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On the rise: Zach Tuohy

Zach Tuohy is primed for a big 2013 campaign - ${keywords}
Zach Tuohy is primed for a big 2013 campaign


On the rise:
Zach Tuohy

At a glance: After gaining valuable experience in his two seasons at AFL level, the long-kicking, bustling Irishman appears capable of making a significant leap in performance in 2013. Particularly under new coach Mick Malthouse, who will be keen to turn Tuohy into a more complete player by strengthening his defensive skills while trying to capitalise on his natural attacking instincts. Plays with an urgency and vigour that complements his strong 187cm, 91kg frame, and appears certain to be a key component in Malthouse's defensive blueprint. Played 19 games in 2012 for a career total of 30 and was one of the few regular members of the Blues' backline in an unsettled line-up. Didn't have as big an impact as many Blues fans had hoped, but seems well placed to do just that in his third season.

Plays like: Irish compatriot Tadhg Kennelly, although at this stage is rougher around the edges. Has shown he can set up play with his running and penetration from the back half, but with experience and greater decision-making and composure, he could become a game-breaker like Kennelly.

Killer quality: His sheer power – in bursting through packs and especially in his kicking. Tuohy is probably the best kick among the Irish imports to play the game and can also unleash the odd ball-bursting torpedo into the centre of the ground. Also capable of drilling goals from outside 50.

Best performance: Produced one of his best games in the 10-goal win over Collingwood in round three at the MCG. Provided terrific run, was uncompromising in his attack on the contest and even drifted forward early to nail a goal from outside 50. Had just 11 touches but showed just how valuable he can be in a cohesive team.

What they say: "He just keeps improving. He is not only a fast learner, he is a beautiful kick of the ball. He has worked on his game, but not really his kicking. They have put some work into his kicking, but he is really a natural at it. He has plenty of power and penetration, and not only does he hit targets but he is a beautiful long kick. He is a pretty solid boy and he's extremely quick and he's a good size, so he has some terrific attributes, so he has a bit of everything" – Gavin Brown, Carlton assistant coach, April 2012.

Stats that matter:
Fourth in rebounds 50s (42 @ 2.2 per game)
Tenth in long kicks (45 @ 2.4 per game)
The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs