Powerade Breakthrough Player – Karl Finlay

Sponsored by Powerade


North Adelaide’s Karl Finlay was widely considered the most unlucky South Australian not to be chosen in last year’s AFL Draft period.

But the Roosters’ key defender has been quick to cast aside any lingering disappointment as he looms as one of the club’s Powerade Breakthrough Players this season.

”His attitude has been first-class,” North Adelaide coach Jacob Surjan said.

”He was very disappointed, and so were we, that he didn’t get drafted but he really wants to improve himself.

Also unlucky not to be selected as an All-Australian at the 2019 AFL U18 National Championships, Finlay displayed his natural ability to read the play with his intercept marking.

Measuring in at 192cm and 88kg, the 18-year-old has been working closely with former Power full back – and current North assistant coach – Alipate Carlile during preseason training.

”He’s been working on his strength and body positioning with Bobby Carlile quite a bit,” Surjan said.

”We see him playing a role for us as a second or third tall defender alongside Tanner Smith and Cameron Craig.

”But he’s got to be prepared to stand the best key forwards in the competition in case one of those guys (Smith and/or Craig) is unavailable.”

Looking to build on the one League game he played in 2019, Finlay fits the criteria to be eligible for the Powerade Breakthrough Player award, being aged 23 or under at the start of the year and having played 10 League games or less.

''His attitude has been first-class. He was very disappointed, and so were we, that he didn't get drafted but he really wants to improve himself.''

North Adelaide coach Jacob Surjan

North’s Karl Finlay takes a towering intercept mark against Victoria Metro while playing for the Torrens University SA U18 team last year.

Sign up to receive the latest SANFL news straight to your inbox.