2022 RMC NAB League Team of the Year announced

THE 2022 Rookie Me Central NAB League Team of the Year has been announced, with 24 of the competition’s finest players making the cut. After the initial squad of 48 was compiled last week, the final team comes together with awards season in full swing.

Throughout the season, 183 players earned nominations via our teams of the week, making them eligible for selection here. Players who won at least five nominations were automatic entrants, while a selection of the most highly touted draft prospects fill out the remaining team.

Rookie Me Central medallist Aaron Cadman leads the team as captain, slotting in at full forward having won a high of nine team of the week entries. Fellow top talent Will Ashcroft also features having earned eight nominations, alongside Lachlan Cowan and Noah Bradshaw.

We break down the team line by line, providing an insight into just why each player made the cut.

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B: Finn Emile-Brennan (DS)Ryan Eyers (MB)Harvey Gallagher (BP)
HB: Lachlan Cowan (TD)Lewis Hayes (ER) Jason Gillbee (BP)

A dynamic defence features mobile key position players, ample marking support, and running rebounders who certainly catch the eye. At almost 200cm, Ryan Eyers and Lewis Hayes can mark and use the ball with composure, taking up key position slots in our hypothetical backline.

Adding a great deal of versatility to the lineup is Jason Gillbee, who finds his spot at half-back having featured on all three lines this year. Fellow Bendigo Pioneers leader Harvey Gallagher comes in on the last line, having produced remarkable form in a new role towards the back-end of the year.

Tasmania Devils skipper Lachlan Cowan was a lock for the other half-back flank after his outstanding campaign for his state. He, and Finn Emile-Brennan are outstanding rebounders with damaging kicking skills who have been consistent figures in our teams of the week.

Bendigo’s Harvey Gallagher enjoyed a stellar end to the season | Image Credit: Rookie Me Central


C: Elijah Tsatas (OC)Henry Hustwaite (DS)Colby McKercher (TD)
FOL: Toby Murray (MB)Will Ashcroft (SD)Jhye Clark (GF)

The midfield is always the toughest line to pick, and it was hardly any different this year with such a stacked group of on-ballers in the NAB League. To the surprise of absolutely nobody, leading AFL Draft prospect Will Ashcroft features at the heart of midfield, roving next to Vic Country and Geelong adversary, Jhye Clark.

Set to lock horns in this month’s National Championship decider, the pair skippered their respective NAB League regions in remarkably consistent campaigns. Dandenong’s Henry Hustwaite rounds out the centre bounce mix alongside Murray ruck Toby Murray, who was an automatic entrant for his repeat team of the week nominations.

There’s some excitement on the outside too. Oakleigh jet Elijah Tsatas, who starred in that position early in the season, features on the opposite wing to Tasmanian Colby McKercher. The speedy midfielder is the first bottom-ager in our side and like Tsatas, can also play on the inside.

Will Ashcroft is this year’s leading AFL Draft prospect | Image Credit: Rookie Me Central


HF: Harry Sheezel (SD) Nate Caddy (NK)Bailey Humphrey (GP)
F: Zane Duursma (GP)Aaron Cadman (GWV)Charlie Clarke (SD)

There is X-factor and goals galore among our front six. League leading goalkicker, Aaron Cadman skippers the team from full forward and has some likely types surrounding him. Nate Caddy, the second bottom-ager to feature, comes in at centre half-forward for his exciting marking displays in Northern Knights colours.

Bailey Humphrey headlines a group of flankers and pockets who can all run through midfield. His feats either side of an untimely injury put him well within contention, starting on a flank opposite to mercurial Sandringham goalsneak Harry Sheezel. Despite spending time on-ball, his home lies inside attacking 50.

The pair are joined by teammates in the forward line. Making it a trio of starting bottom-agers is Zane Duursma, who has another big year ahead of him for the Power. Crafty Dragon Charlie Clarke rounds out the mix, bringing his creativity and nose for goal to a stacked group of six.

Aaron Cadman skippers the side | Image Credit: Rookie Me Central


Noah Bradshaw (MB), Taj Campbell-Farrell (DS), Jacob Konstanty (GP), Harley Reid (BP), Jed Rule (OC), Mitch Szybkowski (DS)

Three automatic entrants front a talented interchange bench, making the cut on the back of commendably consistent seasons. Namely, they are Murray Bushrangers midfielder Noah Bradshaw, Dandenong Stingrays on-baller Taj Campbell-Farrell, and tall Oakleigh Chargers defender Jed Rule.

Gippsland Power livewire Jacob Konstanty could easily have made the starting side, if not for how stacked the forward line is, and the same can be said for bottom-age dynamo Harley Reid. Both fared well in a mostly midfield-forward rotation for their respective sides, while prolific ball winner Mitch Szybkowski rounds out the six after strong performances either side of school football commitments.

Jacob Konstanty lit up the NAB League this year | Image Credit: Rookie Me Central

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