JLT Rookie Review – Weekend 1

Written by Huttabito on February 27 2018

Tom Doedee ($123,900 DEF) says “No Lever, No worries – I got this” and has just about wrapped up a Rd1 debut after an impressive performance. Finished with the equal most amount of 1%ers for the game (5), he also managed 16 disposals (4 kicks) at 82% DE with 4 tackles as the cherry on top of his 85 points. He looks set to be a must have rookie in our backlines for early 2018.

Lachlan Murphy ($102,400 DEF) got a chance to play the small forward role with Adelaide missing it’s top 4 options. Enjoyed his time out there and managed to kick three goals to help him to 68 points puts his hand up if they need someone of his stature in the side. Managed 10 disposals (7 kicks), 1 mark (contested) and 2 tackles all from 63% TOG.

Harry Dear ($123,900 FWD/DEF) is into his 4th season with the Crows and opened the game with a goal in the opening minute. Did most his work in the opening half and finished up on 52 points from 7 disposals (4 kicks), 1 goal, 2 behinds, 3 marks and 2 tackles from 72% TOG. Has handy DPP however played a key forward role with Walker out and it’s hard to see how he would fit with the top heavy line-up.

Myles Poholke ($123,900 MID/FWD) played for the Crow reserves in the SANFL and worked his way up to senior emergency after the byes before tiring and dropping off. Scored half his points in the opening quarter (26) before fading to finish on 51 from 78% TOG. He collected 9 disposals (6 kicks) and got them off at 78% to go with 2 marks, 2 1%ers and a behind.

Matthew Signorello ($123,900 MID/FWD) got 4 disposals for the afternoon but with none hitting the target to go with his 3 clangers, no surprise he only ended up on 13 points and can thank his 3 tackles for those points.

Darcy Fogarty ($153,00 MID/FWD) was an expected top draft pick that slid due to an injured 2017 season. Other than a mark and kick for goal (which converted), he just managed 1 tackle as his only other stat and finished on 12 points from 37% TOG.

Paul Hunter ($123,900 RUC) had 57% TOG but just couldn’t get involved and just got to double figures with 11 points from 3 disposals and 2 hitouts.

Sam Draper ($123,900 RUC) was picked up 2 years ago as a project ruckman and was given backup duties for the afternoon. Only had 51% TOG but manged to put up a respectable 46 points from 11 hitouts, 6 disposals (2 kicks), 3 tackles and 2 1%ers.

Jake Long ($149,500 MID) was seen mostly in defence (although to be fair, that’s where the ball spent most the game) and only caught my eye when he went up for a contested mark and got crunched between two Tigers before getting up and attacking the loose ball otherwise just 5 disposals (2 kicks) at 80% DE. He gave away 3 free kicks reducing what would have been 19 points from 46% TOG down to only 7 points for the outing.

Bailey Banfield ($123,400 MID) won Claremonts B&F in 2017 and was un-sighted in the first half which is probably explained by his 39% TOG. Ball magnet in the WAFL and has an AFL ready body he exploded in second half yet remained composed in all of his 11 disposals (6 kicks) at 86% DE. Very classy in front of goals he put 2 through the big sticks, took 5 marks and laid 2 tackles. Almost single handily took Fremantle over the line and was rewarded with a whopping 97 points (yes, off 39% TOG) and if he can emulate that performance he will find himself with a much earlier than anticipated AFL debut.

Andrew Brayshaw ($198,300 MID) came straight out and looked at home as he finished the first quarter with 4 contested possessions (#1 on ground) to go with 6 disposals (100% DE), 1 mark and a goal assist for 30 points. Struggled to find the ball in the 2nd but held his ground going head-to-head with M.Crouch for experience and walked away with 14 disposals (6 kicks) at 86% DE to go with 2 marks, 6 tackles and a goal assist at the end of the final siren. Finishing up on 86 points from only 66% he will find himself in many more SuperCoach teams come Rd1. Rightly so.

Lloyd Meek ($117,300 RUC) got the ruck duties for the final quarter when Sandilands went off. In his 36% TOG he just got the 1 disposal (1 kick) and 4 hitouts but his pressure on the ball was great and managed to lay 5 tackles to scrape his way to 21 points. Looks to be behind Darcy in the ruck stocks at Fremantle and will build his fitness base in the WAFL.

Stefan Giro ($102,400 MID) was Fremantles second last pick in the rookie draft last year and showed a bit of X-factor in the AFLX. The 18yr old kid can run and finished 2nd in Fremantles latest 2km time trial. Came on after half time for 4 disposals (3 kicks) and a tackle (free kick for) for 20 points off 39% TOG but is very small when surrounded by AFL bodies.

