PREVIEW | 2024 Coates Talent League: Round 4

NORTHERN Academies enter the fray as Round 4 of the Coates Talent League gets underway on Saturday. The Swans Academy takes on Gippsland Power before cross-town rival Greater Western Sydney hosts Tasmania Devils in Blacktown on Sunday.

The round will be stretched across six days, with the Northern Territory Thunder Academy playing the first of their two fixtures against Western Jets on Thursday. Before that all goes down, we preview our match of the round, between the Power and Swans.

>> PREVIEW: 2024 Academy Series

  • Team
  • Gippsland Power
  • Swans Academy

Saturday April 20, 12:45pm @ Shepley Oval


Gippsland Power will hope to return to the winners list and spoil the Swans Academy’s grand entrance in one fell swoop when the two sides meet at Shepley Oval on Saturday. The Power are poised at an even 1-1 after two games, while the Swans present somewhat of an unknown after their 2-3 record in last year’s Academy Series.


After missing out on the AFL Academy game through injury, Gippsland skipper Xavier Lindsay has been named and will likely slot straight back into midfield. Fellow National Academy member Ricky Mentha is also in the squad despite being tied to the Northern Territory Academy.

A bunch of Vic Country Under 18 trialists are back in Gippsland colours, too. That list includes bottom-aged talent hub members Willem Duursma and Jobe Scapin, who rotated between the wing and defence last time out.

Sydney will be without one of its leading 2007-born prospects in Max King, but has running defender Lachlan Carmichael and marking forward Noah Chamberlain at its disposal. Both players were Under 16 All Australians last year.

National Academy defender Joel Cochran promises to add some versatility in the tall department, but will likely start down back with his intercept marking and efficient ball use. Over-ager Lachlan Cabor is also back for another year, looking to press his case with the Swans.


It will take more time for Sydney to blow out the cobwebs here than Gippsland coming off a week apart. That extra bit of run in the legs should serve the Victorian program well, especially without having to travel interstate. Power by 24.


Tasmania Devils face a tough trip up to Blacktown to face the Giants Academy on Sunday. The visitors will lose over-agers Geordie Payne and Max Mapley to the Young Guns game, but regain National Academy tall Oliver Dean.

Midfielder-forward Lenny Douglas enjoyed a breakout game in Round 3 and firms as one to watch from the Apple Isle. The Giants crop is somewhat of an unknown with so many top class players tied to Coates Talent League clubs, but they should be competitive.

The Northern Territory Academy will hope to turn around their fortunes across two games next week, starting with a clash against Western Jets on Thursday. The Thunder then go on to play Tasmania on Sunday off only a few day’s break in their Victorian stay.

Last year, the NT was consigned to an average losing margin of 136 points across three games, including a defeat of that exact margin to Tasmania. Meanwhile, Western will be eyeing off its first win of the season at the third time of asking. Squads will be announced next week.


Gippsland Power vs. Sydney Swans Academy
Saturday April 20, 12:45pm @ Shepley Oval

GWS Giants Academy vs. Tasmania Devils
Sunday April 21, 12:30pm @ Blacktown ISP

Western Jets vs. Northern Territory Academy
Thursday April 25, 1:15pm @ Skinner Reserve

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