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Boss Orange Cutter
Apr 14, 2018
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Geelong Cats chief executive Steve Hocking fires parting shot at new Fremantle Dockers recruit Jordan Clark
Samantha RogersThe West Australian
Tue, 26 October 2021 9:21AM

Jordan Clark. Credit: Quinn Rooney/via AFL Photos

Geelong chief executive Steve Hocking has fired a brutal parting shot at ex-Cat Jordan Clark, who was traded to Fremantle after a lack of opportunity at his former club.
Clark landed at the Dockers in exchange for pick 22 and a future third-round selection, along with a future fourth-round pick in this year’s trade period.
The Albany junior, who was selected at pick 15 in the 2018 draft, played 32 games for Geelong (including 11 this season) but did not feature as the Cats looked to experience over youth in their failed finals campaign.
Chris Scott’s side were thrashed but a Melbourne team brimming with young talent in the preliminary final at Optus Stadium - including WA’s Luke Jackson, Trent Rivers and Kysaiah Pickett.
Jordan Clark. Credit: Dylan Burns/AFL Photos
Defender Jake Bowey also got the nod ahead veteran players in the Demons’ grand final side in what was just his seventh AFL game.
Hocking said the premiers were a good example of how clubs can find a good mix between youth and experience, but denied Geelong’s younger players had warranted the same treatment - including Clark.
“I look at Melbourne, and someone like (Demons veterans) Nathan Jones or Jake Melksham,” he told Sportsday.
“They were pushed out of the team because young players were given an opportunity and they performed at the level they’re capable of.”
Asked if Clark, 21, was a “victim” of Geelong’s preference to field older players in pursuit of immediate success, Hocking gave a scathing assessment of the former Cat.
Geelong CEO Steve Hocking.
Geelong CEO Steve Hocking. Credit: Michael Willson/AFL Photos
“For our players, our younger players... you’ve got to do the work,” he said.
“If you do get an opportunity, you need to grab it with both hands and push past some of those experienced players.
“I think Melbourne have proven that, and they’re a great example of that.
“That’s the comment I would make around Jordan Clark.”
The Dockers recruit said he had “no hard feelings” towards his former club after joining Fremantle.

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Boss Orange Cutter
Apr 14, 2018
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AFL Draft 2021: Jesse Motlop and Brady Hough among the 10 best small or medium forwards in this year’s pool
Dan Batten and Jordan PintoThe Daily Telegraph
Sat, 30 October 2021 12:04PM

Does your club need a small or medium-size forward? We profile the best prospects available in this year’s pool and look at which teams each one suits best.

Does your club need a small or medium-size forward? We profile the best prospects available in this year’s pool and look at which teams each one suits best. Credit: AFL Photos

Small and medium forwards are hard to come by for AFL clubs and a host of promising goalkickers and playmakers will be on offer in the AFL Draft in November.
There has been a reluctance to take smaller forwards early in the draft in recent years but Melbourne livewire Kysaiah Pickett and high-leaping Bulldog Cody Weightman, taken at 12 and 15 respectively in the 2019 national draft, illustrates how valuable these kind of players can be to the make-up of a side.
The forward crop of this draft class features a possible top-10 pick likened to Giants dynamo Toby Greene, a unique South Australian who has played at SANFL senior level, the son of a former Port Adelaide and North Melbourne gun and the brother of a current St Kilda livewire.
Here 10 of the best small-to-medium-size forwards in the draft pool.

AFL Future Stars

Josh Rachele is one of the most skilful players in this year’s draft. Michael KleinCredit: News Corp Australia
Josh Rachele

Murray Bushrangers/Vic CountryForward/midfielder, 180cm, 78kgWhich clubs could suit: GWS, Adelaide, Richmond, Hawthorn

Rachele can change the course of a match with his magic inside 50. The dynamic forward-mid is electric when the ball hits the ground and strong overhead, playing taller than his height suggests.

The Bushrangers product opted to choose footy over soccer as a member of the Australian under-17 soccer squad, and he can certainly bend it like Beckham from all angles around goal. Rachele was among Vic Country’s best in both the trial (16 disposals, 2.3) and the Challenge match (20 disposals, one goal).

He has the ball-winning ability and power to be used as an on-baller, dominating at U16 level as an inside midfielder.

