Ryan gets his League chance

WEST Adelaide draft prospect Kobe Ryan will make his League debut in the SANFL tomorrow, in what will be somewhat of a baptism of fire for the teenager. The midfielder, who dominated the Under 18s for a month averaging 29.8 disposals, 4.4 marks, 6.8 clearances, 4.8 tackles and 6.0 inside 50s will play his third level of football for 2022. Last week he made his senior debut with the Westies for North Adelaide, booting a goal from 27 touches, seven marks, six tackles, five clearances and four inside 50s, showing he was more than ready to step up to the highest state league level.

Ryan will have the perfect opportunity to test himself against AFL-listed players, named at half-forward where he could take on Andrew McPherson or Nicholas Murray from Adelaide’s SANFL side. The Crows sit third with four wins from five games, but are only 0.3 per cent off top spot. The Bloods on the other hand, are the only side without a victory, and sit on the bottom with a percentage of 35.5. Though Ryan earned his chance, another top young gun lost his League spot, with Harry Lemmey heading back to the Reserves. The talented key forward booted 2.1 from nine disposals and five marks on debut against Central District in Round 2, but only added one more game to his tally – last week’s 70-point loss to North Adelaide – where had collected just two disposals and one mark.

Another key forward who astonishingly remains at Under 18s level is Tom Scully. The West Adelaide tall is too big and strong for his own peers. His numbers – which are 33 goals in six games – including three hauls of seven and one of six – has not been enough to earn a call-up. He has averaged 11.8 disposals and 7.0 marks to go with his 5.5 goals per game in a traditional key forward role inside 50.

Elsewhere, Woodville-West Torrens inside bull Adam D’Aloia remains in the Under 18s despite a mind-boggling 30.0 disposals, 9.6 clearances, 4.6 tackles and 6.8 inside 50s in five Under 18s games. He got on Reserves game back in Round 2 where he had the 24 disposals, six tackles and six clearances, but still returned to the Under 18s the net week and has been there since.

Meanwhile over in the south east of the country, Vic Metro will take on a Young Guns lineup effectively featuring a host of 2002 and 2003-born players from across the NAB League past and present. With school football still happening, the Metro lineup has a lot of unavailabilities, with Sandringham Dragons jet Harry Sheezel one to watch after a ripping start to the NAB League Boys season. He along with 2005-born Knights forward Nate Caddy, Eastern Ranges’ Kai Windsor and Calder Cannons’ Paul Pascu are among those to remember for the match.

For the Young Guns lineup, names such as Massimo D’Ambrosio, Max Walton and Tyreece Leiu are alongside some talls such as Ryan Eyers and Fletcher Hart looking for a chance to impress ahead of June 1’s Mid-Season AFL Draft. Charlie Molan, Hamish Sinnott and Jamieson Ballantyne are among the GWV Rebels to receive AFL Draft Combine invites last year, but missed out on being drafted. They will also take part in the game, with the Young Guns expected to get up.

At the time of publishing, the WAFL was yet to confirm its teams, and the league itself thrown a curveball with West Coast having to withdraw its Reserves side due to COVID-19 Health and Safety Protocols, and require top-ups just to play its AFL clash with Brisbane.

Down on the Apple Isle, Tasmania Devils’ brightest talents will return to their TSL sides, with North Launceston having a particular boost. The Bombers will welcome back star talent Lachlan Cowan, as well as two young guns coming off six-goal hauls in Seth Campbell and Brandon Leary. Tom McCallum had a huge game in defence for the Devils last round and will join the likes of Bryce Alomes at Clarence, whilst over-age tall Will Splann will suit up for the Roos’ opposition, North Hobart.

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