Source: Patrick Dangerfield via Facebook
As we move towards the end of the normal season, we start to think about who will take home the prestigious Brownlow Medal. There have been many amazing team performances throughout the year so far, but this particular honour is reserved for individual brilliance: the players that give the fans hard-working, and often spectacular, performances from week to week.
The contest this year has recently started to turn into a two-horse race between Dustin Martin and Patrick Dangerfield; the latest AFL odds of 2.00 for Dangerfield and 2.10 for Martin suggest that one of these players will be the one to claim the coveted award.
Dangerfield has been fantastic for the Cats this year and an instrumental part of their attacking brand of football. So far this season, he has kicked 33 goals for Geelong and taken 75 marks. He has the most disposals for the club, with 519, and is leading the tackle count, with 99. In only his second year at the club after making the swap from the Crows in 2016, he has settled in beautifully and is playing some of the best footy of his career. The energetic midfielder rightfully claimed the award last year, winning with a record-breaking 35 votes, and many people are predicting he could make it two in a row.
Source: Dustin Martin via Facebook
Meanwhile, Tigers midfielder Martin has been excellent this year and a major part of Coach Damien Hardwick’s brand of footy. The Tigers are starting to look like real title contenders this year and currently sit fourth on the ladder. The 2016 All-Australian’s contribution to the team has been outstanding and his level of consistency has been remarkable, kicking 23 goals and taking 73 marks. He has the most disposals for the club, with 508, and has made a very impressive 67 tackles. Martin was awarded the Jack Dyer Medal at the end of last season as Richmond’s best and fairest player. He was also the club’s highest-placed player in the mix for the Brownlow Medal and third overall.
The dark house of the race is Hawthorn’s Tom Mitchell. His first season playing for the Hawks has been fantastic; the young midfielder has kicked nine majors so far this season and leads the way for disposals, with a staggering 615. He also has the most marks for the club, with 99, and leads the tackle count, with a commanding 114. It’s easy to see why Mitchell has become a fan favourite with those sort of figures.
Zach Merret from the Bombers is another who is playing some extremely good football. The other ‘roughies’ to watch out for are Josh Kelly from the GWS Giants and Rory Sloane from the Adelaide Crows. Both have had exceptional seasons and will surely be in the mix come the end of the year.
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