Jack Riewoldt won Richmond’s best and fairest. Picture: Michael Klein
Jack Riewoldt won Richmond’s best and fairest. Picture: Michael Klein

Two tie in Pies' B&F: check out your AFL club's awards

A SINGLE vote on grand final day has resulted in a historic tie in Collingwood's best-and-fairest award.

The one vote to ruckman Brodie Grundy, in Collingwood's grand final loss to West Coast, drew him level with star midfielder Steele Sidebottom and the pair couldn't be separated by a countback.

On a packed night of club award ceremonies, Carlton, North Melbourne and the Giants also announced their best-and-fairest winners.

It is the first time since 1994 the Magpies' best-and-fairest award has been shared.

Sidebottom and Grundy played the same number of games and polled the same number of high-value vote games.

It is Sidebottom's second Copeland Trophy victory, having also claimed last year's award.

Grundy, 24, dedicated his award to housemate Tim Broomhead, who broke his leg against GWS in round two.

"Special mention to Tim Broomhead - this year's been extremely tough for you but you haven't brought any of those feelings home," Grundy said.

"You've been extremely selfless every week regardless of your situation ... I can't thank you enough."

Grundy also shared his "bromance" with coach Nathan Buckley.

A countback couldn’t separate Magpies Steele Sidebottom and Brodie Grundy. Picture: Michael Willson
A countback couldn’t separate Magpies Steele Sidebottom and Brodie Grundy. Picture: Michael Willson

"I love talking life and footy with you, mate. I think we've learnt a lot from each other this year and over the journey. I love playing for you and look forward to bringing success to this great organisation in the years to come."

He saved his last word for Collingwood fans.

"To the Magpie army, we definitely hear you, we just need you to keep believing."

Sidebottom also thanked the fans and took a dig at Richmond's 100,000 members.

"I don't know where I heard it, maybe Eddie spoke about the Tigers calling themselves an army, but I think we're the only army out there," he said.

Buckley shared the 1994 award with Gavin Brown, father of current Magpie Callum Brown.

Skipper Scott Pendlebury finished third, ahead of Jack Crisp and Taylor Adams, who was recognised with the Bob Rose Award as the best player of the finals.

- Lauren Wood

TOP 10

Steele Sidebottom - 203 votes (E.W. Copeland trophy)

Brodie Grundy - 203 (E.W. Copeland Trophy)

Scott Pendlebury - 178 (J.J. Joyce Trophy)

Jack Crisp - 160 (JF McHale Trophy)

Taylor Adams - 159 (Jack Regan Trophy)

Tom Phillips - 134

Jeremy Howe - 132

Jordan De Goey - 127

Josh Thomas - 122

Brayden Maynard - 107

CARLTON

MIDFIELD bull Patrick Cripps claimed his second John Nicholls Medal and was named co-captain for 2019 in a big night at Carlton.

Cripps will lead the Blues into a new era with Sam Docherty after Marc Murphy's move to step down.

Cripps, 23, was a runaway victor of Carlton's best-and-fairest award, capping an All-Australian season that also included finishing equal-fourth in the Brownlow Medal.

He claimed 166 votes, ahead of Kade Simpson (108) and brothers Ed and Charlie Curnow (98 votes).

TOP 10

Patrick Cripps - 166

Kade Simpson - 108

Ed Curnow - 98

Charlie Curnow - 98

Dale Thomas - 71

Liam Jones - 48

Zac Fisher - 47

Sam Rowe - 43

Matthew Wright - 39

Marc Murphy - 39

NORTH MELBOURNE

STAR Roo Shaun Higgins' stellar season has been rewarded with a second consecutive Syd Barker Medal as North Melbourne's best-and-fairest player.

Higgins, 30, earned All-Australian selection this year after averaging more than 27 disposals in his 20 games this season.

He finished ahead of fellow midfielder Ben Cunnington in Friday night's count.

Defender Robbie Tarrant, key forward Ben Brown and skipper Jack Ziebell rounded out the top five.

Kangaroos chief executive Carl Dilena said last month that he believed Higgins had taken his game to a new level this season.

"You can't underestimate the influence that having your leaders fit can bring," Dilena told the In Review podcast in September.

"You look at Shaun Higgins this year, he really took it up another notch and was brilliant this year.

"You've got guys like Ben Cunnington who is one of the most underrated players in the competition, but he is happy to stay out of the limelight.

"Jack Ziebell going down forward this year was great. He leads from the front and really sets the tone for the team with his tackling and attack on the footy."

