The Claremont Tigers will face East Fremantle in next week’s WAFL Colts’ Grand Final, after they overcame East Perth by 12 points at Leederville Oval on Sunday morning.
They will be aiming to complete a hat-trick of WAFL Colts premierships from their fifth consecutive Grand Final appearance.
Callan England starred for the Tigers with 26 possessions and two goals, while Christian Ameduri toiled hard for the Royals with 18 possessions and 10 tackles.
Matt Young kicked the first goal of the game for East Perth when he drilled a low bullet from 40 metres out in the opening minutes of the quarter. It wasn’t until the ninth minute that Claremont posted its first goal, with Jacob Orr dribbling one through. A few moments later, England roved a contest expertly and nailed through the Tigers’ second goal. Liam Martin managed to take a strong contested mark inside forward and kicked a goal for the Royals, and the margin was just two points at quarter-time.
In the fourth minute of the second quarter, Rhai-Arn Cox kicked a clever snap after he was front and centre of a pack inside forward 50. But for the rest of the quarter, neither side could kick a goal, as they both squandered chances.
Martin continued his good form when he took another contested mark inside 50 and booted his second goal, just after the Tigers hit the scoreboard. In the 20th minute, Ameduri sent a chaos ball inside the Royals’ forward 50, which bounced over a Claremont defender and into Martin’s arms who turned around and banged through his third goal. In the dying stages of the quarter, AFL Academy member Jack Buller drilled through his first goal of the game, to reduce the margin to just five points.
The final quarter was all Claremont’s way as they kicked into another gear. Nicholas Allan, Orr and England all kicked goals for the Tigers, and it took a 50 metre penalty late in the quarter for East Perth to hit the scoreboard, through Thomas Baulch. However, in the 23rd minute, Will Powell slotted the sealer for the Tigers’ victory.
Next week the Sharks await the Tigers at Domain Stadium.
Below were the best players.
JACK BLAAUW | MIDFIELD | 175cm | 74kg
Another week, another productive outing for Blaauw. Against the Royals, he accumulated 19 possessions (15 contested), laid eight tackles, won four clearances, recorded four inside 50s and took three marks in a solid outing. What made his performance even more special was the fact that he overcame a shoulder injury during the game.
JACK BULLER | KEY FORWARD | 194cm | 85kg
A recent addition to the AFL Academy, Buller displayed some of the traits as to why he was invited into the prestigious program. He only gathered eight possessions, but he had three score involvements, including a goal, highlighting his forward prowess. His ability to pinch hit in the ruck would have recruiters monitoring him for the 2019 AFL Draft.
LEWIS DAVIS | RUCK | 197cm | 82kg
The imposing big man produced another outstanding finals match, He finished with 11 possessions, 24 hit-outs, nine tackles, five marks (three contested), four inside 50s and three score assists, to dominate his direct opponent Jedd Edwards (6 possessions & 25 hit-outs).
CALLAN ENGLAND | MIDFIELD | 182cm | 73kg
Arguably the best player on the ground, England produced a performance that would have recruiters’ salivating over his potential. He gathered 26 possessions (11 contested), won seven clearances, grabbed six marks, got the ball inside 50 on six occasions and kicked two goals. Despite being a smaller midfielder, England isn’t afraid to put his body on the line, not unlike the way Fremantle star Lachie Neale plays.
DECLAN MCNAMARA | MIDFIELD | 177cm | 79kg
The Royals FC junior was at his bustling best for the Tigers, with 22 possessions, seven tackles, six clearances, six inside 50s, five marks, a score assist and a goal in a phenomenal display. He is proving to be the perfect foil for both England and Patmore.
SHAQUILLE MORTON | HALF-FORWARD | 170cm | 65kg
The explosive half-forward flanker was at his creative best for Claremont. He finished with 17 possessions, five tackles, three clearances, two marks and two inside 50s in a dazzling display, His pace and footy nous worried the Royals’ defenders.
JAKE PATMORE | MIDFIELD | 181cm | 78kg
The AFL Academy member showcased why he is so highly touted for this year’s draft. He finished with 25 possessions (10 contested), six clearances, four marks, and four tackles in an outing characterised by skill and class. His ability to create something out of nothing is remarkable as is his dare to run and carry with the ball in hand.
CHRISTIAN AMEDURI | MIDFIELD | 186cm | 76kg
The heart-and-soul of the East Perth Colts, Ameduri displayed why he is so highly rated. He gathered 18 possessions (eight contested), laid 10 tackles, took three marks, recorded three inside 50s, and won two clearances in a typically tough performance.
JAXON CAHILL | HALF-BACK | 188cm | 74kg
A smooth-mover off the half back line, Cahill demonstrated why he is one of the elite players of the competition. He accumulated 18 possessions, rebounded the ball out of defensive 50 on four occasions and got the ball inside 50 three times.
DAMON GREAVES | HALF-BACK | 185cm | 77kg
The bottom ager proved why he will be a highly rated prospect for next year’s draft. Against the Tigers he collected 14 possessions, rebounded the ball out of defensive 50 on seven occasions, laid three tackles and grabbed two marks in a sensational performance. He is a player well worth keeping tabs on, in season 2018.
LOUIS MILLER | DEFENDER | 188cm | 84kg
Like Greaves, Miller is an under-ager but put on a performance to make sure recruiters have him in the back of their minds for the 2018 Draft. He recorded 16 possessions, four marks and two tackles in an excellent game.
BRANDON STARCEVICH | MIDFIELD | 187cm | 88kg
A powerful “midfield bull,” Starcevich often used his big frame to try and burst his way through stoppages. He finished with 19 possessions (11 contested), four tackles, two clearances, and two inside 50s in performance full of power. There is a reason why he is going to the National Combine, as any club would love a brute to join their midfield.
MATTHEW YOUNG | MIDFIELD | 187cm | 83kg
The Augusta Margaret River junior was prolific for the Royals in the midfield. He gathered a team-high 19 possessions (11 contested), laid seven tackles, won six clearances, recorded six inside 50s and kicked a goal in a display that was dazzling. He was desperately unlucky not to get at least a state combine invite.