State League Football News

Switta’s no quitter

VFL News - 9 hours 21 min ago

The now-21-year-old small forward won the Northern Knights’ best-and-fairest award and represented Vic Metro at the NAB AFL U18 Championships in his top-age TAC Cup year but didn’t hear his name called at the 2014 NAB AFL Draft.

Switkowski then signed with the Box Hill Hawks, playing five senior games in 2015, 10 in 2016 and 12 in a break-out 2017 campaign, when he booted 19 goals and regularly proved a match-winner in between bouts of illness and injury. He also represented the VFL in May’s State Game against the WAFL.

His performances inspired Fremantle to select the St Mary’s (Yarra Junior FL) and Research (Northern FL) product with pick no.73 in this year’s AFL Draft – something that hardly surprised his coach at Northern in 2014, Andrew Shakespeare.

“I always felt he was an AFL player in a junior boy’s body at the Knights,” said Shakespeare, who led Northern from 2014-16 before becoming Box Hill’s development coach in 2017. “All his key performance areas were first-rate but he had a really underdeveloped body, and the way he played the game took its toll on his body too.

“I felt he could be a little bit reckless in his attack on the football and that resulted in him being banged up, but when he became a bit more mature at Box Hill, he was more calculated in the way he went about his football.

“His ability to stalk the opposition and take some extraordinary marks for a bloke his size (178cm) were still there, and regardless of the stage in a game, Sam always gives everything he has. Those characteristics continued to stand out and eventually someone just couldn’t say ‘no’ to them.”

Shakespeare paid tribute to Switkowski’s decision to develop himself at Box Hill after graduating from the TAC Cup, even though a strong Hawks team had just reached consecutive VFL Grand Finals in 2013-14.

According to Shakespeare, Switkowski’s eventual emergence and subsequent selection by the Dockers – along with the rookie-listing of long-time Box Hill captain David Mirra by Hawthorn this year – is a lesson to all players that miss out at draft time.

“I’ve been in touch with Sam after the drafts every year since 2014 and his reaction was always exactly the same,” Shakespeare said. “He was solely focused on what he had to do and that was to become a better player.

“Not everyone’s got the fortitude to go through three years of disappointment and continue to butter up. It’s just a great story.

“The lessons to any player that misses out on being drafted are: a) Control what you can control, and b) It’s not over until you say it’s over.”

The post Switta’s no quitter appeared first on VFL.

SANFL’s Sunday fun day

SANFL News - Fri, 12/15/2017 - 8:30am
The SANFL released its 2018 draw yesterday and has programmed more than half of its matches on Sunday afternoons. SANFL football operations manager Tom Hurley told The Advertiser games on Sunday would increase average attendances because the league was not competing against junior sport. Hurley said most Port and Crows AFL matches were also scheduled for Saturdays in 2018 so more Sunday state league games made sense to help boost attendances. “The average crowd on Saturday games in 2017 was 1990 as opposed to Sunday games where there were 2544,” Hurley said. “I think fans generally have more commitments on a Saturday afternoon and it may also be related to matches ongoing at Adelaide Oval in conflict with SANFL football. “I also think Sunday is a better opportunity for families to get out and have a day activity and the SANFL presents a great opportunity to do that.” Three games are scheduled for Good Friday, up from the two played in 2017. South Adelaide will kick off the Easter weekend – which is also round one – when it hosts Glenelg on Good Friday (March 30) at 1.10pm. SEE THE FULL DRAW HERE Central District v North Adelaide and West Adelaide v Woodville-West Torrens will also feature on Good Friday. “The key blockbuster for us is the Easter weekend,” Hurley said. “That’s a really exciting proposition for us and it’s the first time we’ll have three games and the first time West Adelaide will host a Good Friday game.” The tradition to have the past season’s grand finalists face off on Anzac Day will continue next year when reigning champion Sturt plays Port Adelaide at Unley Oval at 1.10pm. Women’s league hits the prime time WOMEN’S matches in prime timeslots and a two-week finals series are the big moves in next year’s SANFLW schedule. The 2018 fixture includes five Friday night matches – up from two this year. Next season has been extended from six minor round games to 10 and all teams will play each other twice. This follows the addition of two new teams – South Adelaide and Sturt. They join Norwood, North Adelaide, Glenelg and West Adelaide. The Panthers kick off the season with a clash against the Tigers at Noarlunga on Friday, February 2 at 6.30pm. SANFL football operations manager Tom Hurley said South was keen to make its mark in the women’s competition and the league was looking forward to seeing the talent the club had put together. “South has been eager to make its way into SANFL women’s and this is a great reward for all their effort to be involved,” Hurley said. The expansion of the league has led to a two-week finals series. The minor premier will go straight into the grand final and second will face third in a preliminary final playoff. There will also be three SANFLW games played as curtain-raisers to Crows AFLW matches – all at Norwood Oval. “It’s a great opportunity for us as a competition, but also for the players to showcase their talents on an AFL women’s stage in front of not only the Crows, but the opposition side,” Hurley said. The women’s decider will be played after the traditional men’s Anzac Day clash between the past season’s grand finalists – Port and Sturt – at Unley Oval at 4pm.

