ADELAIDE and Geelong are jostling over the services of a basketball prodigy seen as a future AFL ruckman.
AFL.com.au understands 202cm Paul Tsapatolis, who last year won gold for Australia on the world stage, has met with both the Crows and Cats over an AFL switch.
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The 18-year-old's athleticism has impressed a number of clubs in recent trials with his decision expected to come down to two when AFL list sizes are soon confirmed.
Having not played football for at least three years, Tsapatolis is eligible to join as a Category B rookie where his contract would be paid outside the salary cap.
While clubs await finalisation on the breakdown of lists for 2021, most are forging ahead in the strong likelihood of having multiple Category B positions at their disposal.
Tsapatolis, who has Greek heritage, has captained Vic Metro's underage basketball sides in recent seasons and represented Australia at FIBA Oceania (2019) and Asia (2018) tournaments.
Winning gold at both events, the centre was also named as an All-Star five at the Oceania championships.
He played at the 2018 tournament alongside Melbourne ruckman Luke Jackson and Collingwood midfielder Jay Rantall who were selected in last year's NAB AFL Draft after committing to football.
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Tsapatolis last played football for the Yarraville Seddon Eagles in 2015 as a 13-year-old.
Geelong are looking for a developing big man to add to their ruck stocks behind Rhys Stanley, Darcy Fort and Esava Ratugolea after delisting two ruckmen last year.
The Cats are currently using two of their three Category B rookie positions for Irishman Stefan Okunbor and Next Generation Academy graduate Blake Schlensog.
Adelaide is also thin for tall stocks behind Reilly O'Brien, Kieran Strachan and forward Billy Frampton.
The Crows entered 2020 without any Category B listed players but may also opt to use the list with players from their Next Generation Academy heading into 2021.
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It is understood Tsapatolis also flew to Sydney to meet with the Swans last year, while he toured North Melbourne and has previously held conversations with Melbourne.
A switch to the AFL as a Category B rookie would follow the path of former basketballers including Hugh Greenwood, Tom Fullarton, Tom Wilson and Mate Colina who last week signed with Richmond.
Other AFL Category B success stories include Mark Blicavs who switched from athletics and Alex Keath who crossed from cricket.