Tarkyn O'Leary

height: 178cm

weight: 70kg

D.O.B: 01-07-2005

Leagues: AFL U18 Championships, Coates Talent League Boys

  • Snapshot
  • Analysis
  • Summary

SNAPSHOT: “Perhaps not spoken about as often as some of the more highly touted wingman in the draft, Tarkyn O’Leary has consistently showcased impressive disposal and work rate throughout the season.”

Making the move from a small forward as a bottom-ager to becoming a mainstay on Sandringham and Vic Metro’s wings, Tarkyn O’Leary has made the most of his position change this year. He has waxed with strong inside ball winners to provide a release option and use the ball effectively in attacking phases. O’Leary didn’t go without some time up forward throughout the year though, kicking three goals for the Sandringham VFL side in his two appearances at the level.


+ Agility
+ Ball use
+ Endurance
+ Footy IQ
+ Work rate

- Defensive game
- Size

With running power an increasingly important asset for teams at AFL level, O’Leary fits the bill as someone who could provide that in spades if given the opportunity. As a player that likes to take the game on with ball in hand, and attempts to bite off difficult disposals, O’Leary is somewhat of a ‘playmaker’ off the wing, able to utilise his endurance to get involved in chains of play multiple times.

O’Leary combined particularly well with the strong on-ball brigade at Sandringham, often holding his width from contest nicely to be spotted out as a handball option. He was also reliable when teammates would kick the ball out wide into space for him to run onto and continue moving it forward with speed, often backing himself to beat opponents when caught in a foot race and showing off his impressive agility when he found himself nearly caught.

It’s been rare throughout the season to see O’Leary use the ball poorly or not actively seek out the most damaging option with ball in hand. More often than not, he looks to hit up leading forwards in the corridor via foot, or give to teammates already on the move in space by hand. However, he did balance this aspect well, understanding when he needed to take safer options or slow the game down a bit to allow his side to reset.

Heading into the next level, as with most players under 180cm nowadays, size remains a question mark for O’Leary both with height and strength, as he has been exposed at times in aerial battles and pushed off the ball when unable to get separation from his opponent. O’Leary could also look to get himself more involved defensively through games by utilising his endurance to apply pressure on opposition ball carriers, and get into the defensive 50 to rebound more often. He's lethal in attacking phases.



O’Leary ticks a lot of boxes and certainly plays his role well out on the wing. His speed, agility and endurance are handy athletic traits to have, and he has the football nous to be damaging with ball in hand. While he can improve on the defensive end, clubs will have enjoyed his exploits on the attack which point towards solid upside. The hard runner may feature in the back-end of this year’s draft.

Ball use
Footy IQ
Work rate
Defensive game

AFL U18 Championships

2023Vic Metro241842883320034038.

Coates Talent League Boys

2022Sandringham Dragons18244250080031344.
2023Sandringham Dragons105952002300330041143138.17.315.
Tarkyn O’Leary Articles
View All