Bayley Fritsch ($117,300 FWD) hit the scoreboard in the first quarter reading the ball well at the back of a pack and snapping a goal. It didn’t stop there and he ended up being the top goal scorer for Melbourne with 3 goals and 2 behinds. Looked very composed up front and took 6 marks to accompany his 11 disposals (8 kicks) at 73% DE. He did himself no harm is getting a Rd1 debut and most likely would have played in 2017 had he been on the senior list and finished up his first JLT game with 69 points.

Luke Davies-Uniacke ($189,300 MID) was barley sighted in the first quarter but slowly worked his way into the game as it went on. Struggled to hit the target overall and only 58% of his 12 disposals (3 kicks) hit the target and he ended up with 2 clangers. His score was boosted to 51 points due to his CP and finished with the second most from North Melbourne at 8 but needs to hit those targets if he’s just handballing it out from a congestion – doesn’t seem to have explosive pace and he can’t find the space to kick it. Will be much better for getting his first senior game out of the way.

Ben Jacobs ($200,100 MID) just sneaks in as a “rookie” as it’s been a year and a half without having a game. He played just the first half but looks very fit and finished on 45 points. Doing what he does best, he played a shutdown role on Oliver and held him back successfully whilst racking up 6 tackles to go with 5 disposals (80% contested). Best 22 but only good for about a 65 average but has shown he can score with triple figure scores in the past, especially with the tackle numbers he can achieve, one of those games early in the year and you would be laughing.

Cameron Zurhaar ($190,200 FWD) got a small run but only spent 42% TOG. He did manage to kick a goal and get 7 disposals in that time though and ended up on 30 points. Looks like my quote of “Fun name, not so fun points” still stands in 2018.

Mitchell Hibberd ($169,300 DEF) much like last year, just struggled to find the ball and only got to 25 points – 41% TOG doesn’t help either. These North rookies in a “rebuild” are atrocious.

Ben McKay ($192,400 FWD) got 60% TOG but was barley seen with 3 disposals and 17 points pretty much summing up his hitout .

Nick Larkey ($123,900 FWD) goes like the rest of the rookies with low TOG (40%) and was very quiet with a singular goal getting him to 9 points.

Dom Barry ($123,900 MID) did everything he needed to do to cement a spot in Ports Rd1 team after the wraps from the coaches a month ago. Leading the disposal count for Port Adelaide, he racked up 20 (8 kicks) and despite getting them off at only 55%, he still forced his way to 98 points. Laying 4 tackles, he also had 4 rebound 50s (2nd most for Port behind Pittard), 3 tackles and a goal. Perfect replacement in the team for the departed Jarman Impey.

Jack Trengrove ($162,700 MID) ventured his way to Port during the trade period as they lost Jackson Trengrove, so a fitting replacement on name sakes I guess? Only spent half the game on the ground however he did manage to collect 11 disposals (7 kicks), 3 marks and 3 tackles for 48 points but gave away 3 free kicks which pulled his score down. Trengrove averaged 88 points (19 games) in his second year however has never got back to those heights and only played 7 games in the last 3 years. With the depth of Ports midfield, he will struggle to push for early games without injuries.

Joe Atley ($180,900 MID) was suppose to be my surprise packet rookie last year however didn’t break into the side until the end of the season which has now inflated his price. He had 11 disposals (3 kicks) in 60% TOG but had 6 clangers (4 free kicks) which heavily punished his score dropping it to just 25 (as opposed to a possible 65).

Peter Ladhams ($123,900 FWD) had impeccable DE (100%) but unfortunately that was just for 2 disposals. With just 4 hitouts and 2 clangers as his only other stats, it’s no wonder he only scored 9 points.

Ryan Garthwaite ($123,900 DEF) was picked up in 2016 draft and put on the tiger jumper for the first time. Playing a rebound 50 role with stints in the ruck, he impressed with 10 disposals (6 kicks) at 90% DE to go with 3 marks, 5 hitouts and a second team high of 6 1%ers all for a rather tidy 71 points from only 69% TOG. Could slot in for early games with Broads 3 game suspension so would be a risky pick up if named – although take that with a grain of salt, I missed Houston last year for the same reason, if they play well they’ll keep their spot. Lessons learnt.

Mabior Chol ($123,000 FWD) got the number 1 ruck duties for the afternoon after Nankervis hit his head on the turf causing probable concussion but with the “no risk” approach of pre-season games the diagnosis didn’t matter. He opted to stay on the ground at centre bounces as a forth midfielder more often than not and only managed 10 of the 60 hitouts for the afternoon. 7 disposals (4 kicks), 2 tackles and a goal helped him to 47 points from only 60% TOG.