Higgins and Cunnington were also recognised with the Mazda Excellence Award while small forward Kayne Turner was named Shinboner of the Year.

- Lauren Wood

TOP 10

Shaun Higgins - 240

Ben Cunnington - 237

Robbie Tarrant - 218

Ben Brown - 216

Jack Ziebell - 215

Trent Dumont - 215

Todd Goldstein - 206

Jed Anderson - 198

Scott Thompson - 196

Jamie Macmillan - 195

Shaun Higgins evades Magpies Scott Pendlebury and Taylor Adams. Picture: Michael Klein
Shaun Higgins evades Magpies Scott Pendlebury and Taylor Adams. Picture: Michael Klein

GWS GIANTS

LACHIE Whitfield has capped a stellar season by taking out his first Kevin Sheedy Medal as the GWS Giants' club champion.

Sheedy was on hand to make the presentation to the 24-year-old, who claimed the honour with 175 votes, nine ahead of co-captains Callan Ward (164) and Phil Davis (156).

Vice-captain Stephen Coniglio (154) and defender Nick Haynes (151) rounded out the top five.

"Lachie's had a simply outstanding season," Giants coach Leon Cameron said.

"We challenged him this season, almost out of necessity, with his determination and professionalism shining through as he attacked his move to halfback with enthusiasm. We've always known he's an incredibly hardworking and skilful player but what he's been able to achieve this season is nothing short of remarkable."

The No.1 draft pick (2012) made a seamless transition to from the wing to defence at the start of the season and picked up his first All-Australian selection last month. Despite never having played in the backline Whitfield excelled averaging 26.8 disposals, 6.7 marks, 3.7 rebounds and 3.2 tackles per game.

- Neil Cordy

TOP 10

Lachie Whitfield - 175

Callan Ward - 164

Phil Davis - 156

Stephen Coniglio - 154

Nick Haynes - 151

Dylan Shiel - 130

Adam Tomlinson - 117

Tim Taranto - 114

Josh Kelly - 111

Jacob Hopper, Jeremy Cameron, Heath Shaw - 107

Lachie Whitfield transformed into a star defender in 2018. Picture: Phil Hillyard
Lachie Whitfield transformed into a star defender in 2018. Picture: Phil Hillyard

SYDNEY

JAKE Lloyd has continued his rise to the elite ranks of the AFL, taking out the Bob Skilton Medal two weeks after putting pen to paper on a new contract.

The Swans will be happy he's wrapped up for another four years after he won comfortably by 23 votes (540) ahead of last year's leading vote-getter Luke Parker (517) and Lance Franklin, who finished third (510).

The 25-year-old came to the Swans via the 2013 rookie draft and has slotted in perfectly, playing 115 games mostly in defence, missing just three matches in his five years at the SCG.

Lloyd played his 100th senior game in Sydney's Round 8 win over Hawthorn at the MCG.

"From the moment Jake arrived at the club he instantly impressed all of us with his work ethic and his eagerness to learn and make the most of his opportunity," Swans coach John Longmire said.

"He's become an integral part of our team and an emerging leader of our back six. It's a terrific achievement to be crowned club champion and a great reward for the commitment and work he's put in."

TOP 10

Jake Lloyd - 540 votes

Luke Parker - 517 votes

Lance Franklin - 510 votes

Isaac Heeney - 463 votes

Josh Kennedy - 435 votes

Dane Rampe - 433 votes

George Hewett - 430 votes

Jarrad McVeigh - 353 votes

Callum Sinclair - 351 votes

Harry Cunningham - 331 votes

PORT ADELAIDE

PORT Adelaide's oldest player - and least vocal - Justin Westhoff has completed a momentous week and marvellous AFL season as the Power's club champion.

Westhoff started the week celebrating his 32nd birthday, then signed a one-year contract extension for his 13th season at Alberton and on Friday night claimed his first John Cahill Medal.

Westhoff polled 179 votes from a full count of 22 home-and-away games - 17 more than defender Tom Jonas, who was limited to 18 matches with hamstring and knee injuries.

Vice-captain Ollie Wines joined Jonas as the runner-up with 162 votes.

All-Australian Robbie Gray, who was favoured to win his fourth John Cahill Medal, was fourth with 152 votes.

"I've been in football a long time, and I've never seen a more worthy winner," Hinkley said.

"I talk to our players all the time about this bloke and he gets sick of it.

"He's our oldest player, he's our greatest team player, he'll achieve greatness because he'll work hard and has courage to overcome obstacles."

