As the AFL Draft edges on closer on Wednesday December 9, SANFL’s Zac Milbank has selected his favourite highlight reels of South Australia’s budding young stars.
Kicking off with the forwards striving for selection, check out the best vision of the Croweaters ahead of the annual national selection meeting which captivates fans of all clubs across Australia.
Zac Says – It was a tough call considering Thilthorpe booted a beauty in Round 2 this year off his left foot but it’s hard to go past this checkside finish from the boundary line in 2019. In just his sixth League game as a 17-year-old, the exciting tall forward managed to curl through a set shot from a tough angle. An incredibly challenging skill to master, let along for someone standing at 201cm.
Zac Says – South Adelaide’s surging late bolter produced a memorable finish in the Round 8 U18 Torrens University Cup game against the Eagles. Showing good judgement in terms of reading the flight of the ball, Cook adjusts his body position before deliberately waiting until the last second to soccer the ball out of mid air from the boundary line. A quality finish.
Zac Says – Newchurch knows where the goals are but this passage of play captures how evasive he can be with little effort. Hemmed in on the boundary line, the Crows’ Next Generation prospect manages to avoid being tackled before making the team first option to centre the ball into the corridor. Excellent poise.
Zac Says – Rowe put on a masterclass in the Preliminary Final, booting five goals to be the most damaging player on the ground. His successful shots on goal had a bit of everything, a 50m set shot, a left foot snap and a wonderfully-timed bursting through the pack for a handball receive. But the mature-age prospect saved his best to last when he intelligently turned his body to gather the ugly-bouncing ball before finishing on the run from 40m.
Zac Says – He’s no certainty to be drafted but Fahey-Sparks gave a glimpse into why he suddenly landed on the AFL recruiting radar in Round 7 this year. Despite standing at 196cm, the 22-year-old displayed tremendous mobility against North at Prospect. After pouncing on the loose ball, having started behind his direct opponent, the tall forward/ruck showed off his speed before producing a stunning checkside goal along the ground.
Zac Says – It’s fair to say Beau McCreery won’t forget his first League game in a hurry. Kicking the final two goals of the game to push the Panthers ahead deep into time-on of the final term, the 19-year-old saved his best to last. Despite initially being behind three Eagles defenders and teammate Sam Overall, McCreery sped past everyone to run onto the loose ball and kick truly in the 25th minute.
Zac Says – The Northern Territorian lined up with Central District for seven matches and he certainly caught the eye with his athleticism and skill. Lining up in the NAB AFL All-Stars match, Lake kicked an outstanding checkside set shot from the pocket at Thebarton Oval to underline his natural talent.