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Sons of the Suns: mock Gold Coast 22 for Round 1, 2011

Mock GC17 team for 2011

The Gold Coast Suns will have something old, something new, something borrowed, something… NRL?

GOLD COAST, AUSTRALIA - MAY 31: Karmichael Hunt walks on the beach after the GCFC AFL Press conference at the North Burleigh Surf Life Saving Club on May 31, 2010 in Gold Coast, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

I haven’t seen anyone do this quite yet so I thought it would be an interesting exercise to try to fashion a starting 22 for round 1 of the 2011 AFL season for the new Gold Coast Sun franchise.

We know a few things: that the GC17 recruiters led by Scott Clayton will take somewhere between eight and 12 established players from other clubs; that they have more first-round picks in next year’s draft than I’ve had hot dinners; and that they are not going to trade away any of those first-rounders for established stars.

So then, here’s my lash at the 22 that every fantasy coach will be sweating on in six months’ time.

B: Jarrod Harbrow, Karmichael Hunt, Campbell Brown
HB: Nathan Krakouer, Michael Coad, Sam Iles
C: David Swallow, Daniel Harris, Roland Ah Chee
HF: Jared Brennan, Cameron Mooney, Harley Bennell
F: Jack Darling, David Hale, Brandon Matera
Foll: Zac Smith, Michael Rischitelli, Gary Ablett jnr
Int: Steven May, Josh Toy, Daniel Gorringe, Danny Stanley

This team can be broken down as follows.

  • Eight poached AFL players: Harbrow, Brown, Krakouer, Brennan, Mooney, Hale, Rischitelli and Ablett jnr. Other names that are credible chances to appear on this list (according to rumour) are Nathan Bock, Quinten Lynch, Matthew Spangher, Steven Salopek, Travis Boak, Bachar Houli, Shaun Grigg, and David Armitage. If you’re wondering why there are two Cats and two Lions when the rules say that you can only poach one uncontracted player per AFL team, that’s a good question, especially if Clayton wants to hold firm on not trading first round picks. The rumours are strong about all four players, though.
  • Three recycled AFL players: Harris, Iles and Stanley. Like these three, Nathan Ablett is also currently listed for the Gold Coast’s VFL side, but his body is questionable so he may not get up for 2011, especially for round 1. Other possibilities for recruitment from lower leagues include Cleve Hughes, Matt Little and the evergreen Mitch Thorp.
  • Two mature-agers: Hunt and Coad. The former is a complete unknown for fantasy purposes, but the latter will be in every serious DT/SC team in round 1 next year barring injury.
  • Four kids who are already listed for GC: Smith, Ah Chee, Matera and Toy. Smith is going to be the #1 ruck for the Suns and should play out the year if he survives the rough and tumble of weekly battering by established giants. Toy is another 22-game candidate. A smaller player like Matera will benefit from the extra preseason that all four of these lads have had in 2010. Since these players are all likely to be basement rookie price, if they look like they have strong JS (job security) they will be in a lot of fantasy sides as well. Smith, in particular, will be a no-brainer bench ruck.
  • Five 2010 draftees: Swallow, Bennell, Darling, Gorringe and May. All but May will likely be first rounders, so they will attract price premiums. The first two in particular are locked in as the first two picks for GC and should be bought with the same level of confidence as those who snagged Jack Trengove and Tom Scully this year. May will most probably be a zone pick as he comes from the Northern Territory, so he will represent fantasy value. The other two are more speculative at this stage depending on which mock draft you believe, though given that Mooney and Hale are ageing stopgap solutions, you’d expect Scott Clayton to plump for young key position talent. In that vein, the likes of Scott Lycett (202cm ruck) and Lucas Cook (194cm tall forward) may also get snapped up by the GC later in the first round to vie for round 1 selection.

The above is highly speculative of course, but I hope it gives you some indication as to the balance of the GC17 list. Depending on how this year’s trade period goes, the Suns may be able to secure another four signatures of uncontracted AFL players, which would change the mix a lot. Then again that best 22 assumes no injuries, so if a number of those senior players have interrupted preseasons the round 1 side could be looking a whole lot younger.

I could see as much as half of that team making very strong cases, collectively and individually, to be in your fantasy squads next year. How many do you think you will be able to fit in… or even want to? Tell me in the comments.



  1. Ozzstriker

    July 20, 2010 at 8:40 am

    You mentioned several mock drafts have already been complied/created… Where abouts can the most reputable be found?

  2. m0nty

    July 20, 2010 at 8:59 am

    The drafts board on BigFooty is a decent source, Ozzstriker. There was one on TAC Cup Future Stars recently too.

  3. Ozzstriker

    July 20, 2010 at 11:06 am

    Thanks Monty, have you personally found the time to do any scouting of potential upcoming talent? If so, who looks like they may have the ‘ready made’ AFL body… Someone in the vein of a Dustin Martin who looks right at home in the AFL and should play from day dot?

  4. Dave085

    July 20, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    You would imagine that there are going to be very similar sides at the beginning of next year depending on the new rules that the 17th team will bring with them. More similar than this year for sure and will make trading very very important.
    Will make for a boring start but i think it will get very interesting in the mid-year and finals.

  5. moiecoute

    July 20, 2010 at 1:12 pm

    If we are going to make a new team could we please come up with something original and not steal it from an NBA team.

    Sigh !!!!

  6. penguins00

    July 20, 2010 at 2:13 pm

    My guess is David Swallow. He was very early snapped up to train with the Gold Coast earlier in the year. They said we’ll definitely be using one of our first 3 picks on him. He’s meant to be something special.

