Vic Metro Under 18 squad announced

VIC METRO has announced its squad for the upcoming Under 18 National Championships, featuring 31 players from across the six Metropolitan regions. Sandringham dominates the selection with 11 representatives, as all bar one region had four or more players included.

>> SCROLL to see the full squad & fixture

Top-agers dominate the crop, with 28 of them joined by two bottom-agers (Louis Emmett and Archie Ludowyke), and one over-ager (Illiro Smit). The strength of the 2006-born group was known last year, with 12 players returning after earning berths in the side as bottom-agers.

There are seven National Academy members available to Metro; namely Levi Ashcroft, Tom Gross, Christian Moraes, Harry O’Farrell, Josh Smillie, Jagga Smith, and Luke Trainor, along with game one injury replacement players Taj Hotton and Jayden Nguyen.

A handful of club-tied talents also feature. Ashcroft is tied to Brisbane via the father-son rule, while Essendon has access to Next Generation Academy products Nguyen and Isaac Kako, and St Kilda will be monitoring defenders Lennox Hofmann and Adrian Cole.

The squad takes up a quite different complexion to the summer training group, with 12 prospects added after five rounds of Coates Talent League action, various trial games, and the start of the APS season. There may also be more inclusions to come from a group of eight train-on players.

Coached by Sandringham Dragons mentor Rob Harding, Metro will kick off its National Championships on June 9 against reigning champions, the Allies at IKON Park. Away trips to Western Australia (June 23) and South Australia (June 30) follow, before rounding out the campaign against Vic Country on July 14.


AFL Academy members:

Levi Ashcroft
Tom Gross
Christian Moraes
Harry O’Farrell
Josh Smillie
Jagga Smith
Luke Trainor
Taj Hotton*
Jayden Nguyen*

* – denotes injury replacement

By age:

2005-born (over-age): 1
2006-born (top-age): 28
2007-born (bottom-age): 2

By region:

Calder Cannons: 5
Eastern Ranges: 4
Northern Knights: 4
Oakleigh Chargers: 6
Sandringham Dragons: 11
Western Jets: 1


Calder Cannons (5):
Damon Hollow
Isaac Kako
Nash King
Jayden Nguyen
Harry O’Farrell

Eastern Ranges (4):
Cody Anderson
Christian Moraes
Josh Smillie
Illiro Smit**

Northern Knights (4):
Jesse Dattoli
Zak Johnson
Thomas Sims
Gabriel Stumpf

Oakleigh Chargers (6):
Louis Emmett*
Tom Gross
Patrick Retschko
Charlie Richardson
Jagga Smith
Lucas Tovey

Sandringham Dragons (11):
Harry Armstrong
Levi Ashcroft
Adrian Cole
Josh Dolan
Lennox Hofmann
Taj Hotton
Archie Ludowyke*
Bailey McKenzie
Harrison Oliver
Murphy Reid
Luke Trainor

Western Jets (1):
Lucca Grego

Train-on players (8):
Thomas Burton* (Western Jets)
Jack Dalton* (Sandringham Dragons)
Oliver Greeves* (Eastern Ranges)
Lucas Impey** (Western Jets)
Luke Kennedy (Sandringham Dragons)
Blake Leidler (Oakleigh Chargers)
Keighton Matofai-Forbes (Western Jets)
Lucas McInerney (Northern Knights)

* – denotes bottom-ager (2007-born)
** – denotes over-ager (2005-born)


vs. Allies | Sun June 9, 1:05pm @ IKON Park
vs. Western Australia | Sun June 23, 10:45am @ TBC (Western Australia)
vs. South Australia | Sun June 30, 10:05am @ TBC (South Australia)
vs. Vic Country | Sun July 14, 10:35am @ TBC (Victoria)

TBC = to be confirmed.

>> FULL FIXTURE: 2024 AFL Under 16 & 18 National Championships

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