TOP 10

1. Justin Westhoff 179 votes

2. Tom Jonas and Ollie Wines 162

4. Robbie Gray 152

5. Jared Polec 151

6. Chad Wingard 143

7. Darcy Byrne-Jones 139

8. Dan Houston 131

9. Travis Boak 126

10. Tom Clurey 110

WEST COAST

West Coast midfielder Elliot Yeo has capped off an outstanding AFL season by taking out the club's best and fairest award.

Yeo polled 273 votes across his 25 games to beat Jack Redden (231) and Shannon Hurn (222) for the John Worsfold medal on Friday night.

Jamie Cripps finished fourth after producing a career-best season, while Andrew Gaff rounded out the top five despite missing the last six games of the season through suspension.

Yeo averaged a career-best 24.6 disposals and 4.3 clearances this season after being moved into the midfield to help fill the void left by Sam Mitchell and Matt Priddis.

West Coast beat Collingwood by five points in a thrilling grand final, and Eagles coach Adam Simpson was proud of the way his team dealt with adversity this year.

Nic Naitanui (knee), Brad Sheppard (hamstring), Eric Mackenzie (toe), and Gaff (suspension) all missed out on the premiership.

Off the field, West Coast had to deal with incidents involving goalsneak Liam Ryan and Eagles integrity officer Peter Staples.

The player group remained united through it all, and Simpson sung their praises during his speech to the crowd on Friday night.

"I was talking to some of our coaches the other day about what you need to do to win a premiership," Simpson said.

"Someone told me that you've got to get everything right on and off the field. And it's fair to say not much went right for us on and off the field this year. "It started with that JLT 2 game (against Fremantle) where I think only three players turned up for that one. We lost by 10 goals.

"Stapes (Peter Staples) beat up a cameraman during the year. Thanks for that - I really appreciated that on the Monday.

"And then losing Gaff, Shep, Nic, and Eric Mackenzie ... so I'm looking back on all those things that went wrong.

"What I realised by the end of it all is it's not about getting everything right on and off the field. It's about people, and we've got bloody good people at this football club."

TOP 10

Elliot Yeo

Jack Redden

Shannon Hurn

Jamie Cripps

Andrew Gaff

Jeremy McGovern

Mark Hutchings

Brad Sheppard

Jack Darling

Willie Rioli

ESSENDON

ESSENDON'S recruiting raid received another tick with Devon Smith crowned the club's best-and-fairest winner and Adam Saad placing fourth.

Bombers list manager Adrian Dodoro struck deals to secure Smith (GWS) Saad (Gold Coast) and Jake Stringer (Western Bulldogs) last October with the trio enjoying promising seasons.

Stringer did not finish in the top 10 although did take home the club's goalkicking award with 30 majors. Stringer, 24, also led the Dogs' goalkicking from 2015-17.

Smith - the AFL's No.1 pressure player and tackler - edged captain Dyson Heppell and vice-captain Zach Merrett to cap a brilliant debut season at Tullamarine with his first Crichton Medal.

Departing champion Brendon Goddard rounded out the top 10, ensuring the former St Kilda superstar featured in the top 10 of Essendon's best-and-fairest in all six of his seasons at the club.

"(For Smith) to win the Crichton Medal in his first year at the club is an enormous achievement and we are extremely proud of what Devon has accomplished this season," coach John Worsfold said.

- Sam Landsberger

TOP 10

Devon Smith - 370

Dyson Heppell - 360

Zach Merrett - 335

Adam Saad - 315

Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti - 295

Tom Bellchambers - 281

Michael Hurley - 280

Cale Hooker - 276

Conor McKenna - 268

Brendon Goddard - 267

Devon Smith led the AFL for pressure points in 2018. Picture: Michael Klein
Devon Smith led the AFL for pressure points in 2018. Picture: Michael Klein

GEELONG

GEELONG backman Mark Blicavs has capped a stunning season by claiming the 2018 Carji Greeves Medal.

The 27-year-old held out midfield dynamos Patrick Dangerfield and Tim Kelly by just half a vote to win in one of the tightest counts in recent memory.

But perhaps the biggest surprise of the night was Gary Ablett's absence from the top 10.

The Cats champ, a two-time best and fairest winner at the Cats and four-time winner with Gold Coast, came under scrutiny for his form at times in 2018 but coach Chris Scott defended his star.

He played 19 matches for the year and polled 14 Brownlow votes.

Blicavs praised assistant coach Matthew Scarlett for helping him transition into the Geelong defence and said he had made learning the craft an enjoyable experience.