Drawing comparisons to Giants star forward Toby Greene and Robbie Gray, Rachele is an expected top 10 selection with clubs as early as GWS (holding pick two) showing a keen interest.
THE STAT: Rachele averaged the most goals per game in the NAB League (of any player that had played more than one match) and rated elite for disposals, kicks, kicking efficiency, marks and score involvements.
Arlo Draper
South Adelaide/SAForward/midfielder, 186cm, 71kgWhich clubs could suit: Fremantle, Hawthorn, Brisbane, Port Adelaide, Adelaide, West Coast
At junior level, Draper made a name for himself as a versatile midfielder, who can go forward and hit the scoreboard. He’s clean, classy and distributes well in traffic.
But it’s his ability forward of centre which sets him apart from a number of similar prospects. Draper is strong overhead and has proven he can play as a marking target inside-50.
After dominating the under-18 competition, the 186cm teenager made his senior debut for South Adelaide, finishing with 11 disposals, five marks and goal, in an impressive display across half-forward. The only question is, where is Draper’s best position at the top level?
THE STAT: Draper booted 22 goals and recorded 20 score assists in 21 SANFL under-18 matches over the past two seasons.
[IMG alt="Supplied Editorial Jesse Motlop kicks for goal for South Fremantle Picture Michael
Farnell WAFL"][/IMG]
Jesse Motlop kicking his first WAFL League goal for South Fremantle. Credit: Supplied
Jesse Motlop
South Fremantle/WA
Small forward, 176cm, 74kg
Which clubs could suit: Carlton, Hawthorn, West Coast, Fremantle, Adelaide
The son of former Port Adelaide and North Melbourne forward Daniel, Motlop is, arguably, the best pure small forward in the draft pool. The 18-year-old is quick, skilful and boasts sublime ability through traffic.
And, like his father, Motlop has brilliant goal sense. The teenager booted 9.5 in eight WAFL League games, handling the step up with ease. With just his second disposal on debut at senior level, Motlop won the ball off hands at ground level and split two Swan Districts defenders twice, before handing off to a teammate who sent the Bulldogs forward, showing his creativity further up the ground.
Motlop is part of Fremantle’s Next Generation Academy but he’s unlikely to be available after pick 40, when the Dockers would be eligible to match a bid.
THE STAT: Motlop hit the scoreboard in all but one of his eight WAFL League matches this season and booted 2.1 from 13 disposals on debut.
Sam Butler
GWV Rebels/Vic CountryForward/midfielder, 184cm, 76kgWhich clubs could suit: Geelong, Carlton, Hawthorn
Butler has some similarities to his brother, St Kilda small forward Dan, but has greater versatility and all-round athletic traits. He blitzed the Vic Country Combine in early October with four top-10 finishes nationally, showcasing his speed (2.974-second 20m sprint), endurance (6:23 2km time trial) and leap (87cm running vertical jump, 71cm vertical jump).
Butler reads the play well as a crumber inside 50, has clean hands in congestion and applies manic pressure defensively. As a midfielder, he consistently wins contested possessions and makes good decisions with the ball, highlighting his capacity to have an increased midfield role in time.
A cracked sternum sidelined Butler for both of Vic Country’s mid-season games, but he has shown enough to suggest he is a potential late first-round selection.
THE STAT: Butler ranked elite for contested possessions, goals, tackles and ranking points as a forward-mid in the NAB League.
Vic Country vs Vic Metro