Summerton signs on at Magpies

SANFL News - Fri, 12/15/2017 - 2:54am
The Magpies captain was forced to play five reserves games this past season because of a SANFL rule stipulating that available Power players had to be selected ahead of those with league contracts. But as of 2018, the 29-year-old midfielder, who has re-signed with Port on Friday, will be able to feature in every league game regardless of the number of AFL-listed players available. The SANFL announced on Friday that it had changed its rule and both the Port and Crows reserves teams would be able to field one marquee contracted player – such as Summerton – in every match. SANFL football general manger Adam Kelly said the original rule was introduced in the first year of fielding AFL reserves teams in the state league in 2014 to uphold the integrity of the competition. Kelly said the former stipulation had not contemplated that all 21 AFL-listed players would be available, resulting in no top-up players lining up in a league match. “The provisions of the licence agreement … were included to ensure that the teams of each (AFL) club were playing the line and wanting to win,” Kelly said. “Both clubs have honoured this principle and demonstrated through their players a commitment to the contest and respect for the competition. “Ultimately, the SANFL has agreed with Port Adelaide that it is appropriate that the marquee player be able to be selected before an AFL-listed player on the occasion that 21 are available for SANFL selection.” Port Adelaide SANFL manager Shane Grimm welcomed the rule change. He said it was a big factor in Summerton’s decision to knock back offers to join rival clubs or play amateur football. “This will help us pick based on form and have our leadership player play as well, rather than having to leave them out,” Grimm said. “Come finals, the leadership player was treated the same as the AFL players, so we thought it was only fair to be the same during the season.” Sturt football manager Chris Trapp said his club had no issue with the rule change. Comment is being sought from the Crows and other SANFL clubs.

Summerton re-signs with Port following SANFL rule change

SANFL News - Fri, 12/15/2017 - 12:50am
STEVEN Summerton will be eligible to play in every Port Adelaide league game next year after a SANFL rule change. The Magpies captain was forced to play five reserves games this past season because of a SANFL rule stipulating that available Power players had to be selected ahead of those with league contracts. But as of 2018, the 29-year-old midfielder, who has re-signed with Port today, will be able to feature in every league game regardless of the number of AFL-listed players available. The SANFL announced today that it had changed its rule and both the Port and Crows reserves teams would be able to field one marquee contracted player – such as Summerton – in every match. SANFL football general manger Adam Kelly said the original rule was introduced in the first year of fielding AFL reserves teams in the state league in 2014 to uphold the integrity of the competition. Kelly said the former stipulation had not contemplated that all 21 AFL-listed players would be available, resulting in no top-up players lining up in a league match. “The provisions of the licence agreement … were included to ensure that the teams of each (AFL) club were playing the line and wanting to win,” Kelly said. “Both clubs have honoured this principle and demonstrated through their players a commitment to the contest and respect for the competition. “Ultimately, the SANFL has agreed with Port Adelaide that it is appropriate that the marquee player be able to be selected before an AFL-listed player on the occasion that 21 are available for SANFL selection.” Port Adelaide SANFL manager Shane Grimm welcomed the rule change. He said it was a big factor in Summerton’s decision to knock back offers to join rival clubs or play amateur football. “This will help us pick based on form and have our leadership player play as well, rather than having to leave them out,” Grimm said. “Come finals, the leadership player was treated the same as the AFL players, so we thought it was only fair to be the same during the season.” Sturt football manager Chris Trapp said his club had no issue with the rule change. Comment is being sought from the Crows and other SANFL clubs.

2018 VFL FIXTURE RELEASE

VFL News - Thu, 12/14/2017 - 6:01pm

The competition will next year feature 15 teams in a 21-round home-and-away season.

As part of changes to the VFL for 2018, Werribee will field a stand-alone side for the first time since 1999 and will be joined in the competition by former aligned club North Melbourne, while Frankston will return to the VFL after a one-year absence.

The opening round will be spread across two weekends, with Geelong and Werribee to begin the season on Easter Sunday in Torquay. The remaining six games of Round 1 will be completed on April 7/8, featuring reigning premier Port Melbourne unfurling its flag in the Grand Final rematch versus Richmond at Fortburn Stadium.

Stand-alone clubs will receive 10 home games in 2018, to further assist with game-day revenue and membership.

“Providing each VFL stand-alone club with an additional home game is another way we can support these clubs, providing them an opportunity to gain more game-day revenue and added exposure for club sponsors,” AFL Victoria CEO Steven Reaper said.

The release of the fixture coincides with the announcement of the Channel 7 broadcast schedule up to Round 12, with all 15 clubs to feature at least once. The broadcast matches will begin in Round 3, after Channel 7’s coverage of the Commonwealth Games, featuring the ANZAC Day clash between Collingwood and Essendon. Matches will again be broadcast on Saturday afternoon at 2pm, with three Sunday broadcast games to be part of the coverage in June.

“Channel 7 plays an integral role in the promotion of the competition and our clubs, and we look forward to their continued coverage in 2018,” Reaper said.

“We have once again ensured all clubs receive TV exposure in the first half of the season, with the remaining broadcast games to be announced once the 2018 season gets underway.”

The VFL and its clubs again featured prominently in the recent NAB AFL Draft and Rookie Draft, with the competition having seven players added to AFL lists for 2018.

“VFL clubs continue to provide opportunities to a host of players wishing to progress to the AFL,” Reaper said.

“The 2017 VFL draft class includes recycled former AFL players, long-term VFL talent, former TAC Cup players, a Next Generation Academy selection and a recruit from local football, proving the various pathways possible for potential AFL draftees in the competition.”

In 2018 all clubs will have three byes and play 18 games each. The VFL finals will begin on September 1 and conclude with the Grand Final on Sunday September 23.