  7. UpDog

    July 20, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    One person that I know who will fit right in, is Bennell. Having played against him for a few years, it is obvious he has a natural talent and is going to be right at home in AFL.

  8. juzzo7

    July 20, 2010 at 4:41 pm

    Good stuff monty but I disagree on the third pick. Darling had an average u18 carnival and if they want a key forward surely they would look at SA’s much hyped Sam Day?
    Also cant see why mooney would leave geelong, they wont offer him anywhere near what they did ablett and Travis Boak is contracted next year.
    I’ll throw in a dark horse too- Andrew Krakouer has been destroying the WAFL this year they could take a punt on him especially if they get Nathan(cousins i think) too.

  9. lewis

    July 20, 2010 at 5:33 pm

    Great stuff Monty, It makes very interesting reading. I am interested in your thoughts what the compensation for the poached players respective clubs will be and How you determined such value.

    Keep up the good work!!

  10. Kazakhstan

    July 20, 2010 at 6:05 pm

    @juzzo7: Mooney has publicly come out and say he will probably reitre to the Gold Coast when his playing days are over.

  11. jrock

    July 20, 2010 at 6:25 pm

    Let’s assume Gary Ablett, Nathan Krakeour and Jarrad Harbrow are the only ones to make the move. I reckon McKenna would reward the form of alot of his young charges that have been on the list for over a year and the base of the team would be made up of them, with a sprinkling of previously listed players and 2010 draftees. Here’s one for you:

    B: Jarrad Harbrow Michael Coad Sam Iles
    HB: Nathan Krakouer Michael Gugliotta Andrew Krakouer
    C: Trent Mackenzie Daniel Harris David Swallow
    HF: Harely Bennell Charlie Dixon Alik Magin
    F: Brandon Matera Nathan Ablett Liam Patrick
    R: Zac Smith Josh Toy Gary Ablett Jr
    IC: Karmichael Hunt Marc Lock Roland Ah Chee Sam Day

  12. cdrobert

    July 20, 2010 at 8:00 pm


    i think Darling was hoping an average under 18 carnival may help him slip through to the eagles first round pick. He looks top notch

  13. UpDog

    July 20, 2010 at 11:57 pm

    I was lead to believe that GC was locking in Darling as pick 1, and that Blayne Wilson (WA U18’s CHB) was a very high chance to be drafted to GC and play in the first year. Just what I’ve heard down her in WA but may be different over there.

  14. Skins07

    July 21, 2010 at 3:14 pm

    I can remember hearing Bluey McKenna saying they aimed at being a Premiership contender in 4-5 years, and wouldn’t chase any player who wouldn’t be at the club for that period. Wouldn’t that rule out Moons? I know he’s said he’d like to go up there, but that doesn’t mean they want him.

  15. wingman

    July 21, 2010 at 7:59 pm

    jrock, you’ve listed karmichael on the bench despite him being one of the highest paid players?

  16. phenom

    July 21, 2010 at 8:45 pm

    Cameron Mooney?

    AHAHAHA What the Hell man.

  17. cptFantasy

    July 22, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    Add Joel MacDonald to that list, I’ve heard a rumour he’s waiting for the Suns to come in so he can head back home to Queensland.

  18. Cicjose

    July 24, 2010 at 11:39 pm

    GAJ will be at Geelong for his whole career

  19. magpies76

    July 27, 2010 at 5:14 am

    Boak has signed for 2 more years, John Anthnoy will head up to the Gold Coast and possibly Shaun Hampson as well. Sam Day is a must to put into your SC team next year

  20. Bassat

    July 30, 2010 at 10:10 pm

    salopek has signed with gold coast.
    dad works with his best friend

  21. magpiemic

    August 4, 2010 at 9:23 pm

    Campbell Brown K. Hunt A. Selwood
    Chad Cornes Tayte Pears Nat Krakouer
    Brandon Matera Daniel Harris S. Salopek
    HF L Jetta Rhys Stanley John Anthony
    Colin Sylvia Kurt Tippett Charlie Dixon
    Dean Cox Steve Johnson Brad Dick

    INT Taylor Hunt,, Ryan Bastinac, Nathan Ablett, K. Pendlebury Taylor Hine, Josh Toy, Michael Jamison Kane Lucas, Dawson Simpson, Jaxson Barham

  22. BenW

    August 15, 2010 at 2:03 pm

    magpiemic i do not believe that ANYONE would want Jetta in their forward line, as he kicks 1 goal every 20 shots the poor bloke, and your team looks like a current AFL player jumble sale collection. no way they’ll get all those guys (especially seeing as only one per club is the limit).

  23. magpiemic

    August 19, 2010 at 6:56 pm

    Faur enough, what about this?
    Campbell Brown K. Hunt J. Habrow
    A Krakouer Nat Bock Nat Krakouer
    Brandon Matera D Swallow S. Salopek
    Sam Iles Rhys Stanley John Anthony
    Luke Shreeve Nathan ABLET Charlie Dixon
    Zac Smith Michael Rischitelli G. Ablett

    Maverick WELLER, Josh TOY Taylor Hunt, Ryan Bastinac, , K. Pendlebury Taylor Hine, Dawson Simpson, Jaxson Barham

  24. Fenno

    September 2, 2010 at 8:12 pm

    Bassat Salopek can’t have signed with the gold coast because they can only have 1 from each club.

  25. Kazakhstan

    September 20, 2010 at 2:12 pm

    Looking pretty close so far, m0nty. 😀

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