was an obvious selection as a lockdown backman.

Cross-town rivals Fremantle are also represented in the Bulldogs side, in the form of rebounding defender Lee Spurr. A mature-aged rookie selection in 2011, the versatile Spurr played 120 games with the Dockers across seven seasons.

With limited key defensive prospects, the strongly-built Nathan Grima was a sure bet to feature at full back in the ‘Dogs best 24, having played 88 AFL matches with North Melbourne (86 games) and Essendon (2).

Luke McCabe‘s 138 games with Hawthorn ensured he featured in the side, whilst Anthony Ingerson assumes the role across centre-half-back, despite starting as a forward with Adelaide.

MIDFIELD:

The midfield is headlined by South Australian football icon and Hawthorn great John Platten. The 1987 Brownlow Medalist is regarded as one of the best rovers the game has seen. With his trademark locks, Platten kicked 228 goals, won two best and forest’s, was a five-time All-Australian and won four premierships during his time with the Hawks.

The strongly-built Stuart Cochrane, who played 104 games at AFL level with Port Adelaide and North Melbourne, and versatile Brad Symes make up for Platten’s smaller frame, adding plenty of size to the ‘Dogs on-ball brigade.

Journeyman big-man Jonathan Giles was the logical ruckman, having played 63 games across four AFL clubs. Cat-turned-Pie Travis Varcoe and emerging Crow Wayne Milera provide the team with a plethora of speed and class from the wings whilst also possessing the ability to rotate through the forward line. Overall its a strong midfield, with a nice balance of in-and-under contested-ball winners complimented by flashy, outside ‘finishers’.

FORWARD:

The forward line is perhaps the strongest line in the Bulldogs side, headlined by full-forward Michael O’Loughlin. ‘Micky-O’ is one of the most iconic Swans of the modern era, having kicked 521 goals in 303 games in the red and white. A dual All-Australian, best and fairest winner, premiership player and member of the Indigenous team of the century, O’Loughlin was the first name slotted into the Bulldogs side.

He is accompanied in the pockets by current coach of the Gold Coast Suns Stuart Dew. Clever around goal with a booming left foot kick, Dew kicked 265 goals in 206 games with Hawthorn and Port Adelaide, winning flags with both clubs.

Power veteran Justin Westhoff is renowned for his lanky frame, iconic beard and outstanding athleticism which allows him to play almost anywhere on the park. The 268-gamer earns a spot at centre-half-forward in the ‘Dogs best 24, but could easily rotate with Milera or Varcoe when desired.

The great thing with these key forwards is that they possess contrasting styles and thus provide a nice balance. Crows fans will no-doubt remember 1998 premiership hero Peter Vardy, who adds a touch of magic to the Bulldogs offence.

Derek Kickett was selected on the opposite flank, having booted 179 goals in 152 matches with Essendon, North Melbourne and Sydney. Gilbert McAdam is perhaps best known in South Australia for winning the 1989 Magerey Medal, but his 111 games and 89 goals at AFL level made him a clear-cut choice at half-forward.

DEPTH:

The Bulldogs have a couple of very handy players on the pine, who could very easily have cracked an on-field position in many teams across the nation. Despite his injury woes, Daniel Menzel kept scoreboard operators busy during his 73 games at the Cats and further adds to an already-deadly forward line.

Central’s great and inaugural Crow Scott Lee provides a handy bench option either as a lockdown back pocket or strongly-built on-baller. Former-Magpie Ben Kinnear and ruckman Richard Cousins add much needed key position depth in a team lacking some height.

Martin McKinnon, the Crows’ first ever draft pick, provides some x-factor to the side with an ability to play either tall or small at 189cm. The cousin of Michael O’Loughlin, Eddie Sansbury rounds off the side, providing further depth on-ball and up forward.

Central District Bulldogs Player of the AFL Era: Vote for yours via our Instagram

CENTRAL District Bulldogs 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 Calder Cannons All-Star voting was completed yesterday with Dane Swan announced as the winner and captain of the Cannons’ side. The Bulldogs have helped develop a number of legends both past and present of the modern era, and none more so than Hawthorn premiership star, John Platten and the electric, Michael O’Loughlin. Central District have also had a number of more recent talents pop up including West Coast premiership skipper, Shannon Hurn and the ultimate utility in Port Adelaide’s Justin Westhoff. Throw in performers who have stepped up on the big stage such as Stuart Dew and Travis Varcoe also in the Bulldogs’ top 16 that have gone into the vote.

The voting will run over the next four days starting today, with the winner to be decided by Monday night (unless extra time and the full 24 hours is needed in the final vote). For West Australian fans, you will have your first club coming up later in the week with Claremont being the next club involved in the voting process. All eligible players were selected thanks to the Draft Guru site.

VFL weekly wrap: Bombers suffer big first loss

RICHMOND occupies top spot on the Victorian Football League (VFL) ladder following Round 6, as Essendon dropped their first match of the season, while North Melbourne picked up their first win.

Essendon 8.7 (55) defeated by Casey 15.6 (96)

The undefeated Bombers entered their clash with the Demons on a high, with a huge percentage and a win expected against a Casey side who only had one victory. It was the Demons, however, who led from the first bounce to the final siren to take home the four points. The only positive for Essendon was the final term, where they booted five goals to four. Brayden Preuss dominated for the away side with 40 hitouts and two goals while Tim Smith slammed home four, and Mitch White three. Dylan Clarke was best for the Bombers with 28 disposals.

