The size and maturity of Fremantle’s draftees stood out as the club unveiled their new crop of players on Monday.
While it is common to see scrawny teenagers who need to spend several summers in the gym when they arrive in the AFL, this group looked significantly different.
Ruckmen Scott Jones and Lloyd Meek are 22 and 19 years old respectively but they both weigh more than 100kg. Sam Switkowski is 21 and places a big emphasis on tackling.
Tom North is an inside-midfielder who wins clearances. He’s also a karate black belt. Mitch Crowden is only 175cm tall but weighs 88kg.
Contested marking is Tasmanian key forward Hugh Dixon’s biggest strength and he weighs 90kg.
Top five draft picks Andrew Brayshaw and Adam Cerra are lean but powerful.
It’s a far cry from when Stephen Hill and Nat Fyfe joined Fremantle weighing 69kg and 73kg respectively.
“There’s no doubt this group has some really strong bodies, a bit of power, some good ball users and some good developed bodies,” Fremantle list manager Brad Lloyd said.
“There’s a fair few inside mids in there as opposed to half-forward/half-back types. There is a fair bit of power and aggression in the group. It gives them a chance.”
The Dockers have wasted little time ensuring the draftees understand what it takes to be successful in the AFL.
Fyfe hosted the draftees and the Dockers’ leadership group for dinner at his house last night. The interstate draftees have moved in with senior players and are doing their best to learn from their mentors.
Cerra and Lachie Neale were at the beach by 6am the next morning.
“He does that every morning so I’m trying to do the things that he does and learn off him as much as possible,” Cerra said.