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Callum Twomey  September 12, 2013 12:03 PM

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Sam Durdin

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PROMISING South Australian draft hopeful Sam Durdin has been recognised for his talent by winning a prestigious award.  

Durdin was named the recipient of the Alan Schwab-Jack Collins AFL Life Members Educational Scholarship, which is given to an outstanding young prospect each year to help him with his education in the next 12 months as he focuses on an AFL career.

The 17-year-old is eligible for the 2014 NAB AFL Draft, and is highly rated after being selected in the AIS-AFL Academy Squad.

Durdin hails from Halidon, a small town four hours out of Adelaide in the Mallee.

He was presented with the award by former Carlton champion John Nicholls at the MCG on Thursday.

Other retired stars, like Essendon ruckman Simon Madden, Melbourne's Ron Barassi and Footscray and North Melbourne big man Gary Dempsey, were also in attendance.

"He's an outstanding young boy who travelled to New Zealand earlier this year as part of the AIS-AFL Academy program," said Kevin Sheehan, the AFL's national talent manager.

"We think he has elite AFL potential. He showed his versatility and potential as a member of South Australia's division one winning team at the NAB AFL Under-18 Championships.

"We were delighted to nominate him with the support of the AFL life members."

The 196cm mobile ruckman played four games at the championships.

Durdin follows highly touted midfielder James Aish in winning the scholarship.

Previous winners in its 25-year history include Lachie Whitfield, Joel Selwood and Nic Naitanui.

Twitter: @AFL_CalTwomey