Key features of the 2018 fixture:

  • Werribee will return to Avalon Airport Oval in Round 2 after the ground’s $11.75 million facility upgrade, hosting Casey Demons in a night game.
  • North Melbourne will play the majority of its home games out of Avalon Airport Oval, and will open their season in Round 2 against the Northern Blues
  • Richmond will again venture to Beaconsfield’s Holm Park Recreation Reserve for two games in Round 7 and 15.
  • Frankston will make its return to the VFL in Round 1, at home to Essendon.
  • The Round 7 Channel 7 game between Coburg and Collingwood will highlight the stand against violence towards women, with the second Vicki Cleary Day to be held in memory of the late sister of Coburg great Phil Cleary.
  • New coaches Leigh Adams (Coburg) and Jade Rawlings (Casey Demons) will meet in Round 1. They are two of six new VFL coaches in 2018, joining Dan Jordan (Essendon), Adam Skrobalak (Frankston), David Loader (North Melbourne) and Aaron Hamill (Sandringham).
  • A number of AFL curtain-raiser matches have been proposed for 2018 and will be confirmed in the new year.
  • There will be five night games across the season, with Footscray hosting two (in Round 5 and 9), and Casey (Round 4), Geelong (Round 19) and Werribee (Round 2) one each.

The Swisse Wellness VFL Women’s fixture is due for release next week.

 

CLICK HERE to download the 2018 Peter Jackson VFL fixture

The post 2018 VFL FIXTURE RELEASE appeared first on VFL.

Your Addy gets top footy award

Victoria Localfooty - Fri, 12/08/2017 - 1:52am
THE Geelong Advertiser has been judged the best daily local football media outlet in the state.

2017 Community Media Awards Winners

VFL News - Fri, 12/08/2017 - 12:20am

Seventeen winners were today announced at a special function at IKON Park, with over 90 local media representatives in attendance.

The AFL Victoria Community Media Awards acknowledge the outstanding contribution made to community and state league football by media outlets, both big and small, from right across Victoria.

See below for a list of this year’s winners:

Community- Best ACTION Photo

Nerissa Turner – FIDA Football League GF Day

Community- Best CHARACTER Photo

Glenn Daniels – Half time mouthguard (Bendigo Advertiser)

Community- Best Print/Online FEATURE story

David Johnston – Living Legends (The Border Mail)

Community- Best Print/Online NEWS story

David Johnston – Pies Heroes (The Border Mail)

Community- Best Football COLUMN (Print Online)

Ross Couzens – The Local Whiteboard (Inside Football)

Community- Best Football COLUMN (Football Record)

Joel Peterson – The Main Break (Bendigo FNL Record)

Community- Best Print/Online DAILY COVERAGE

Geelong Advertiser

Community- Best Print/Online NON-DAILY COVERAGE

The Riverine Herald

Community- Best Radio MATCH DAY coverage

Fresh FM

document.createElement('audio'); http://aflvic.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/Fresh-FM-2017-Matchday-CoverageFINAL.mp3

Community- Best Radio FOOTBALL SHOW

The Wash-Up – K rock 95.5

http://aflvic.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/K-rock-The-Wash-Up-FINAL.mp3

Community- Best TV News or Feature

Mac Time – Chris Mitchell (Nine News Border North East)

Community- Best use of ONLINE media (TV SHOW)

Essendon District Football League

Community- Best use of ONLINE media (TECHNOLOGY)

South Metro Junior Football League – Play Fair Campaign

VFL, VFL Women’s, TAC Cup, TAC Cup Girls- Best ACTION Photo

Cameron Grimes – The Mayne Attraction (Richmond FC)

VFL, VFL Women’s, TAC Cup, TAC Cup Girls- Best CHARACTER photo

Maurice Virduzzo – Captain or Caveman? (Port Melbourne FC)

VFL, VFL Women’s, TAC Cup, TAC Cup Girls- Best Print/ Online Feature

Tim Michell –  Recruiters key to success (Sunbury Leader)

VFL, VFL Women’s, TAC Cup, TAC Cup Girls- Best Print/Online COVERAGE

2017 GWV Rebels Digital Media Suite – Facebook/Website/Instagram 

 

* CLICK HERE to see all the 2017 nominations

The post 2017 Community Media Awards Winners appeared first on VFL.

Glenelg appoints new coach

SANFL News - Wed, 12/06/2017 - 11:37pm
Stone, 50, spent the past six seasons as the Dockers’ stoppages coach. Before that, he worked as a stoppage coach and opposition analyst at West Coast under John Worsfold (2003-07) and later at Sydney (2008-10). Stone replaces Matthew Lokan, who quit the Tigers’ senior post last month to coach Port Adelaide’s SANFL side. Glenelg finished seventh with a 8-10 record this past season. Lokan coached Glenelg for three years. The Tigers have not made the finals since 2011.

Fritsch’s Demon development

VFL News - Wed, 12/06/2017 - 1:03am

Selected with pick no.31, this year’s Fothergill-Round Medal winner for the VFL’s most promising young player followed former Casey teammates and 2016 Rookie Draft selections Tim Smith and Declan Keilty to Melbourne.

Like Smith and Keilty last year, 20-year-old Fritsch made the VFL Team of the Year this season after leading Casey’s goalkicking with 42 majors in 19 matches and catching the eye of many with his high leaping and reading of the play. He also represented the VFL in May’s state game against the WAFL – as Smith did against the SANFL in 2016.

Casey General Manager Matthew Young said a majority of AFL clubs had spoken to Fritsch in the lead-up to the AFL Draft, but that Melbourne had seen his development at VFL level first-hand and pounced.

