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7. Significant Players in the AFL

The high-scoring nature of Aussie Rules means that forwards, and especially full forwards, tend to be the more glamorous positions on a team. Spectacular players who take high/exciting marks, or who kick lots of goals or get a lot of possessions of the ball, are the most widely known players.

However, that doesn't mean there aren't others in any given team who are just as flashy or equally skilled. Pace midfielders with skills to burn are just as exciting to watch as they tear through the opposition lines.

Then are the defenders, most of whom go about their business with a minimum of fuss but are as just as important as the goalkickers. And let's not forget the tall ruckmen who seem to get taller, more skilled and mobile at ground level, and can be pretty handy in front of goal.

Also see Ricky Nixon's Club 10 at the end of this page for some historical perspective on this area.

This isn't an exhaustive list of stars, but players to pay attention to include:

Jordan Dawson
Rory Laird
Josh Rachele
Izaak Rankine

Harris Andrews
Charlie Cameron
Joe Daniher
Lachie Neale

Patrick Cripps
Charlie Curnow
Adam Saad
Clayton Oliver

Nick Daicos
Scott Pendlebury
Brayden Maynard

Zach Merrett
Darcy Parish
Jake Stringer

Andrew Brayshaw
Nat Fyfe
Sean Darcy
Michael Walters
Caleb Serong

Tom Stewart
Jeremy Cameron
Tom Hawkins
Tyson Stengle
Marc Blicavs

Gold Coast
Touk Miller
Matt Rowell
Noah Anderson

Greater Western Sydney
Sam Taylor
Toby Green
Finn Callaghan

James Sicily
Jye Newcombe
Mitchell Lewis
James Worpel
Luke Breust

Steven May
Max Gawn
Christian Petracca
Mason Cox

North Melbourne
Todd Goldstein
Nick Larkey

Port Adelaide
Zak Butters
Charlie Dixon
Conor Rozee
Ollie Wines

Dustin Martin
Tom Lynch
Shai Bolton
Tim Taranto

St Kilda
Jack Sinclair
Zak Jones
Rowan Marshall
Hunter Clark

Lance 'Buddy' Franklin
Isaac Heeney
Callum Mills
Luke Parker
Chad Warner

West Coast
Jack Darling
Andrew Gaff 
Nic Natanui
Luke Shuey
Jeremy McGovern

Western Bulldogs
Marcus Bontempelli
Adam Treloar
Tom Liberatore, Jr.
Aaron Naughton

Recent retirements of note:
(See our numerous articles on retirements after each season.)
Joel Selwood, Geelong
David Mundy, Fremantle
Robbie Gray, Port Adelaide
Shane Edwards, Richmond

Other notes:

Ricky Nixon's Club 10


Ricky Nixon is a former VFL player who has became the football manager (read "agent") for many high-profile AFL players. He was at one point the highest profile agent in the sport. He introduced a concept called Club 10, which featured a new marketing symbol used in product endorsements by the members. This idea had been floated for a while by the AFL, and Club 10 was formed when negotiations between the AFL and Nixon broke down. The AFL later formed its own list of 25 up-and-coming star players for similar promotions.

The original "members" of Club 10, which no longer exists, were:

  • Gary Ablett, Sr. (Geelong)

  • Gavin Brown (Collingwood)

  • Wayne Carey (North Melbourne)

  • Jason Dunstall (Hawthorn)

  • Glen Jackovich (West Coast)

  • Tony Lockett (Sydney)

  • Stewart Loewe (St Kilda)

  • Garry Lyon (Melbourne)

  • Gavin Wanganeen (Port Adelaide)

  • Greg Williams (Carlton)

    All of these original Club 10 members are now retired, the last being Gavin Wanganeen, who retired mid-season 2006. Nixon was eventually suspended as an agent following an affair with a teenage girl and attempts to restart his career subsequently failed due to addiction issues.


Article last changed on Friday, June 30, 2023 - 7:54 AM EDT

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