Team of the week – Round 14

Forwards

Lance Franklin (Hawthorn) – Buddy was too hard to contain for his underdone opponent Michael Jamison. He finished the game with 23 touches, 4 goals and a monumental 10 inside 50’s. He is just two goals short of 500 career goals, an amazing feat at his age, although he will likely now have some time on the sidelines recovering from a hamstring strain.

Michael Hurley (Essendon) – Despite an unfashionable glove on his left hand, Hurley continued his strong form to kick 5 goals from 22 possessions and 12 marks. He made the most of Essendon’s dominance of general play and if he can maintain this form the Bombers will be tough to beat for anyone. 

Taylor Walker (Adelaide) – Big Tex kicked five goals from 15 possessions and helped win contests inside the Crows’ forward 50. He was too big and too sturdy on his feet for his direct opponent Alex Rance, but a reckless tackle on Steven Morris will cost him and his team for the next three weeks.

Jason Porplyzia (Adelaide) – The porpoise had a great second half against the Tigers and was perhaps the difference between the two sides in the end. He had 23 touches, took some nice contested marks and kicked two goals in what was probably his best game for the year so far.

Jonathon Brown (Brisbane)- The imposing Lions skipper initiated the thumping of Melbourne on Sunday with a 3 goal first quarter. He finished the game with 4 goals, 24 touches and 12 marks in his best game for the year. At times he made the most of mismatches with the depleted Melbourne defense, but whoever was on him couldn’t compete.

Leigh Adams (North Melbourne) – Adams’ outstanding year continues. He had 32 touches, 6 tackles, two goals and 135 Dream Team points. He’s very tough to contain and opposition coaches need to start making him a priority.

Midfielders

Ben Mc Evoy (St Kilda) – In a week where there were no standout rucks, Mc Evoy gets the nod for his effort against the Roos. He had 18 disposals, 25 hitouts and 113 Dream Team points and was amongst the Saint’s most effective players. He has completed a successful return from injury.

Kieren Jack (Sydney) – Jack seems to love playing home games and he was happy to do as he pleased against a hapless GWS outfit in the so called Sydney ‘rivalry’. His 33 possessions and 2 goals, including a fantastic goal from the boundary line in the third quarter, were good enough for him the win the Brett Kirk medal for best on ground.

Jobe Watson (Essendon)Jobe “3 votes” Watson produced another commanding midfield performance. He must be inspiring for his teammates, he just continually sets the standard. Against the Dogs he had 30 touches and topped it off with three goals.

Daniel Wells (North Melbourne) – Wells had another great game, slicing through Etihad stadium and cracking open St Kilda’s midfield defence. He had 34 disposals, kicked two team-lifting goals, and also set a few goals up with his forward 50 entries. There’s nothing worse for an opposition supporter than seeing him run forward with the ball from the centre bounce.

Sam Mitchell (Hawthorn) – A typical Mitchell performance was good enough for him to win the David Parkin Medal for best on ground against the Blues on Friday night. He barely put a foot wrong throughout the night and Carlton didn’t have any answer for his ability to win the ball in all parts of the ground. He finished with 32 possessions, 1 goal and 124 Dream Team points.

Dane Swan (Collingwood) – Swan’s engine seems to be moving into full gear and getting smoother as the season goes on.  He was the everywhere man against the Dockers. His stats were sensational: 43 disposals, 8 inside 50’s, 8 clearances, 7 tackles, 2 goals and 172 Dream Team points.

Defenders

Pearce Hanley (Brisbane) – Hanley is perhaps the AFL’s most in-form half back at the moment and he had one of his best games yet on Sunday against the Dees. He finished with 24 touches and 3 goals, showing he’s not afraid to venture forward.

Courtney Dempsey (Essendon) – Dempsey’s career best form was further consolidated on Saturday night against the Dogs. He played his role perfectly, often providing the linkage for Essendon’s transitions between half back and half forward. He had 23 touches, 13 marks, 1 goal and 139 Dream Team points.

Luke Delaney (North Melbourne) – Back in the side this week, Delaney’s defensive performance cannot be faulted. His direct opponent Justin Koschitzke didn’t manage a kick or a mark for the entire match, only three handballs.

Luke Mc Pharlin (Fremantle) – The veteran defender Mc Pharlin was given the task on Travis Cloke and was able to keep him very quiet. Although Cloke kicked two goals, his impact was minimal and Buckley pulled the pin on him by substituting him out in the final quarter. In fairness, Cloke appeared to be carrying a sore knee, but nonetheless McPharlin did his defensive job and also picked up 22 disposals and 6 rebound 50’s.

Ryan Harwood (Brisbane) – Harwood has been switched to defence and he’s taken the transition very well. Although he didn’t have too many imposing Melbourne forwards to deal with, he gets a spot in the team of the week for his career-high 29 disposals and 12 marks. He was tough to go past, and intercepted many of Melbourne’s forward 50 entries.

Michael Hibberd (Essendon) – Hibberd was another one of Essendon’s half back play makers, often finding a surprising amount of space and carrying the ball forward. On top of his 24 disposals and 10 marks he also played a vital defensive role and was part of the reason the Dogs only managed 8 goals for the match.

Bench

Joel Selwood (Geelong) – The skipper had another great day at the Cattery in the wet. He had 27 disposals, 6 tackles, and bobbed up with two goals. His ability to win contested ball and deliver effectively in tough conditions was impressive and he just gets the edge over James Kelly for this spot.

Matthew Pavlich (Fremantle) – Pav kicked another 5 goals at the MCG this week to add to his 5 against the Tigers a few weeks ago. He also had 21 touches and seems to be enjoying his more permanent forward role in the team this year.

Scott Thompson (Adelaide)Thompson was the most consistent four quarter performer in what was a topsy turvy game against the Tigers. He worked tirelessly to get the Crows back in the game with 32 possessions, 10 tackles and 132 Dream Team points.

Luke Shuey (West Coast) – Shuey was outstanding and is unlucky not to be in the starting team in a week which had plenty of starring midfielders. He had 32 touches and 3 goals against the Gold Coast and is fast becoming West Coast most damaging midfielder.

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