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Our best youngsters: Where are they now?

What has happened to the 2001 Under 18 All-Australian team in 2002.


Lewis Roberts-Thomson – Sydney
Claimed under the developing markets rule, Roberts-Thomson was one of the most sought after big men when Sydney pounced on him before the National Draft. Yet to make his AFL debut, due to some knee problems, although new Swans coach Paul Roos has hinted that he is likely to make his debut by the end of the year. Has a big future.

Daniel Elstone – Hawthorn
Taken at No. 20 in the National Draft, Elstone won the Bendigo Pioneers best and fairest award last year, but represented his state-of-origin NSW/ACT in the Under 18 championships. Has yet to make his debut for Hawthorn, but has shown some good form for the Box Hill Hawks at VFL level.

Northern Territory

Xavier Clarke – St Kilda
Highly sought after midfielder before the National Draft, Clarke was claimed at No. 5, St Kilda’s second selection, in the National Draft. A class act, Clarke has played 10 games so far in 2002 and has already received a Rising Star nomination after his effort against Melbourne in round seven. He is one of the Saints’ most promising youngsters.


David Hale – Kangaroos
After shining for Queensland in the championships, Hale was one of the most highly sought-after big men, with last year’s crop producing few genuine talls. He was taken with the Kangaroos’ first selection (No. 7), but looms as a long-term investment for the Roos. Has yet to play in the seniors, but is honing his craft with the Murray Kangaroos.

South Australia

Mark Jamar – Melbourne
Jamar was a shining light in South Australia’s disappointing efforts in the championships last year, but was surprisingly overlooked for the National Draft, considering the dearth of ruckman on offer. He was claimed at No. 6 in the Rookie Draft by Melbourne. While he shows promise, injury problems and suspension have interrupted his season.


Nathan Street – Tasmania
While Street shone for Tasmania in last year’s championships, he was surprisingly overlooked in the National and Rookie Drafts. Hailing from Glenorchy, Street has stayed in his native state to play with the Tasmanian Devils, where he has played seniors in the VFL competition. He is the younger brother of Geelong ruckman Peter.

Tom Davidson – Collingwood
Won the Harrison Medal for the best player in the Division Two section of last year’s championships. Davidson was snapped up by Collingwood with the Pies’ second pick in the National Draft (No.27). He is yet to make his senior debut for the Magpies, although he has been named an emergency for this week’s match against the Kangaroos.

Barry Brooks – Port Adelaide
The 198cm ruck from King Island was drafted to Port Adelaide, with the Power’s first selection at No. 15 in the National Draft. Viewed as a long-term proposition, Brooks was a standout performer for Tasmania at the championships, while he also played senior football with Tassie’s VFL side last year. He has yet to play at senior level for the Power.

Victoria Country

Ashley Watson – Kangaroos
The Kangaroos’ second selection at last year’s National Draft (No. 14), Watson showed great promise in the Roos’ pre-season, particularly in an intra-club match where he stood up against his side’s best. However, he has yet to taste AFL football in 2002, as he serves his apprenticeship with the Murray Kangaroos in the VFL.

James Bartel – Geelong
Bartel captained Vic Country in 2001 and was snapped up by Geelong with their first pick (No. 8) in the National Draft. He played the opening eight games this year, which included a best-on-ground performance against Fremantle, before he was dropped for round 10. He also received a Rising Star nomination in round four. Has a huge future.

Mark McGough – Collingwood
McGough made an immediate impact at AFL ranks when he made his debut against Hawthorn in round four. But he rose to an even bigger stage the following week when he won the Anzac Day Medal in a best-on-ground display in only his second AFL game.
He has played nine games, won a Rising Star nomination and has a big future.

Steve Johnson – Geelong
Johnson was Geelong’s fourth selection in last year’s National Draft, although he was still a top 25 pick, after being taken by the Cats at No. 24. He has played two games for Geelong at the half-way mark of the season, playing consecutive matches in rounds six-seven. He is one of several Cats earmarked to take the club into an exciting new era.

Victoria Metropolitan

Andrew Carrazzo – Geelong
Although Carrazzo shone in last year’s championships, he was somewhat surprisingly overlooked in 2001 National Draft. However, he was quickly snapped up by Geelong in the Rookie Draft, at selection No. 5. He is likely to push hard for a spot on the senior list by the end of the year, as he continues to develop for Geelong in the VFL.

Sam Power – Western Bulldogs
Power was touted as a top 10 draftee before last year’s National Draft and was duly rewarded with that tag, when the Bulldogs claimed him at No. 10, the Doggies' first selection. A joint winner of the Larke Medal for the best player in last year’s Division One championships, Power is yet to make his AFL debut, but has a big future.

Luke Ball – St Kilda
One of the most talked-about players leading up to last year’s National Draft. Ball was the second player selected after Hawthorn toyed with the notion of drafting the highly sought after young gun. He is unlikely to make his debut for the Saints this year, due to an osteitis pubis set-back, along with the fact that he is still at school. Has a huge future.

David Rodan – Richmond
Did everything possible to get drafted – had pace, endurance, skills, class and determination. Then what was the problem? Not enough height was the common theme! But that hasn’t stopped this excitement machine defying his critics and playing every game for the Tigers so far this season, on top of being nominated for the Rising Star.

Charlie Gardiner – Geelong
Showed plenty to like about his game in last year’s championships and was taken with Geelong’s third pick in the 2001 National Draft – selection No. 23. Gardiner has played in the previous two rounds for the Cats after making his AFL debut in round 11. He spent the early part of the year in the VFL, but is seen as an exciting long-term prospect.

Brent Reilly – Adelaide
Adelaide’s first selection in last year’s National Draft (12th overall), Reilly shone in last year’s championships and is one of the most promising midfielders from the class of 2001. He is yet to make his AFL debut for the Crows, but shapes as an exciting prospect that still has plenty of physical development left in him.

Ben Finnin – Adelaide
The Crows’ second pick at the 2001 National Draft, Finnin was claimed by Adelaide at selection No. 44. He was a fine player for Vic Metro in last year’s championships, when he impressed with his strong marking in defence. He has yet to debut with the Crows in his first year at Adelaide.

Western Australia

Craig Glancy – East Perth
Despite being one of Western Australia’s key players in last year’s championships and winning All-Australian selection, Glancy was surprisingly overlooked in the National and Rookie Drafts. However, he has remained with East Perth in the WAFL, where he played some solid football in 2002.

Steven Armstrong – Melbourne
A joint winner of the Larke Medal for the best player in last year’s Division One of the championships, Armstrong was touted as an early National Draft pick, yet slipped to No. 25. He played the opening five rounds in 2002, which included a Rising Star nomination, but was surprisingly dropped soon after. Has a big future for the Dees.

Quinten Lynch – West Coast
Powerful youngster, who shone for Western Australia in last year’s championships, yet was overlooked in the 2000-01 National Draft. He was selected by West Coast at No. 19 in the Rookie Draft and was elevated to the senior line-up for the match against Carlton in round 12, when he kicked two crucial goals, in a thrilling one-point victory.