“The program we’ve put in place at Casey and the way we play is replicated in the AFL system at Melbourne,” Young said.

“If they’ve seen those players in a system that replicates theirs, then it ticks their boxes. The players go straight into the AFL program and pick up the game style and structure really quickly and know the language they’re talking, so it gives them a bit of a headstart.”

Fritsch has overcome a range of setbacks to reach the elite level. Having missed out on making a TAC Cup list as a junior, he starred at senior level for Coldstream in the Eastern Football League in 2013-14, winning the league’s Division 4 ‘Young Gun’ award as well as a premiership at U19 level in 2014.

Fritsch was then signed by Casey after being brought to the club’s attention by one of its assistant coaches and, according to Young, “his talent was evident from the start”. He played three senior games early in the 2015 season but struggled with back and knee injuries that prevented him from appearing at senior level again until Round 1 this year.

“At the start, our goal was just to get him on the field and get him to understand himself from a recovery and rehab point of view,” Young said of Fritsch’s early troubles at Casey. “But from a talent point of view, he understood our program and his role as a forward very quickly.

“From my perspective, he’s the most talented player we’ve had on our VFL list.”

That talent was finally unshackled this year, but Young said hard work was equally responsible for Fritsch’s stellar season.

“Bayley’s been working as an electrician the last couple of years, getting up at 5 or 6am, driving to work, getting home, getting changed and then coming to training,” Young said. “That work ethic off the field is another key attribute for him as a footballer.

“He was injured a fair bit in his first two years with us, but his recovery and rehab was in line with what you’d expect from an AFL footballer.

“We think if he can build his body up by being in a full-time program, he should play some really strong AFL footy. He’s been given the number 31 jumper at Melbourne which has previously been worn by Ron Barassi, so obviously the Dees have some confidence in him.”

 

See below the last 12 Fothergill-Round Medal winners, who have all subsequently joined AFL lists:

YEAR NAME VFL CLUB SELECTED BY 2017 Bayley Fritsch Casey Demons Melbourne 2016 Luke Ryan Coburg Fremantle 2015 Adam Marcon Williamstown Richmond* 2014 Nic Newman Frankston Sydney* 2013 Kane Lambert Northern Blues Richmond* 2012 Dean Towers North Ballarat Sydney 2011 Ahmed Saad Northern Bullants St Kilda 2010 Michael Hibberd Frankston Essendon 2009 Michael Barlow Werribee Fremantle* 2008 Robin Nahas Port Melbourne Richmond* 2007 Shane Valenti Sandringham Melbourne* 2006 Jason Davenport Geelong Geelong*

* Selected as rookies

The post Fritsch’s Demon development appeared first on VFL.

VFL clubs on 2017 draft class

VFL News - Mon, 12/04/2017 - 12:54am

 

BAYLEY FRITSCH (Casey Demons)

20yo (21 on December 6) / 186cm goalkicking forward / AFL Draft pick no.31 to Melbourne

Casey Demons General Manager Matthew Young:

“Bayley’s a really good kick, reads the play well and takes contested marks. Off-field, he’s really quiet and gets the job done. He was injured a fair bit in his first two years with us (2015-16), but his recovery and rehab was in line with what you’d expect from an AFL footballer. We think if he can build his body up by being in a full-time AFL program, it would strengthen him as a footballer. He’s been given the number 31 jumper at Melbourne, which is a pretty strong number for the club – a previous wearer being Ron Barassi – so obviously the Dees have some confidence in him.”

SAM SWITKOWSKI (Box Hill Hawks) – CLICK HERE for his ‘Draft Watch’ story

21yo / 178cm goalkicking forward / AFL Draft pick no.73 to Fremantle

Box Hill Hawks General Manager Daniel Napoli:

“‘Switta’ won our best clubman award this year, so he’s a terrific guy to have at the footy club on and off the field. He’s an absolute workhorse. He trains hard and plays exactly the same way – 100 per cent all the time. He’s a high-pressure small forward and that type of player is what AFL clubs are looking for after this season, with the Tigers (winning the AFL premiership on the back of applying intense pressure on the opposition). He’s a good clubman and we’ll miss that.”

 

CAM O’SHEA (Northern Blues)

25yo / 193cm running defender / Pre-Season Draft pick no.1 to Carlton

The Northern Blues coach Josh Fraser:

“Everyone that is connected to our club at the Northern Blues is absolutely thrilled for Cameron,” Fraser said. “We couldn’t have asked for any more from him since day one: he invested in all areas of our club from the start and he backed it up with his performances each week. Centre-half back in the VFL Team of the Year, playing for Victoria and a best-and-fairest sees him back on an AFL list: it’s a great story. Of course, it’s better that Cam has made his way to Carlton: it’s the ideal scenario. Both our coaching and recruiting staff are heavily invested in our VFL program. They’ve had a close eye on Cameron and a lot of our other boys over the course of the year. The fact he’s gone to Carlton makes it even more special, we’re rapt for him.”

After a dominant season for @NBluesFC, new recruit @camoshea13 has received his just rewards. #BoundByBlue pic.twitter.com/FIn72gsnMq

— Carlton FC (@CarltonFC) November 27, 2017

BILLY GOWERS (Footscray)

21yo / 188cm utility / Rookie Draft pick no.9 to Western Bulldogs

Western Bulldogs Recruiting Manager Simon Dalrymple:

“Billy continually impressed this year with his forward play and athleticism. He’s a dangerous overhead mark and can have great impact in the air and on the scoreboard. It’s a credit to (Footscray senior coach) Steve Grace, (Western Bulldogs Development Manager) Rohan Smith and Bulldogs development coaches to have someone like Billy graduate from the Footscray VFL program and earn a spot on an AFL list. Billy’s familiarity with the club and development through the VFL program has allowed him to ease into the AFL pre-season quite comfortably.”