"I think I have had a consistent year and I really enjoyed my football like I did in 2015," Blicavs said.

"I was pretty injury-free this year and I loved being back in defence. They are a great bunch of guys and learning off Scarlo was great, too, and that enjoyment came through in my footy.

"If I didn't get back I would have had plenty to offer in the midfield or the ruck but it was a new challenge and it simplified the game for me, which helped, so I classify myself as a defender now.

"Scarlo was huge and he expects the world of you and wants you to perform and do the team thing but the way he goes about it, he fills young players with confidence. We saw Jack Henry come in and the confidence that he got playing back and the impact he had going forward was a lot to do with Scarlo and the way that he coaches."

- Lachie Young

TOP 10

Mark Blicavs - 234 votes

Patrick Dangerfield - 233.5

Tim Kelly - 233.5

Tom Hawkins - 229

Joel Selwood - 220.5

Mitch Duncan - 216

Tom Stewart - 216

Jake Kolodjashnij - 203

Sam Menegola - 200

Zach Tuohy - 194.5

RICHMOND

JACK Riewoldt's stellar season has been rewarded yet again, with the champion forward claiming his second Jack Dyer Medal.

The Richmond vice-captain's best-and-fairest trophy comes after an All-Australian season where he was also awarded the Coleman Medal as the league's leading goalkicker.

Creative forward Kane Lambert's star continues to rise, finishing second with Dustin Martin third.

Riewoldt polled 81 votes, 13 ahead of runner-up Lambert on 68 votes. Lambert placed third last season. Martin, last year's Jack Dyer medallist, polled 66 votes.

- Eliza Sewell

TOP 10

Jack Riewoldt - 81

Kane Lambert - 68

Dustin Martin - 66

Shane Edwards - 65

Dylan Grimes - 64

Alex Rance - 63

Trent Cotchin - 58

Nick Vlastuin - 51

Jayden Short - 47

Josh Caddy - 45

 

Jack Riewoldt won the Coleman Medal and Jack Dyer Medal in the same year. Picture: Michael Klein
Jack Riewoldt won the Coleman Medal and Jack Dyer Medal in the same year. Picture: Michael Klein

MELBOURNE

MELBOURNE ruckman Max Gawn has capped off a sensational season winning the Demons' best-and-fairest ahead of Clayton Oliver.

The game's most dominant big man played every game this year and polled 657 votes to win by 62 ahead of last year's winner, Oliver.

Midfield hard-nut Angus Brayshaw, who was a shock third in the Brownlow Medal last week, finished sixth on 429.

Tagger James Harmes was recognised for his breakout season helping lock down on some of the competition's best ball-winners, finishing third on 498 votes ahead of co-captain Nathan Jones (449).

Gawn also took out this year's AFL Coaches Association player of the year and finished equal fourth in the Brownlow Medal on 20 votes, eight behind winner Tom Mitchell.

- Jay Clark

TOP 10

Max Gawn - 657 votes

Clayton Oliver - 595

James Harmes - 468

Nathan Jones - 449

Tom McDonald - 433

Angus Brayshaw -429

Jake Melksham - 428

Christian Salem - 403

Neville Jetta - 383

Jordan Lews - 366

Max Gawn was unstoppable at times in 2018.
Max Gawn was unstoppable at times in 2018.

ADELAIDE

ADELAIDE club champion Rory Laird is confident the annus horribilis of 2018 will make the Crows stronger and better as they seek to return for a tilt at next year's AFL finals.

The club has commissioned an external review of what went wrong at West Lakes this season, beginning with the 2017 Grand Final loss, continuing with the contentious pre-season camp and a spate of hamstring injuries.

But Laird said the players had now put the year behind them, having completed their exit interviews and taking off on holidays.

And he said as difficult as the season had been, it would serve as a platform for improvement next season.

"We've blooded a few young fellas who have come in and played some crucial roles for us," Laird said. "We weren't too far of a few really good teams and we beat Richmond earlier in the year, Sydney in Sydney.

"It was a year of 'almosts' and in the end we fell just short."

Laird pulled on the gold jacket for the first time after polling in all of his 20 games. He led from start to finish, surviving a late charge from last year's winner Matt Crouch.

- Jesper Fjeldstad

TOP 10

Rory Laird - 222

Matt Crouch - 166

Josh Jenkins - 162

Bryce Gibbs - 149

Hugh Greenwood - 140

Tom Doedee - 139

Luke Brown - 134

Wayne Milera Junior - 134

Rory Atkins - 128

Paul Seedsman - 128

ST KILDA

JACK Steven became one of just three men to win four St Kilda best-and-fairests when he claimed another Trevor Barker Award.