Blake Howes is an athletic high-marking prospect. Michael Klein Credit: News Corp Australia
Blake Howes
Sandringham Dragons/Vic MetroMedium forward, 190cm, 79kgWhich clubs could suit: Carlton, Geelong, Melbourne, Richmond, West Coast
Howes is an athletic, high-marking prospect who has done his best work at half-forward, in a similar way to what Port Adelaide’s Miles Bergman did in his draft year.
A great size, with a penetrating kick, speed and a serious leap, Howes booted five goals for Vic Metro at the under-16 championships in 2019. He hit the scoreboard in five of his seven NAB League games this year, but his push up the ground onto a wing is what has recruiters excited.
Howes kicked two majors and had 20 disposals in his final game for the year in the new role and he’s likely to appeal to some clubs as a tall, athletic wingman at the next level.
THE STAT: He’s a weapon offensively, but Howes also rated elite in the NAB League for tackles inside-50.
Judson Clarke
Dandenong Stingrays/Vic CountryForward/midfielder, 180cm, 70kgWhich clubs could suit: Melbourne, West Coast, Geelong, Carlton, Adelaide
Clarke rose to prominence in an outstanding five-goal haul for Vic Country in the second trial game where everything he touched turned to gold. It was apt reward for his all his hard work after suffering a knee injury two years ago.
Clarke makes things happen forward of centre with his speed and scoreboard impact. He has shown a tendency to stand up in big moments, as he did in the trial game and in the Stingrays’ narrow win over Eastern in Round 5.
While Stingrays players missed out on testing at the national combine, he recorded a 6:19 2km time trial and it is believed his agility is among the best in the draft class.
THE STAT: Clarke had 22 disposals, seven marks, hit the target with 11 of his 12 kicks and slotted five goals in the second Victorian trial match.
Brady Hough
Peel Thunder/WAMedium forward/midfielder, 189cm, 71kgWhich clubs could suit: Fremantle, West Coast, Brisbane, Geelong, GWS, Hawthorn
It’s been a rapid rise for the dangerous, goalkicking midfielder, who has gone from country footballer to the draft combine and WAFL League footy in a year.
After impressive form at Colts level, where the hard-running Hough’s composure, foot skills and ability to hit the scoreboard caught the eye of many, he tallied 22 disposals, nine marks, seven intercepts and 114 ranking points in his senior debut, playing on wing.
Hough finds space forward of centre and marks well on the lead, but he’s also equally effective finding a target inside-50 himself – versatility that should bode well at the next level.
THE STAT: Booted 10.6, and averaged 20 disposals, in the first six WAFL Colts games of his career.
Cooper Murley
Norwood/SAForward/midfielder, 178cm, 69kgWhich clubs could suit:Adelaide, Melbourne, Essendon, Geelong, Carlton, Richmond
The excitement machine only managed seven non-injury affected games this season but his body of work over the previous two years is up there with the best in the draft.
As a 16-year-old, Murley averaged 23 disposals, 14 contested possessions, six tackles, five inside 50s and 138 ranking points at under-19 level in 2019. He then dominated his bottom-age year of 2020, averaging 26 disposals and booting 19 goals in 16 matches to win Norwood’s best-and-fairest in a premiership side.
He’s clean, well-balanced, wins the ball on the move and uses it well on both feet. There’s a bit of Port Adelaide young gun Zak Butters in the way Murley plays and he looks suited to a similar role at the top level.
THE STAT: Taking out his last injury-affected game in July, Murley averaged 25 disposals, 12 contested possessions, six score involvements, five clearances, five inside-50s and 132 ranking points, while also booting 29 goals, in his 26 SANFL under-18 matches over the past three years.
Vic Country vs Vic Metro

Paul Curtis kicked the second-most goals in the NAB League this year. Michael Klein Credit: News Corp Australia
Paul Curtis
Western Jets/Vic MetroSmall forward, 183cm, 73kgWhich clubs could suit: Essendon, Carlton, Adelaide, Collingwood
The Western Jets’ leading draft prospect, Curtis has been a formidable goalkicker at NAB League level and for Vic Metro this season. The small forward has terrific goal-sense, clean hands at ground level and possesses speed and agility.
Curtis averaged two goals per game in the NAB League, including a dominant 4.4 against the talent-rich Sandringham Dragons. He underlined his consistent scoreboard impact against top-notch defenders by slotting 3.5 in the Victorian trial and another three majors in the Vic Challenge clash.
Curtis has improved his endurance but it remains a work in progress, with his accuracy in front of goal another area of improvement.
THE STAT: Curtis booted 12 goals across a four-game stretch in the NAB League and finished equal-second for goals across the year.
Kai Lohmann
GWV Rebels/Vic CountryMedium forward, 185cm, 76kgWhich clubs could suit: Hawthorn, North Melbourne, West Coast
Lohmann screams X-Factor with his vertical leap, speed (recording an elite 2.986-second 20m sprint at the national combine) and agility combination, allowing him to be a dangerous threat aerially and at ground level.
His spring and overhead marking means he plays taller than his height, while he has shown the ability to turn defenders inside out on his way to goal. The exciting forward had a patchy season overall but it is these exciting traits and his upside that could see him off the board as early as the second round.
Club interest has been significant for Lohmann, one of the most interviewed Vic Country prospects throughout the year - and he has been described as a loveable larrikin off the field.
THE STAT: Lohmann collected more than 20 disposals in one of his nine matches in the NAB League yet exceeded 100 Champion Data ranking points on four occasions. This included a 120-point total.


