Who left the door open? There’s a draft in here.



by Andrew Gigacz

I’m no Emma Quayle, but here are a few things I’ve spotted in this year’s draft:

  • Port Adelaide have picked up Brendan Ah Chee and Nathan Blee. Is this the first time two players whose surnames end with -ee have been taken by the same team in the same draft?
  • The Western Bulldogs picked up Daniel Pearce, which means the AFL now has a Pearce who knows who to spell the name “Daniel”.
  • The Saints grabbed a man who sounds like he could be a snooker champ – Jimmy Webster.
  • Rory Taggert has swapped solving murders in Glasgow for a chance to play for Melbourne. (Oh, that’s a different Taggert, is it?)
  • GWS took Dom Tyson with pick 3. I’m betting he gets called Tom Dyson more than once.
  • The Gold Coast drafted Henry Schade. Had they taken a Freud as well they could have had the gun pairing of Schade ‘n’ Freud.
  • Geelong are hoping to do it again with 29 year old Orren Stephenson. The Cats also picked up Jordan Murdoch in an effort to gain more positive coverage from News Limited, and the “President-General”, Lincoln McCarthy.
  • Freo promoted rookie Nick Lower, meaning “Lower” has moved “up a” notch.

Are you happy with the payers your club picked up? Add your thoughts here.


About Andrew Gigacz

Well, here we are. The Bulldogs have won a flag. What do I do now?


  1. Gigz, I did notice this on the North website this morning:

    Pick 18: Brad McKenzie, Sturt
    (Bryce) Lewis (NMFC recruiter) says: “We went to his home earlier in the year, we interviewed him at the Draft Combine, and then we went back to his house and interviewed him again. It was maybe a bit of overkill from us. We asked Brad the question, ‘Why do you think we’re here again?’ And were angling for a certain answer. And he said, ‘Because you want to pick me.’ We thought that was a good response.”

    Ummm … what other response was Brad going to give?

    Based on this, I have great confidence that North have superior psychological draft-screening processes.

  2. That’s a classic, Rev. I’d love to ask the North recruiters for some examples of responses that weren’t good.

  3. Skip of Skipton says

    I like seeing where they come from. I noticed the SE of South Australia had a good crop this year with Bordertown, Kybybolite and Port Macdonnell all represented. In my locale Carngham-Linton bred a kid for the Bombers and Beaufort provided Brad Crouch to the Crows in the 17yr old mini-draft.

  4. Is it also possible that they called out Daniel Pearce’s name wrong? Is he not Pearce Daniel?

    Same too for Richmond’s Elton Todd… or is it Todd Elton?

  5. Collingwood has a Jackson (Paine) whose parents used a more conventional spelling than Jaxson Barham’s. There were three Jacksons drafted (pity it wasn”t five)

    The most popular name in the Draft was Alex (4 + an Alik). Also four Nicks or Nicholases, four Matts or Matthews and three Toms and Sams. I was more interested in the fact that there were two Elliotts and one Devon. Why are Devon and Kent the only English counties to be used as boys names? I want to see footballers with the first names of Hampshire, Northumberland, Norwich or Essex drafted. Or perhaps Middlesex, but if there are no openly gay footballers then the AFL is probably not ready for a Middlesex either.

  6. Speaking of Jacksons, Jackson Merrett was recruited from Cobden, the town from which Collingwood legend Thorold Merrett was recruited over fifty years ago. I would love to know how they are related. A friend of mine from Warrnambool treated a member of the Merrett family in Cobden a few years ago who explained to her how Roger Merrett of Kaniva was related to Thorold and the Cobden Merretts (2nd cousin) so there are clearly still relatives of Thorold in Cobden.

    If anyone knows the relationship between Thorold and Essendon’s new recruit please post. As I disclosed in this year’s Almanac (p.37) I used to wear Thorold’s number 17 on my back as a wee boy in the 50s.

  7. Gigs – the commentators might come up with:

    Chee………to Blee…………….to Cassisee

  8. I think Geelong have done it again sadly. A few excellent picks there. Will reinforce their team and give them another run at September glory. This time the Magpies need to be better prepared.

  9. Billy Longer is 201cm tall. I wonder if Brisbane would still have picked him had Longer been shorter.

  10. Skip of Skipton says

    Jackson Merrett is the Great Nephew of Thorold.

  11. ‘Thanks, Skip.

  12. When the Lions play the Dockers will Longer go Lower?

  13. Skip of Skipton says

    “The Cats can lay claim to having the best draft of the lot” sayeth ‘draft guru’ Jason Phelan’s assessment on the AFL website. You just have to love it. I have looked at videotape of them and;

    Hamling is seriously quick and agile for 6’4″. Will be known as the ‘white Nic-Nat’.

    Kersten looks like a genuine full-forward, agile and skilled at ground level also.

    Murdoch was the fastest tested over 20m and looks a tall, long-kicking half-forward. Could play as a lead up type or as a running finisher. Think Mackie, but better. Or 6’3′ Wojo.

    There was no footage of McCarthy, but going from his photograph he looks like he has suddenly materialised into the here and now from of the 1970s. Refreshingly non-metrosexual. Maybe that’s how it is around Bordertown.

    Orren Stephenson is a good left-field call. With Ottens retired and Blake finished, Trent West with 20 odd games under his belt was the most experienced ruck on the list.


  14. Peter B, if we had EPL rules and players could be loaned to other clubs, we could have Lower for hire.

  15. I should be a draft selector for Collingwood.
    Prettyness is a major KPI these days!

    btw Gigs was best dressed at the launch :P

  16. I’m just embarrassed I follow a sport who use the word “Combine” for nothing more than a draft camp.

  17. Ha! Thanks, Danni.

  18. Mooks – yes, in my day a Combine was a Harvester.

  19. Skip of Skipton says

    Combine is what the NFL call their draft camp. What do you expect?

  20. Otto was known as the Big O in these parts, and now we’ve picked up the Big O to cover for him. I guess we’re hoping for success by imitation.

    Also interesting, we’ve picked up a strongly built, 190cm full forward. A bit short to be a full forward I would have thought. That height, weight and background reminds me of someone esle though; a certain red head.

  21. @Skip. Your wrap up of the players selected by the Cats is why I love the draft and this time of year. The optimism is exciting and the predictions bold (ie.”Think Mackie, but better.”)

    I’ve helped hopes for many a player we’ve drafted and I particularly remember thinking that Carl Steinfort was going to be anything when he was drafted. Not sure why. But it’s a great time of year.

  22. Glad we have a replacement for Drew, Tom Curran!

  23. Richard Naco says

    Quoth Pete: “Also interesting, we’ve picked up a strongly built, 190cm full forward. A bit short to be a full forward I would have thought. That height, weight and background reminds me of someone esle though; a certain red head.”

    Didn’t said redhead start out as a full forward as well?

    (I’m One Happy Catter after last night’s typical Wellsian performance.)

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