AFL Talent Ambassador Kevin Sheehan has revealed the 2019 NAB AFL Under-18 All Australian Team following Wednesday’s conclusion of the NAB AFL Under-18 Championships.
Eleven NAB League Boys players appear in the 23-man All Australian Team – seven of which come from Vic Country, three from Vic Metro and one from the Allies, with a further two Allies players coming from the northern-state academy teams that participated in this year’s NAB League competition from Round 2-6.
See the full AFL Under-18 All Australian Team with comments from Kevin Sheehan on each player below.
FULL BACK LINE
Connor Budarick (Allies / Gold Coast Suns Academy): Small midfielder /defender with outstanding speed /endurance combination and skill set which allowed him to play multiple roles on different types of opponents. Won the Hunter Harrison Medal in the Academy Series and backed it up with strong performances for the Allies averaging 15.5 disposals and 9.5 tackles across the championships.
Sam De Koning (Vic Country / Dandenong Stingrays): Tall defender who is very athlete and mobile and makes good decisions on when to mark and when to spoil. Strong overhead and with plenty of dash he averaged 12.5 disposals at 80% efficiency and 4.8 marks to control his position throughout the championships.
Will Gould (South Australia): Medium defender who lead his state very well and showed he is a very composed player under pressure. Strong in his attack on the ball and a good user by hand and foot he provided consistent rebound for his team throughout the championships and is now a back to back All Australian at Under 18s level. Averaged 21.5 disposals, 4.5 marks and 7.2 rebound 50s.
HALF BACK LINE
Hayden Young (Vic Country / Dandenong Stingrays): Medium defender who is an outstanding aerialist as an intercept mark across half back. Neat user of the ball particularly on his preferred left foot and good decision maker and user by hand. Natural leader who helped set up his team behind the ball and team-oriented player. Averaged 22 disposals (79.5% efficiency), 5.2 marks and 4.5 rebound 50s across the championships.
Fischer McAsey (Vic Metro / Sandringham Dragons): Tall defender whose consistent and courageous intercept and pack marking was a feature for Victoria Metro. Showed great decision-making ability in contested situation on when to mark or spoil and controlled his position throughout the championships. A one touch player he used the ball particularly well by foot hitting up targets further afield. Averaged 14.5 disposals (74% efficiency) and 6.5 marks winning his team MVP award.
Lachlan Ash (Vic Country / Murray Bushrangers): Medium defender with line breaking speed who reads the ball coming into defence exceptionally well and either intercept mark or link up with teammates to outnumber and provided rebound and overlap. Co-captain of Victoria Country he provide his team with strong direction and purpose across the championship averaging 23 disposals (16.5 uncontested) and 5 marks.
Noah Anderson (Vic Metro / Oakleigh Chargers): Medium midfielder/forward whose repeat efforts are elite using his game sense and ball winning ability to impact games. Victoria Metro’s captain, he was a super competitive player throughout the championships averaging 23.5 disposals (10.8 contested) and 5.2 clearances. His 27 possessions and 2 goals in a best on ground performance against South Australia was a highlight.
Deven Robertson (Western Australia): Medium midfielder who captained Western Australia exceptionally well with his team first and selfless play a highlight. An exceptional reader of the play with clean hands and great vision he consistently won the ball throughout the championships averaging 30 disposals (including 11.8 contested) 6.8 tackles and 4.8 clearances. Won his team’s MVP and the Larke Medal as the best and fairest player in the Championships.
Mitch O’Neill (Allies / Tasmania Devils): Medium midfielder who is a prolific ball winner with ability to find space in tight situations and use his elite agility to burst into the clear. Courageous and clean overhead and a long penetrating kick he averaged 22.2 disposals (74% efficiency) and 5.5 marks to become a back to back All Australian at Under 18s level.
HALF FORWARD LINE
Sam Flanders (Vic Country / Gippsland Power): Powerful medium forward/ midfielder who really impacted matches with his contested ball winning ability and strength in the one on one contests. Strong overhead and with a good burst away from stoppage he was an ultra-consistent performer for Victoria Country averaging 22.5 disposals, 4.5 marks, 4.5 clearances and 6 tackles across the championships.