Boss Orange Cutter
Apr 14, 2018
Just up the street
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AFL draft 2021: Claremont ruck and Fremantle Dockers NGA talent Eric Benning hopes to follow brothers into AFL
Headshot of Jordan McArdle

Jordan McArdleThe West Australian
Sun, 7 November 2021 2:00AM
Jordan McArdle

Claremont young gun Eric Benning.

Claremont young gun Eric Benning. Credit: Trevor Collens/The West Australian

It would be a dream come true for Eric Benning to land Fremantle, the club he’s supported his entire life, and follow the footsteps of his brothers into the AFL.
The Kununurra product, part of the Dockers’ Next Generation Academy, is tipped to be wearing purple by month’s end as his draft stocks rise from a likely Category-B rookie pick to genuine national draft chance.
The Sunday Times can reveal Fremantle has nominated Benning as a potential NGA selection, likewise with classy South Fremantle forward Jesse Motlop, ahead of the draft on November 24.

Five other clubs have spoken with the athletic 196cm ruck-forward and could place a bid, but Freo are able to match it if it’s outside of the top-20 picks.
Benning has seen his brothers Ash Johnson (Collingwood) and Shane McAdam (Adelaide Crows) realise their AFL dreams in the last few years.

The 18-year-old, known as ‘Roy’ to his family and friends back home because of his middle name, has leant on both for advice during his sparkling debut season of WAFL colts after moving from the Kimberley in February.
“I was watching the mid-season draft in my room and I’m very happy for Ash, he’s worked hard for the opportunity and he deserves it,” Benning said.
“I’ve been chatting to him before my games and stuff because we kind of play similar roles in the forward-line, although I’ve got him covered for height.
“I always ask him what I need to do, mentally and physically, whether that’s prepping for games in the days before and how he plays his role and how I can improve my game.
Shane McAdam and I have the same mum, so it’s pretty good to have him in the AFL as well, making mum proud.”
It’s been a remarkable rise for Benning, who was playing for his local club Waringarri Crows in the West Kimberley league a little over a year ago before deciding to head south.

He grew in confidence as the WAFL colts season went on to earn a trio of State 19s games against South Australia and a draft combine invite.

He had a great finals series for Claremont playing mainly in the ruck and turned the colts grand final in their favour with a massive third quarter before his side fell short against Swan Districts.
Off the field he’s kicking goals as well, studying a Bachelor of Sports Science at UWA.

“I’ve always wanted to do this from a young age, come and play footy down in Perth,” Benning said.

“Last year I was playing local footy back home in Kununurra for the Waringarri Crows and decided I needed to move down.
“My family has been a big support with it all.
“I started down here in February and didn’t do much of a pre-season which wasn’t the best but I really pushed myself at training to get to the level required.
“I’m just very grateful for everything I’ve done this year.
“I’ve done a lot, making the State team and playing all three games, getting a combine invite and playing in a colts grand final.
“Getting to play at Optus Stadium two weeks in a row was a real highlight, for the State then the grand final even though we didn’t get the win.”
Benning at Claremont Oval.

Benning at Claremont Oval. Credit: Trevor Collens/The West Australian
Benning speaks glowingly about his time at the Dockers and the influence of NGA coaches past and present - Tendai Mzungu and Roger Hayden respectively - over the last three years.
Freo has had a history of rewarding academy players, especially from Benning’s home region of the Kimberley with Jason Carter (Wyndham), Leno Thomas (Warmun), Liam Henry (Derby) and Isaiah Butters (Halls Creek) all graduates.
Roger Hayden has been a big help for me throughout the year, always checking up on me and stuff,” Benning said.
“It’s been a really good experience, being part of the NGA program.
“Tendai before his changed positions was another big help, I remember him coming up to Kununurra. That’s when I first got involved with the NGA program about three years ago.
“Roger and Tendai always wanted to get me down here pretty early but things didn’t go to plan.
“(Claremont talent manager) Jordan Smith has been another one who’s helped a lot.”
Benning’s manager, Tom Seccull of Hemisphere, said feedback from AFL recruiters was that the exciting tall was a “perfect” NGA pick.