Jack Higgins ($130,800 FWD/MID) was touted by Champion Data as a potential #1 draft pick after beating Tom Rockliffs TAC cup record with a SuperCoach average of 145 points. Sliding all the way to Richmond in the first round of the draft gave him a very SuperCoach friendly rookie price tag and made him go into the JLT Series as the number 1 most picked forward rookie. He only had 12% TOG up til the main break before getting an extended run in the last half (particularly when Dusty was rested) to lift his total TOG to 44%. Unfortunately he only managed 5 touches and ended up with the lowest DE on the ground (40%) and 24 points. 3 various coaches at Richmond have said it’s a long shot he lines up Rd1 and with a performance like that, it’s hard to see him pushing anyone out of the reigning premierships Rd1 team – best go shopping elsewhere coaches.

Thomas Cole ($170400 DEF) lead the rebound 50s for Wet Toast (3) on his way to be the highest scoring Eagles rookie with 62 points. He had 13 disposals across the backline and favoured the foot, getting away 9 kicks at 92% DE.

Jake Waterman ($123,900 FWD) was the highest scoring FWD rookie the Eagles bought along with 50 points despite losing 20 due to clangers. Spent 72% TOG for 9 disposals (3 kicks) at 78% DE, 2 marks, 2 tackles and a goal. He was picked up by the Eagles in the 2016 draft however was sidelined most of last year with a foot injury before getting 7 games in the WAFL at the end of the season. Was listed as a senior emergency in RD23 and will look to push senior selection early in 2018.

Liam Ryan ($117,300 FWD) got the game rolling with the first goal of the afternoon. Playing the small forward role he just got the 7 disposals, which include a couple of cheap ones when he came up onto the wing for a bit of run. He ended up with 45 points from 80% TOG courtesy of his contested possessions (50%) and 3 tackles, however 4 clangers (free kick push in the backs from miss timed jump mark attempts) and a DE of 57% held him back. For most of the game he looked far more interested in taking mark of the year than playing as a small forward and the commentators mentioned he’s likely to get a stern talking to the first time he tries to do that to JJK and spoils a mark. He has potential, but likely to be an up/down scorer so a most definite bench option against a top 4 team.

Frances Watson ($123,900 DEF) forced his way into my team last year (albeit by accident) and got off 8 disposals (6 kicks) at 75% DE for 41 points. Other than 3 marks, 3 clangers and a 1%er, he didn’t record any other major point scoring stat however with only 48% TOG, he scored reasonably well across the half back.

Brayden Ainsworth ($117,300 MID) was one of the several WA boys targeted by the Eagles in Rd2 of last years draft. Only spent 44% TOG but got 6 disposals (3 kicks), 4 contested possessions, 3 marks, 2 clearances and 2 tackles for 39 points. Plays as an in-and-under midfielder and sees himself as the replacement for Priddis with a pre-season or two under his belt.

Daniel Venables ($123,900 FWD) spent 74% TOG but struggled to get near the ball and just had 5 disposals for the afternoon. Luckily for him, 2 were contested and then all hit he target getting him to 30 points, but otherwise a rather lackluster effort around the ground.


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27 thoughts on “JLT Rookie Review – Weekend 1”

  1. That is a masterpiece Hutta, but a little worrying. Every preseason the rookies all fail as the JLT approaches and starts. Either they get injured or simply aren’t AFL ready.

    You could create a rookie formula stating the number of playing rookies is inversely proportional to the days left until the season starts.


    1. After Rd1 last year I mentioned that only 6 rookies scored 60+ compared to 22 the previous year. GC/GWS and Essendon days of rookies are gone.


  2. Fyfe, Brayshaw and Banfield filling midfield spots?

    T/U: It’ll work out if they’re upgraded come the byes.
    T/D: Crazy. Gotta choose Brayshaw or Banfield.


    1. When planning for the byes, just worry about premiums. Rookies that start in Rd1 will be well and truly gone from SC teams by then.


  3. Great work Hutta. Still plenty of games to go, but it’s looking like there’s going to be a few midpricers in my forward line…


    1. Fwd looking thin, especially with Higgins and Ahern (who I think will build up time in the VFL first) needing to be replaced from most teams. The WCE trio are iffy for me, but we’ll see. We’ll know which rookies are in the frame this weekend and the last weekend should give us an indication as teams push full 22.


  4. Great extensive Rookie review Hutta.

    Good to finally to find the time to give your article a read as it is not as if you have Reviewed 1 or 2 Rookies from each Club. You just put heap of work in watching and researching the lazy 33 that played on the weekend.


    1. Look TDA, I’m willing to take one for the team and sit in front of the TV all weekend with a beer in one hand, with a pen/paper in the other just to get these done.


  5. Hutta – Got a bit excited but then realised Brayden Ainsworth is a Mid only. You may have his position confused with Ben Ainsworth.


  6. To make matters worse, Oshea didn’t make the cut for tomorrows match. Fingers crossed they’re resting him for next week.



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