By ZAC MILBANK
There’s always plenty to discuss with Torrens University SA U18 coach Tony Bamford at the end of an AFL National Championships campaign.
That’s why the latest edition of Checkside Chats is a must listen as the Croweaters’ mentor provides his review of the campaign while detailing his thoughts on the ones to watch heading into this year’s AFL Draft.
And then there is the bevy of ”under-age” tyros – such as Tyler Welsh and Sid Draper – who performed above their years in this year’s carnival, which has already sparked excitement about the 2024 campaign.
Describing Welsh as a ”big cuddly teddy bear”, Bamford is equally excited about silky midfielder Draper, who has been named as the Torrens University SA U18 team’s MVP after his consistent display on the big stage.
Draper, who made his Hostplus SANFL League debut with South Adelaide in Round 12, was named in SA’s best players in each of the team’s four outings for the Championships.
The well-spoken 17-year-old is also a special guest in this edition of Checkside Chats, as he details the excitement of playing his debut game against the Roosters at Flinders University Stadium.
Draper was delivered the news via a live video message from his older brother and former Panther Arlo – currently on Collingwood’s AFL list – in front of the senior playing group.
He’s not so certain he will follow Arlo into delivering Domino’s pizzas as he juggles his Year 11 study at Cardijn College with his increasing footy commitments.
Interested in sports psychology and nutrition, Draper is hopeful of stringing together more League games with South as he primes himself for his draft year in 2024.
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