WA Football Commission State talent manager Adam Jones expects a rival club to “definite” bid on him and make the Dockers earn him.
“He’ll definitely go. I reckon a club will definitely bid on him and I certainly think the eagerness for him has been growing as the year has gone on,” Jones said.
“His last month of the season was just outstanding. Showed some awesome signs in our first champs game with his marking and clean hands below his knees.
“Throughout finals for Claremont and in our AFL grand final curtain raiser, the finish to some of his games were exceptional.
“He showed a real competitiveness and real desire to try and help the team win.
“The fact that he’s only been in Perth for under 12 months, from Kununurra... he’s a top quality kid.
“He’s a really exciting prospect and we expect him to end up at Freo as part of their Next Generation Academy, barring a bid doesn’t come inside the top 20.”

stax on the mull

Premiership Player
Dec 26, 2010
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The quotes come straight from Channel 7 interview. Doesn't seem as alarming when you hear him talking about it.

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Boss Orange Cutter
Apr 14, 2018
Just up the street
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Nat Fyfe: Specialist Dr Clay Golledge provides update on injured Fremantle Dockers captain’s shoulder
Headshot of Craig O'Donoghue

Craig O'DonoghueThe West Australian
Thu, 11 November 2021 6:50PM
Craig O'Donoghue

Fremantle captain Nat Fyfe is fighting to recover from multiple shoulder surgeries and an infection.

Fremantle captain Nat Fyfe is fighting to recover from multiple shoulder surgeries and an infection.Credit: Will Russell/AFL Photos

Scans and tests have cleared Fremantle captain Nat Fyfe to end his course of intravenous antibiotics and begin the slow recovery from shoulder surgery, but the man helping him to beat an infection admits the Brownlow medallist is unlikely to be available for round one.
Fyfe outlined his battle this week, describing the plight as “pretty grim” following a second bout of shoulder surgery.
WA surgeon Peter D’Alessandro discovered an infection, Cutibacteriun, which had been laying dormant in Fyfe’s shoulder since an operation in Melbourne during July and prevented his body from healing.
He has since been treated daily by infectious disease expert Dr Clay Golledge, but investigations on Wednesday produced positive news.
“Everything is healing beautifully and everything is in the right place,” Dr Golledge told The West Australian.
“All his blood tests are good and he’s feeling really comfortable. He’s coming out of his sling and doing gentle exercises.
Nat Fyfe’s original surgery in Melbourne in July didn’t go as planned.

Nat Fyfe’s original surgery in Melbourne in July didn’t go as planned. Credit: Nat Fyfe Instagram/TheWest
“Everything is progressing really well and we’re hoping to cease the intravenous antibiotics within the next few days. What we will try and do is leave him on long term antibiotics probably right throughout the whole season.
“We’ll step down from intravenous to oral in the next few days. Those oral antibiotics will be a really high dose. The plan will to be on a high dose for couple more months and look to drop down to a lower dose.
“We’re very confident we’ll be able to suppress this infection and hopefully cure it once and for all.
“I’ve been hearing all sorts of stuff on social media that it’s a resistant bug that is hard to treat and it will destroy his joint. It’s none of those things.”
Fyfe will continue to have regular scans and faces a significant challenge to re-build both his body and his fitness.
Nat Fyfe has been living with an IV in his arm but that treatment will end in the coming days.

Nat Fyfe has been living with an IV in his arm but that treatment will end in the coming days. Credit: 7NEWS/7NEWS
The 30-year-old hasn’t run for four months and hasn’t been allowed to exercise while receiving the intravenous treatment.
Dr Golledge described Fyfe as “the most determined and toughest guy you will find” but admitted everything needed to go right for him to be available for round one.
“He’d be at least 12 weeks away from doing significant contact stuff. It would be very ambitious that he’d be ready for round one,” Dr Golledge said.
Fyfe’s injury prompted three-time Essendon premiership star Tim Watson to declare he shouldn’t be captain.
Watson said Fyfe needed to concentrate on his recovery.
“There’s no way known that he’s going to be the captain of Fremantle next season,” Watson told SEN.
“How can you be under those circumstances? How can you be captain?
“He hasn’t run for four months, he hasn’t got back to training yet. He’s that far behind.
“His ability to get out there and play is going to affect his leadership.”

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