Adelaide ruckman Reilly O'Brien. Picture: Getty Images via AFL Photos

ADELAIDE ruckman Reilly O'Brien's career-best season has been rewarded with a maiden club best and fairest.

O'Brien (81 votes) claimed the Malcolm Blight Medal in a nail-biting finish ahead of 2018 winner Rory Laird (80) and defender Luke Brown (76) at the Adelaide Convention Centre on Friday night. 

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It was O'Brien's first top-10 finish in just his second full season at AFL level, the podium finishers the only three players to play all 17 games for the Crows this season. 

The Crows introduced a new voting structure this season, awarding players on a 0-10 scale based on their impact in each of the Crows' performances. 


O'Brien's seven votes game in the final round against Richmond was enough to edge past Laird who polled five votes. 

Laird's best afield outing in the round 16 win over Greater Western Sydney was the only performance of the season to claim a perfect 10 votes.  

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Matt Crouch and rookie recruit Ben Keays rounded out the top-five, while Shane McAdam (seventh) was the Crows' bolter. 

O'Brien, who finished the season with 37 games to his name, becomes the second least experienced Crows club champion behind Matt Connell who won the 1995 count with 24 matches to his name.

Adelaide best and fairest top 10

Reilly O’Brien – 81 votes
Rory Laird – 80
Luke Brown – 76
Matt Crouch – 72
Ben Keays – 65
Brodie Smith – 61
Shane McAdam – 56
Kyle Hartigan – 54
Tom Lynch – 53
Rory Sloane – 51

Other major award winners

Leading Goalkicker Award – Taylor Walker
Mark Bickley Emerging Talent Award – Andrew McPherson
Players’ Trademark Award – Ben Keays
Dr Brian Sando OAM Trophy (for elite standards) – Andrew McPherson
Members’ MVP Award – Reilly O’Brien
Phil Walsh Best Team Man Award – Tom Lynch

Club champion voting protocol

1-2 votes: Played team role, little impact on the result.
3-4 votes: Played team role, impacted result.
5-6 votes: Solid in team role, positive impact on result.
7-8 votes: Strong in team role, significant impact on result.
9-10 votes: Elite in team role, dominant impact on result.