Only Jack Riewoldt (six) has won the award more times than Steven, who joined club greats Robert Harvey and Bill Cubbins as four-time champions.

The midfielder finished on 191 votes, ahead of Seb Ross (175) and Jack Steele (134).

"While we were inconsistent as a team, Jack continued to deliver week-in, week-out. It's testament to the type of player and leader he is," Saints coach Alan Richardson said.

"Jack sets a great example for our young group and is incredibly important for what we're trying to build at our footy club."

TOP 10

Jack Steven - 191

Seb Ross - 175

Jack Steele - 134

Jade Gresham - 126

Jarryn Geary - 118

Jimmy Webster - 109

Jake Carlisle - 103

Tim Membrey - 87

Jack Billings - 72

Daniel McKenzie - 69

 

Jack Steven powered to a fourth B&F win. Picture: Michael Klein
Jack Steven powered to a fourth B&F win. Picture: Michael Klein

 

Lachie Hunter caused a boilover at the Bulldogs. Picture: Michael Klein
Lachie Hunter caused a boilover at the Bulldogs. Picture: Michael Klein

 

WESTERN BULLDOGS

BULLDOGS star Lachie Hunter has caused a best-and-fairest boilover, upsetting Jack Macrae to pinch the Charles Sutton Medal by one vote.

And teenager Aaron Naughton placed fourth in his first AFL season despite completing just 17 games due to an ankle injury.

Naughton was drafted at No.9 last year and played on superstars including Lance Franklin, Joe Daniher and Jeremy Cameron in the early rounds with Dale Morris and Marcus Adams sidelined.

The re-signed West Australian led the Dogs in contested marks (27) and booted two goals against North Melbourne when swung forward in Round 14.

Hunter, 23, held on in a thrilling finish at Crown Palladium as Marcus Bontempelli secured a fourth consecutive top-three placing.

- Sam Landsberger

TOP 10

Lachie Hunter - 191

Jack Macrae - 190

Marcus Bontempelli - 154

Aaron Naughton - 120

Josh Dunkley - 110

Caleb Daniel - 110

Jason Johannisen - 109

Hayden Crozier - 98

Toby McLean - 91

Bailey Williams - 86

BRISBANE LIONS

MEDAL collector Dayne Zorko has continued his remarkable ascent into Lions folklore becoming the second man to win four consecutive Club Champion awards, after claiming the Merrett-Murray Medal in Brisbane on Friday night.

The prodigious trophy hunter will enter next season with club great Kevin Murray's record of five straight from 1960-64 in his sights.

The count was the closest on record with Zorko winning by a vote over former skipper Dayne Beams.

The 29-year-old's recognition saw him move to outright seventh on the all-time Club Champion list behind Murray (nine), John Murphy (five), Paul Roos (five), Allan Ruthven (five), Garry Wilson (five) and Michael Voss (five).

- Andrew Hamilton

TOP 10

Dayne Zorko - 250 votes

Dayne Beams - 249 votes

Stef Martin - 242 votes

Darcy Gardiner - 228 votes

Harris Andrews - 208 votes

Jarrod Berry - 205 votes

Hugh McCluggage - 200 votes

Luke Hodge - 185 votes

Nick Robertson - 172 votes

Alex Witherden - 170 votes

 

Dayne Zorko recovered from slow start in 2018. Picture: Michael Klein
Dayne Zorko recovered from slow start in 2018. Picture: Michael Klein

GOLD COAST

JARROD Harbrow cleaned up a host of awards including his first Gold Coast club championship.

Harbrow retraced his steps across the state as he also collected the Players' Player and Community awards and became the first player at the club to achieve life membership.

Having finished second behind two-time winner Tom Lynch in 2016, Harbrow claimed the top gong for the first time.

Harbrow, who played all 22 games in 2018, this week signed a two-year deal that ensures he will retire as a Sun.

He polled 390 votes, edging out Touk Miller (351) and first-year Sun Lachie Weller (336).

- Andrew Hamilton

TOP 10

Jarrod Harbrow 390

Touk Miller 351

Lachie Weller 336

Rory Thompson 316

Alex Sexton 303

David Swallow 300

Aaron Young 261

Jarrod Witts 251

Nick Holman 251

Jack Martin 249

Mark Blicavs upset higher-profile teammates to claim his second B&F.
Mark Blicavs upset higher-profile teammates to claim his second B&F.


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