Port Melbourne 16.9 (105) defeated Werribee 14.5 (89)

The Borough continued their winning streak with a win over the Tigers at home. Port lead by as much as 50 points halfway through the second term, but Werribee did well to turn the contest into a competitive one despite ultimately going down. Tom Gribble had 27 disposals while Harvey Hooper notched up 25 and a goal. Campbell Walker and Matthew Munro kicked three goals each, as Blake Pearson slotted four.

Box Hill 12.12 (84) drew Foostcray 12.12 (84)

The lead for either side never extended beyond three goals as the Hawks and Bulldogs recorded the first draw of the season at the MCG. Dropped former Hawthorn captain Jarryd Roughead excelled, kicking five goals, and famously coaching Bulldog Reuben William on-field. Tory Dickson and Kyle Dunkley kicked three each for the Dogs. Bailey Williams continued his push for an AFL berth with 31 disposals.

Collingwood 8.7 (56) defeated by Sandringham 7.14 (56)

Sandringham crawled over the line at Victoria Park to defeat the Magpies. While the margin was never more than 19 points, the Zebras led all day until three early final quarter goals put Collingwood in front by 5 points. Sandy then got six consecutive points through a combination of rushed behinds and inaccurate kicking to register the victory. Alex Woodward did what he does with 39 disposals, while Hunter Clark had the second most touches on the ground with 28. Travis Varcoe and Sam Rowe each kicked two goals.

Frankston 7.8 (50) defeated by Richmond 19.10 (124)

Frankston remains the only team in the VFL without a win after their loss to Richmond at home. The Dolphins started brightly, leading early in the first term, but the class of the Tigers prevailed. Patty Naish kicked four goals and had 29 disposals as Mabior Chol slotted three goals. Mav Weller had 27 touches while Josh Newman was immense for the Dolphins once again, with 25 disposals and a goal.

North Melbourne 17.11 (113) defeated Geelong 14.9 (93)

North Melbourne put together a superb final quarter to overrun Geelong and record their first win of the season. While the Cats led at every break, North had the lead at one stage of every term, and finally unleashed in the last, kicking 6 goals to 2. Aaron Hall responded to his VFL demotion with 29 disposals and two goals while Lachie Fogarty was impressive for the Cats with 27 disposals and a goal. Nathan Hrovat was the star of the show however, booting six goals, including the one that gave the Kangaroos the lead in the final quarter.

Bye – Coburg, Williamstown, Northern Blues

Pic: VFL.com.au

Fantastic Five: Memorable moments from the weekend

INDIVIDUAL and team success, and some emotional moments highlighted what was a huge round of finals football, both on and off the field.

Two Seagulls and a Tiger taste success

It was the Victorian Football League (VFL)’s night of nights, and it had a definitive Williamstown flavour. Former Murray Bushrangers midfielder, now Seagull, Michael Gibbons shared the J.J Liston Medal with Richmond’s Anthony Miles, while fellow Seagull, Jess Duffin took out the newly named Lambert-Pearce medal for the VFL Women’s best and fairest award. Miles did his chances of finding a new AFL home no harm with a top season, while Gibbons has been talked up as a potential draft choice as one of the state leaguers that bottom clubs will have priority access to prior to draft day.

Dandenong, Oakleigh emerge as TAC Cup titans

Dandenong Stingrays and Oakleigh Chargers are sizing each other up from opposite sides of the finals draw after smashing their respective opponents by triple figures across the weekend. The Stingrays belted the Greater Western Victoria (GWV) Rebels by 110 points on Saturday, before the Chargers went 10 points better with a 20-goal victory over Western Jets. The two sides face off against Sandringham Dragons and Gippsland Power respectively who are worthy preliminary finalists, but the pair go in as strong favourites considering their remarkable form, particularly the Chargers who have a two-game accumulative winning margin of 210 points.

Hawks through, Cats to face Pies

Ladder positions mean very little when it comes to finals and that proved true on the weekend in the VFL Women’s competition. The second placed Hawks upset the top-of-the-table Magpies, while Geelong toppled pre-season premiership favourite Northern Territory (NT) Thunder. Now with no turning back, Collingwood will have to knock off Geelong to earn the right at another crack at the Hawks, and avoid the dreaded straight-sets exit.

Demon fans celebrate

It has been a long time between drinks – 12 years to be exact – but the Demons fans burst into jubilation when their side toppled Geelong with relentless pressure and a four-quarter effort. They booted five goals to zero in the opening term and never let-up to keep the Cats at arms-length, frustrating the likes of Joel Selwood into giving away free kicks on a night that the Geelong faithful would rather forget. But for the long-suffering Demons fans, it was the monkey off the back and they have even started booking plane tickets to Perth for the following week!

Travis Varcoe stands tall

Not many could even imagine what Collingwood’s Travis Varcoe has had to endure the past fortnight following the tragic passing of his sister, Maggie. But such is the bond at football clubs, Varcoe chose to play in the first final over in Perth and was his sister was honoured by a minute’s silence prior to the National Anthem. Then, a moment that could not have been better even if it had been scripted. The exciting speedster won the ball at half-forward, sprinted inside 50 and nailed a running goal from the boundary line. His teammates came from everywhere and no doubt the whole football world was behind him at that moment.