Main content

Tomorrow's Heroes: Tasmanian gun set to land at North

Tomorrow's Heroes: Tarryn Thomas The hard-running playmaker has a touch of class

IN 2016, Tarryn Thomas achieved an unprecedented feat when he was named Tasmania's best player in the under-16s and under-18 championships.

That was two years before he was eligible for the NAB AFL Draft, and since then Thomas has been the subject of plenty of discussion as a member of North Melbourne's Next Generation Academy.

NAB AFL DRAFT HUB Latest news, video and more

Thomas qualifies to join North through the NGA as an indigenous prospect in the Roos' Tasmanian zone.

He moved from Sydney, where he grew up in rugby league heartland, when he was 12 with family to Tasmania where his football ambitions took shape.

PHANTOM FORM GUIDE Cal Twomey's latest update

Look at how Thomas played in the Academy series at the start of the season to see why he appeals. Thomas was playing against a lower level of opposition, but dominated and claimed the Harrison Medal as the best player in the carnival.

When up and going, the 188cm prospect plays as a midfielder who can push forward and hit the scoreboard – something he showed when he kicked five goals against the GWS Academy earlier in the year. His skills are strong, and his rugby background comes through in his attack on the ball and tackling pressure.

After a flat spot during the middle of the season, he returned to North Launceston's senior line-up and was crucial in its Grand Final win, showcasing his ability with two exciting high marks close to goal and being named third best afield.

Thomas' division one championships for the Allies wasn't at the same standard as his form for Tasmania, although he still managed to average 16 disposals across the four games while dealing with a thumb injury that hampered his output.

He will need to build his athleticism to be able to play in the midfield at the top level – he tested in the bottom 10 per cent for the YoYo test and bottom 35 per cent for the sprint (3.14 seconds) and 2km time trial (6:57 minutes) at the Draft Combine.

Clubs who rate Thomas highly believe he has the talent to turn into a Shaun Burgoyne type of player, who can move around the ground and make an impact in a number of roles.

North will be hoping a bid doesn't come inside the first 10 picks of the draft, although the Roos did accumulate extra draft points during the trade period to ensure they can match a rival bid for Thomas.

INDICATIVE DRAFT ORDER Your club's latest picks

Thomas was seen as a possible top-five pick at the start of the year for a reason. He'll need to sharpen up some areas but can hurt teams within minimal fuss.