 

BRODY MIHOCEK (Port Melbourne)

24yo / 192cm key defender / Rookie Draft pick no.22 to Collingwood

Port Melbourne Football Manager Anthony Piccolo:

“Brody’s last two seasons were outstanding. His ability to read the game and intercept mark is elite. This year he added the ability to be more creative once he got the ball, making quick decisions to get the ball moving to set up attacks. He is brave and would run through a brick wall over and over. He displayed that he can perform in big matches with seven marks and 20 disposals in the VFL Grand Final. It’s a great story of perseverance, coming over to Victoria from Tasmania (ahead of the 2013 season), playing local football and then being a fringe player at Werribee (in 2014-15) before joining Port Melbourne.”

Brody Mihocek is apparently ready to play, six years after his first attempt to become an AFL footballer – https://t.co/Hrwb6x202m #FOREVER pic.twitter.com/dxrg3UKBke

— Collingwood FC (@CollingwoodFC) November 29, 2017

DAVID MIRRA (Box Hill Hawks) – CLICK HERE for his Draft story

26yo / 186cm versatile defender / Rookie Draft pick no.23 to Hawthorn

Box Hill Hawks General Manager Daniel Napoli:

“I can’t speak highly enough of Dave for the influence he has around the group, on and off the field. He’s a tremendous leader and he sets the standard. Hawthorn did have a relatively young defence this year and having a guy like Dave in the team brings a wealth of experience and a lot of leadership. I think that’s the main driver behind his selection. Thankfully he’s at Hawthorn and – while hopefully he’s playing AFL – we still get to see him (at Box Hill), which is a great result.”

 

DEREK SMITH (Richmond VFL) – CLICK HERE for his ‘Draft Watch’ story

19yo / 186cm running defender / Next Generation Academy rookie signing by Richmond

Richmond AFL General Manager – Football Talent Dan Richardson:

“We have invested significantly in our (Next Generation) Academy (NGA) zone and Derek’s selection is a credit to our club and its centre for Indigenous youth, the Korin Gamadji Institute. Derek is a talented Indigenous footballer who has gone from strength to strength since he became engaged in our NGA and VFL programs. This reinforces that our Academy provides a genuine pathway for Indigenous and multicultural boys and girls to play elite football.”

The other #PJVFL player to join an AFL list today is @RichmondVFL youngster Derek Smith, signed by @Richmond_FC as a Category B rookie under the Next Generation Academy rules. pic.twitter.com/xRJqlub4Al

— #PJVFL / #VFLWomens (@VFL) November 27, 2017

The post VFL clubs on 2017 draft class appeared first on VFL.

Box Hill reflects on Mirra

VFL News - Tue, 11/28/2017 - 7:58pm

The versatile 26-year-old defender isn’t going far from Hawthorn’s Peter Jackson VFL affiliate, but his 126-game career as one of the most decorated VFL-listed players of recent times has met a popular end.

After graduating from the Eastern Ranges in the TAC Cup in 2009, the Scoresby and St Simons (Eastern FL) junior played just one senior match in his first season with the Hawks in 2010 before quickly establishing a reliable presence in Box Hill’s defensive half.

Mirra earned the first of four VFL Team of the Year selections in 2011 (others in 2013-15) and represented the VFL three times at state level (2013-14 and 2016). He played in three VFL grand finals from 2013-15 including a premiership victory in 2013, took on the club captaincy in 2014 – later breaking Alex Gardiner’s 50-year-old club record of 73 games as skipper in Round 17 this year – and won the Hawks’ best-and-fairest in 2016.

Box Hill General Manager Daniel Napoli said finding out Mirra had finally made it to the elite level was an “unbelievable moment”.

“I think he goes down as one of Box Hill’s greatest-ever players,” Napoli said.

“I can’t speak highly enough of Dave for the influence he has around the group, on and off the field. He’s a tremendous leader and he sets the standard.

“Hawthorn did have a relatively young defence this year and having a guy like Dave in the team brings a wealth of experience and a lot of leadership.

“Thankfully he’s at Hawthorn and – while hopefully he’s playing AFL – we still get to see him (at Box Hill), which is a great result.”

Napoli said Mirra’s rookie-listing and Fremantle’s selection of his younger teammate and dynamic small forward Sam Switkowski in Friday night’s NAB AFL Draft was a boost for the club’s VFL player development program.

“It’s a massive tick for us,” Napoli said.

“This is exactly what we set out to achieve – to have a program that enables players to fulfil their potential. Thankfully for these two, they get to do that and jump on AFL lists.

“Everyone at the club is proud.”

The post Box Hill reflects on Mirra appeared first on VFL.

Your Addy in mix for top AFL Vic awards

Victoria Localfooty - Mon, 11/27/2017 - 6:48pm
THE Geelong Advertiser has confirmed its standing as a leading local football outlet, short-listed for nine categories in the AFL Victoria media awards.

