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New Dog comes from 'nowhere' to the big-time

Fergus Greene will make his senior debut for the Dogs against the Power - AFL,Western Bulldogs,Fergus Greene
Fergus Greene will make his senior debut for the Dogs against the Power
He's worked really hard and wasn't the typical TAC Cup pathway player
Bendigo Pioneers talent manager Stephen Sharp on Fergus Greene

WESTERN Bulldogs debutant Fergus Greene is your classic late developer, with the forward barely on recruiters' radars heading into the 2016 NAB AFL Draft.

The Bendigo Pioneers' product only played five TAC Cup games in his draft year, and only joined the club mid-season after catching the eye in country footy with Sandhurst.

Unlike many of his teammates in the Dogs' side to play Port Adelaide in Ballarat, Greene wasn't a highly-decorated junior footballer who was a walk-up start to representative teams.

But after two impressive seasons developing with Footscray, the 20-year-old finally gets his opportunity on Sunday, and Pioneers talent manager Stephen Sharp couldn't prouder of a player who's come from "nowhere" in footy terms.

Greene has slotted 18 goals from all 14 games in the VFL this season while averaging 11 disposals, four marks and three tackles.

"We're really excited for Fergus because he's worked really hard and wasn't the typical TAC Cup pathway player," Sharp told

"He wasn't involved in our program early and I don't think he was selected in any interleague teams as a junior, so to get where he's got to, I've got to take my hat off to him.

"He wore three different numbers in five games with us, and we weren't trying to hide him, it just worked out that way.

"I constantly had recruiters asking which player Fergus was.

"When his father Chris was coaching interleague sides, Fergus couldn't get a game, so he was the teams' runner through those years.

"He is definitely a late developer."

Taken with pick 70 in the 2016 talent pool, Greene has similar traits to teammate and fellow late bloomer Tory Dickson, with premiership forward having to wait until the age of 24 to make his AFL debut.

Like Dickson, Greene possesses innate goal sense which is complemented by reliable set shot routine and the ability to apply forward pressure.

But Sharp believes his former charge will only evolve as player.

"I reckon he could develop into a really good outside mid or wingman who can run up and down the ground with repeat efforts," Sharp said.

"Fergus ran a 15.6 beep test at the state combine, which was the best time recorded nationally prior to the draft.

"He's also a great mark with great elevation, clean ball-handling skills and a sound kicking style, so he has all the necessary ingredients to go with his elite endurance. He's also got that great goal sense, which you can't buy either.

"He marches to the beat to his own drum and has his own personality, but he's a really respectful kid.

"With a great attitude, I'm sure he'll get the best out of himself."

Strong footballing pedigree is also in Greene's favour, with uncle Brendan Hartney playing 23 games with Carlton during the 1980s.