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Top prospect kicks perfect score at Combine

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AFL 2017 Media - AFL Draft Combine Day 1

Connor Ballenden in action at the NAB AFL Draft Combine

BRISBANE Lions academy prospect Connor Ballenden showed his excellent foot skills for a key position prospect by posting a perfect score in the kicking test at the NAB AFL Draft Combine.

The 199cm teenager, who could attract a top-20 bid on draft night next month, had a perfect score with his six kicks, recording a 30/30 total. 

He was the only player to ace the kicking test, which sees prospects kick to targets at different distances on their preferred and non-preferred foot.

Jack Higgins, Angus Schumacher, Jack Payne, Hayden McLean, Jackson Ross and Ned Reeves all scored 29 to be among the best performed as the testing got underway at Etihad Stadium on Wednesday night. 

Ballenden had an inconsistent year and has been used in a number of different roles throughout the season – including in the ruck and across half-back – after starting the year viewed as a possible top-five selection. 

Schumacher was also prominent in the goalkicking test, with the Bendigo Pioneers midfielder one of four players to record perfect scores with their five shots. 

Jordan Houlahan, Ben Miller and Ross were the others to go through the test without missing a goal, including kicks on the run, as set shots and on their non-preferred side. 

Ballenden kicked four goals from five shots, while possible top-10 pick Andrew Brayshaw was also one of seven prospects to kick four goals and a behind from his five attempts.

The athletic screening will begin on Thursday, with jumps, sprints and the new 'Yo-yo' test to take place across the day.

STANDOUT PERFORMERS

Goalkicking test (score out of 30)
Jordan Houlahan 30
Angus Schumacher 30
Jackson Ross 30
Ben Miller 30
Jake Patmore 25
Ryley Stoddart 25
Changkuoth Jiath 25
Andrew Brayshaw 25
Connor Ballenden 25
Aaron Naughton 25
Aiden Bonar 25 

Kicking test (score out of 30)
Connor Ballenden 30
Jack Higgins 29
Angus Schumacher 29
Jack Payne 29
Hayden McLean 29
Jackson Ross 29
Ned Reeves 29
Jordan Houlahan 28
Hunter Clark 28
Lloyd Meek 28