Top dog Nick Holman heads to the Gold Coast

SANFL News - Mon, 11/27/2017 - 6:08pm
Central District’s 2017 best and fairest was on Carlton’s senior list for two seasons before being delisted at the end of 2015. Now the 22-year-old midfielder has another shot at the elite level – this time with Gold Coast, which selected him with pick 19 in Monday’s rookie draft. Holman, who has spent the past two seasons at Central, is keen to work hard to ensure he makes the most of his second chance. “I feel very relieved,” Holman, of Enfield, says. “Being on an AFL list before taught me how professional you have to be to make it. “But there’s no secret to success apart from hard work, so I’ll be training hard and putting in the hard yards. “I just want to earn a bit of respect from my teammates and coaches at Gold Coast.” Draftee's house party erupts Holman made an early impression at Central with his tackling and strong stoppage work. This past season he was named in The Advertiser Team of the Year and claimed the Bulldogs’ highest individual honour. “It was an up-and-down year (with Central) and we didn’t win as many games as we would’ve liked,” he says. “But the SANFL is a really strong league and I learnt a lot from it.” Carlton selected Holman, who was vice-captain of TAC Cup club Murray Bushrangers, as an 18-year-old with pick 51 at the 2013 national draft. He spent most of his first year in the VFL with Northern Blues before making his AFL debut against Port Adelaide in round 22, 2014. Holman finished his stint at the Blues with nine AFL matches. “I take a lot out of being at the Blues for two years even though it didn’t quite work out. “I feel better for it now going into the Gold Coast.” Holman was set to fly over to Gold Coast tomorrow (Wednesday, November 29) to begin pre-season.

Five more VFL players join AFL lists

VFL News - Mon, 11/27/2017 - 2:20am

After exciting goalkickers Bayley Fritsch (Casey Demons) and Sam Switkowski (Box Hill Hawks) were taken by Melbourne and Fremantle respectively in the AFL Draft, 25-year-old Northern Blues best-and-fairest and former Port Adelaide AFL defender Cam O’Shea was the only player taken in the Pre-Season Draft, by Carlton.

In the Rookie Draft, 21-year-old Footscray utility and ex-Carlton rookie Billy Gowers was the VFL’s first selection at pick no.9 by the Western Bulldogs, before 24-year-old Port Melbourne premiership backman Brody Mihocek was taken by Collingwood with pick no.22 and 26-year-old veteran Box Hill captain David Mirra joined Hawthorn with pick no.23.

In addition, 19-year-old Richmond VFL indigenous prospect Derek Smith was pre-selected by the AFL Tigers via the Next Generation Academy rules.

 

VFL players added to AFL lists on Monday:

Pick no. First name Surname AFL club VFL club PSD 1 Cam O’Shea Carlton Northern Blues 9 Billy Gowers Western Bulldogs Footscray 22 Brody Mihocek Collingwood Port Melbourne 23 David Mirra Hawthorn Box Hill Hawks Cat.B Derek Smith Richmond Richmond VFL

The post Five more VFL players join AFL lists appeared first on VFL.

Redlegs’ Territorian bound for Brisbane

SANFL News - Sun, 11/26/2017 - 10:15pm
But scouts started circling after the Darwin-raised Norwood midfielder had an outstanding national under-18 championships with the Allies in July. Even still, Bailey was shocked to have bolted to be a first-round draft selection on Friday when Brisbane called his name at pick 15. “It’s still pretty surreal to think about, that I’ve just been picked up by a (AFL) club,” Bailey, 18, says. “To get picked at number 15 was a bit of a surprise. “At the start of the year, I was relatively unknown and I didn’t really have any expectation to get drafted. “I guess throughout the year I got a bit of confidence, but I still didn’t see myself in that sort of category.” Rockliff responding well after surgery Bailey moved to Adelaide three years ago to give himself a greater opportunity to take his football and academic career further. He boarded at Prince Alfred College, played three under-18 matches with the Redlegs this past season and also helped PAC win the Messenger Shield college football title. Bailey, who was highly regarded for his speed and agility, worked hard to change his diet and increased his training load to boost his chances of being drafted. “You can’t really diet when you get served up what you get served up in the boarding house, but I did try,” he says. “I did a bit of extra running too.” Bailey was looking forward to training alongside Brisbane captain Dayne Beams and new Lion Luke Hodge during pre-season. “I am pretty quick and I can burst through stoppages, so I’m looking forward to getting stuck into training. “They (Brisbane) have brought in some good talent over the past couple of years.”

Sturt caps huge year with five draftees

SANFL News - Sun, 11/26/2017 - 8:39pm
Two months after winning the league, reserves and under-18 SANFL grand finals, the Double Blues had five players selected in the national draft. Callum Coleman-Jones (Richmond), Charlie Ballard (Gold Coast), Jordan Houlahan (Essendon), Mitch Crowden (Fremantle) and Brandon Zerk-Thatcher (Essendon) all found AFL homes on Friday night. The only teams that produced more draftees than Sturt were TAC Cup clubs Eastern Ranges (nine) and Bendigo Pioneers (six). Sturt’s high-performance manager and under-18 coach from last season, Chris Trapp, was thrilled for the quintet. “I’m just over the moon for all those guys and was certainly a very proud man on Friday night,” Trapp said. “To have five from one club is amazing. “You’re always hopeful for those guys but you just never know until the names are read out. “It’s a fantastic result for us and really good reward for effort. “This finishes off the year beautifully for us – we couldn’t have scripted it any better.” Trapp watched the draft at home on Friday and rang the five draftees after they were selected. “That was certainly a special moment for me, to be able to make those congratulatory calls to the guys and talk about where they’re going and what it means to them for now,” he said. “They’re always welcome at Sturt and are considered Sturt people. “I wished them all the best.” Lions select Cameron Rayner with first pick Trapp, who was this month appointed as Sturt’s new football manager and reserves coach, said getting players drafted was a key component of the club’s junior program. “It’ll be a fantastic selling point for our club as well and hopefully help in terms of junior recruiting so players in our zone know there’s a good program in place and genuine pathway to the AFL from Sturt footy club.” Former Sturt football manager David Oatey is now in charge of the club’s high-performance program and is the new under-18 coach.