Elijah Taylor (Western Australia): Elusive medium forward who has an impressive natural leap, clean hands overhead and innate goal sense. A very good kick on his right and left foot, he is a mercurial type of player who can create something from nothing. Averaged 12.2 disposals and 1.5 goals to be one of the most dangerous players up forward in the championships.
Jackson Mead (South Australia): Medium forward/midfielder who is strong and hard in the contest and courageous in his attack on the ball. Good overhead for his size and an excellent decision maker with the ball in hand, he is a prolific ball winner who averaged 21.2 disposals and 3 clearances and 5 tackles across the championships.
Caleb Serong (Vic Country / Gippsland Power): Small midfielder/forward who is a one touch player at ground level and overhead with exceptional game sense and footy smarts. A prolific ball winner and excellent penetrating kick he had an excellent championships averaging 23.5 disposals, 5.5 marks, 5.2 clearances and 8.5 tackles and winning his team’s MVP award.
Brodie Kemp (Vic Country / Bendigo Pioneers): Tall forward or defender who performed strongly down back in the initial rounds of the championships then went forward to great effect showing great composure in kicking the winning goal against South Australia in round 4 with the last kick of the day. Averaged 20 disposals and 6.5 marks to be a key player for Victoria Country, with his overhead marking and precision kicking features of his play.
Liam Henry (Western Australia): Small forward /midfielder with speed and elusiveness at the elite level. A player difficult to contain, he was outstanding in Western Australia’s exciting win over Victoria Country to take out the title. Uses the ball well by hand and foot and he averaged 17.5 disposals, 5.2 marks and 4 tackles across the championships.
Luke Jackson (Western Australia): Ruckman/tall forward with a great natural leap who dominated at centre bounce stoppages throughout the championships, providing his teammates with first use of the ball on many occasions. His follow up work at ground level to win the ball or provide support for his team was outstanding as he averaged 14.5 disposals (11 contested), 36.8 hit outs, 4.5 clearances and 2.8 tackles. Runner up in the Larke Medal.
Tom Green (Allies / GWS Giants Academy): Big bodied medium midfielder who excels at stoppages using his clean hands and vision to set up his teammates on the outside. Prolific ball winner who captained the Allies averaging 23.8 disposals (16.2 contested), 8 clearances and 4.2 tackles and winning his team’s MVP award.
Matthew Rowell (Vic Metro / Oakleigh Chargers): Small midfielder who excels at stoppages with his relentless attack on the ball, clean hands and exceptional vision. Ultra-consistent player who averaged 24.8 disposals (50% contested), 5.2 clearances and 6 tackles giving him a strong return in the championships.
Harry Schoenberg (South Australia): Medium midfielder who wins the ball exceptionally well in traffic and is very creative particularly by hand, using his elite decision making and vision to great effect. Prolific ball winner for South Australia averaging 27 disposals, 4.8 tackles and 5.8 clearances to win his team’s MVP award.
Jeremy Sharp (Western Australia): Outside medium midfielder with speed and he is a long penetrating kick. Averaged 21 disposals (15.8 uncontested) as he linked up to help his team outnumber the opposition throughout the championships. Now a back to back All Australian at Under 18s level.
Trent Rivers (Western Australia): Medium defender who provided consistent rebound for his team with his dash and long kicking from defence. Averaged 21.8 disposals at 77% efficiency and 5 marks as he consistently worked hard to outnumber the opposition and provide a handball receive option for his team to penetrate inside 50.
Cody Weightman (Vic Country / Dandenong Stingrays): Small forward with powerful burst off the mark and very strong in the air and in one on one situations. Has innate goal sense kicking 4 goals against the Allies and South Australia, averaging 11 disposals and 2.2 goals across the championships.
Dylan Stephens (South Australia): Medium midfielder who is a prolific ball winner and creative user of the ball by hand and foot. Played on the wing and at times on the inside in the centre of the ground where he set up many forward moves for his team. A penetrating left footer, he averaged 23.8 disposals, 2.8 clearances and 4.2 tackles across the championships.
Peter Sumich (Western Australia)
Deven Robertson (Western Australia)
Kevin Sheehan (Chairman – AFL)
Jason Taylor (Melbourne)
Ross Monaghan (Sydney)
Rob Forster-Knight (Essendon)
Dale Harris (Carlton)