Fritsch and Switkowski drafted

VFL News - Fri, 11/24/2017 - 6:47am

 

186cm 20-year-old Fritsch became the 12th straight Fothergill-Round Medal winner to have subsequently been drafted when he was taken by Casey’s affiliate the AFL Demons with pick no.31.

He joins other recipients of the honour for the VFL’s most promising young player such as Michael Barlow (who won while at Werribee in 2009), Michael Hibberd (Frankston, 2010), Kane Lambert (Williamstown, 2013), Nic Newman (Frankston, 2014) and last year’s winner Luke Ryan (Coburg) to graduate to the elite level.

2017 was Fritsch’s third season at Casey Fields, with the Coldstream (Eastern FL) product having played only three previous senior VFL games in 2015 before recovering from injury in 2016 to break into the senior line-up this year.

His high leaping and nous around goal caught the eye of many in 2017, booting 42 goals in 19 matches to be Casey’s leading goalkicker while averaging 12 disposals at 75 per cent efficiency and five marks per game.

Fritsch was rewarded for his stellar campaign with selection in the VFL Team of the Year, while he also represented the VFL in May’s state game against the WAFL.

 

178cm 21-year-old Switkowski was selected by the Dockers with pick no.73, backing up his breakout finish to the 2016 season with some eye-catching 2017 performances in between suffering from illness and a range of injuries.

His defensive pressure and goalkicking nous were on show in 12 matches for the Hawks this year, booting 19 goals while averaging 12 disposals at 76 per cent efficiency and four tackles per game.

The St Mary’s (Yarra Junior FL) and Research (Northern FL) product played 27 senior games in three seasons at Box Hill after graduating from the Northern Knights in the TAC Cup, where he won a club best-and-fairest award in 2014.

Switkowski also represented the VFL in May’s State Game against the WAFL.

* CLICK HERE to read vfl.com.au’s Draft Watch profile on Sam Switkowski

 

VFL players who missed out on selection at the draft will have another chance to be selected to join AFL lists in Monday’s Rookie Draft.

The post Fritsch and Switkowski drafted appeared first on VFL.

Fresh Weed: Son of Crows cult figure a draft smoky

SANFL News - Wed, 11/22/2017 - 10:05pm
Instead, Jake Weidemann – the son of former Adelaide Crows cult figure Wayne Weidemann – hopes to create his own legacy if he lands on an AFL list. Jake, a utility at Wayne’s former SANFL club Woodville-West Torrens, has emerged as a draft prospect this year after representing SA at the national under-18 championships and also playing six reserves and 10 under-18 games for the Eagles. But Jake, 18, says he and his Dad are very different players. “I won’t be growing a mullet anytime soon,” Jake, of Rosewater, says with a laugh. “A bit of outside noise has said ‘you should be like your old man’. “But I know we are completely different players, so I don’t put any real pressure on myself to be too much like him. Draft preview “He was a lot harder at the body than I am and he was a bit more obvious when he did it.” Wayne played 68 games for Adelaide 1991-96, becoming a favourite with the Crows crowd who called “Weed” when he was in possession of the ball. But he did not begin his AFL career until he was 24 – something Jake planned to use as motivation if he was not selected in this Friday’s national draft or as a rookie next week. “If I don’t get picked up, I will definitely hang around footy and try to play as much league (with the Eagles) as I can and work my way back into the system,” he says. Wayne is nervous for Jake but excited that he may follow in his footsteps. “He’s a completely different player to me and he’ll make his own way,” Wayne, now 51, says. “He’s probably not as reckless as I was and he is a bit smarter, and much more skilful. “If he was able to play at the same club that I did, I think that would be fantastic. “But he’d be happy to go anywhere in any state and at any footy club.”

AFL Draft Watch – Sam Switkowski

VFL News - Sun, 11/19/2017 - 10:20pm

The 178cm 20-year-old backed up his breakout finish to the 2016 season with some eye-catching performances this year, in between a bout of glandular fever as well as ankle and hamstring injuries – with a hamstring tear ending his season in Round 18 and then a recurrence keeping him sidelined currently.

Switkowski played 12 senior matches for the Hawks in 2017, booting 19 goals while averaging 12 disposals at 76 per cent efficiency and four tackles per game. He also represented the VFL in May’s State Game against the WAFL.

The St Mary’s (Yarra Junior FL) and Research (Northern FL) product has now made 27 senior VFL appearances for Box Hill since 2015 after graduating from the Northern Knights in the TAC Cup, where he won a club best-and-fairest award in 2014.

vfl.com.au spoke to Switkowski at the recent Victorian State Draft Combine at Etihad Stadium ahead of the 2017 NAB AFL Draft on Friday November 24.

 

What strengths of yours have you been using to sell yourself to AFL clubs?

  • I think I’ve now made a name for myself as a small forward and I think pressure is my biggest strength. I’ve been pushing that all year in how I play and that’s my biggest pitch towards AFL clubs. I was a defender during my junior career, so that defensive side of my footy started when I was pretty young.

 

When did you start playing as a forward?

  • Not until the start of last year. I played a bit in the midfield through the TAC Cup and in defence before that. (Former Box Hill senior coach) Marco Bello probably gave me that opportunity (as a permanent forward) and I guess after playing a few solid games in the seniors down forward, everything just flew from there.

 

What is the strangest question you’ve been asked by AFL club recruiters?

  • They ask a lot of stuff about life outside footy, which is interesting. They really want to know about your personal life and about your family and your work.

 

What parts of your game do you know you’ll need to work on if you’re drafted?

  • I’m a little fella and I’m fairly skinny so I still need to build up my body a fair bit, but I think that’s something that’ll happen over time. In terms of skills, I could still improve on my kicking.

 

Which AFL players do you particularly like to watch and model your game on?

  • Small forwards are pretty important now that Richmond has showed what they can do with their pressure this year. Being at Box Hill watching the Hawthorn guys like Cyril Rioli, Luke Breust and Paul Puopolo, I look up to them a lot. Even watching (Adelaide duo) Charlie Cameron and Eddie Betts in the finals – the pressure they put on and ability to hit the scoreboard is something I’m trying to do myself.

 

How would you assess your 2017 season?

  • It’s been very up and down. I’ve had two hamstring tears, an ankle injury and glandular fever which is pretty unlucky, but at the same time I’ve managed to play some alright football. With those ups and downs, I feel like there’s unfinished business and I’m ready to get going for next year.

 

What expectations did you have for yourself at the start of the year?

  • I started to hit my straps a little bit in the second half of 2016 and play some consistent footy, so the aim for this year was to play a full season consistently and try to take my footy to the next level and show that I have what it takes to go up to the AFL.

 

What do you think was your best individual performance of the season?

  • Probably the game against Port Melbourne (a draw in Round 7). Sometimes as a small forward you can be a bit lucky and the ball just falls in your hands. I managed to put through five goals that day, but it was more about the quality of the opposition. You want to play well in big games and Port have shown how good they are, winning the premiership in the end.

 

Which opponents caught your eye or were particularly difficult to play on this year?

  • If I look back to that Port Melbourne game, Luke Tynan was a really tough opponent. Players like him scrap on you and as a forward you hate that. I just want some space to run and he made it really hard and also wanted to run off me and get a bit of the footy, so he made me accountable.

 

Who do you think has had the biggest influence on your football in the VFL?

  • Two key people would be (former Box Hill senior coach) Marco Bello and (current senior coach) Chris Newman. Marco got me down to the club in the first place and gave me the opportunity. I was able to get into the senior side through him. With Chris coming in this year, he’s pushed me to keep improving and he’s very respectful and very honest with the whole group. He’s someone you really want to play under.

 

Which of your teammates do you think should also be talked about as draft prospects?

  • I think there’s plenty. We’ve got guys like David Mirra, who’s now been at Box Hill for eight years but every year he keeps improving. He holds up our back line and is probably the best leader I’ve ever seen on the football field. We’ve also got younger guys like Anthony Brolic and Chris Jones who are playing consistent senior footy.

 

THE FAST FIVE with Sam Switkowski

What food could you not live without?

  • Pizza. I usually get the lot.

 

If you weren’t possibly about to become a full-time footballer, what would be your dream job?

  • I’m doing environmental engineering right now but I don’t know if it’s my dream job. I’m actually thinking about ending up doing a Masters of Teaching because I like working with kids in schools.

 

What karaoke song would you sing to save your life?

  • I like ‘Dancing Queen’ by Abba – that’s one of my favourites.

 

Which teammate would you want to be stranded on a desert island with and why?

  • Nick Evans, because he’s pretty smart and at the same time he’s a lot of fun.

 

Which teammate would you not want to be stranded on a desert island with and why?

  • Anthony Brolic, because I reckon you’d get sick of him real quick!

The post AFL Draft Watch – Sam Switkowski appeared first on VFL.

Porplyzia calls Bloods draft prospect a match-winner

SANFL News - Wed, 11/15/2017 - 11:21pm
WEST Adelaide veteran and former Crow and Jason Porplyzia describes the Bloods’ sole AFL draft prospect Josh Smithson as a match-winner. “He had the ability to almost single-handedly win games for the under-18 side this year,” says Porplyzia, who works with West’s Centre of Excellence. “He knows what he is doing when he has the football in his hands – he’s a good decision- maker.” But Smithson says dedication and hard work rather than talent alone has lifted him into this year’s AFL national draft contention. He juggled his Bloods’ under-18 commitments with working as an apprentice carpenter this year. It was physically and mentally demanding, but he stuck at it. “It’s good to hear something like that coming from him (Porplyzia) and it’s probably a generous comment,” Smithson, 18, says. “It was definitely pretty tough juggling the balance of training and still working hard. “But I just put my head down and focused on football and I was able to play a full season with the team.” The 185cm forward/midfielder was named in the Bloods’ best 13 times, helping him claim the SANFL under-18’s Most Valuable Player and later earn an invitation to test at last month’s SA Draft Combine. Smithson, from the Murray Mallee town of Karoonda, moved to Adelaide two years ago and was a boarder at Prince Alfred College. At the draft camp, he finished equal first in the 20m sprint with Sturt’s Mitch Crowden. He also finished in the top five in the agility test, running vertical jump and standing vertical jump. “The combine was a pretty unreal experience,” Smithson, who supports Carlton, says. “It would be unreal to get drafted – it’s always been a dream of mine.” Smithson will watch next week’s national draft at his Richmond home with his older brother Andrew.
Syndicate content