Rolling All-Australian Team – Post Round Five

Round Five saw all clubs descend on the City of Churches for Gather Round. We saw some close games, some blowouts, and, most importantly, some players confirm their status as worthy of the Mongrel Punt Rolling AA Team, while others staked their claim as being too hard to ignore.

To refresh your memories, here’s how the round four team looked:


FB: Max Michalanney, Jacob Weitering, Jordan Dawson
HB: Nick Daicos, Callum Wilkie, Jack Sinclair
C: Mason Wood, Clayton Oliver, Josh Daicos

HF: Izak Rankine, Jeremy Cameron, Toby Greene
FF: Michito Owens, Charlie Curnow, Jack Higgins
Foll: Tim English, Marcus Bontempelli, Luke Davies-Uniacke
Int: Liam Baker, Patrick Cripps, Darcy Parish, Harry Sheezel, Mason Redman (sub)


In recent weeks some so-called media experts have discussed the most must-see players in the league. Unsurprisingly to most, the list was heavily weighted to midfielders. People watch different players for different reasons. For some, it’s about the tackle pressure, for others it’s about the big forwards clunking marks and kicking goals, and for others, it’s the dour defenders shutting down their opponent’s influence on the game. And, I guess, there’s the midfielders running around with leather poisoning.

A big part of this team is the eye test. A smaller part is the stats. All of these players are worthy of selection.

I guess I should stop stalling and dragging this out. *cue drum roll* here’s the Mongrel Punt’s Rolling All-Australian Team following Round Five.


FB: Max Michalanney, Luke Ryan, Jordan Dawson
HB: Nick Daicos, Callum Wilkie, Jack Sinclair
C: Mason Wood, Caleb Serong, Josh Daicos

HF: Izak Rankine, Jeremy Cameron, Toby Greene
FF: Michito Owens, Charlie Curnow, Oscar Allen
Foll: Tim English, Marcus Bontempelli, Luke Davies-Uniacke
Int: Liam Baker, Clayton Oliver, Darcy Parish, Harry Sheezel, Charlie Cameron (sub)


The Changes

There are only four new players to the team this week (one is a returning player, while three debuts for the first time in 2023).

Luke Ryan takes up the full-back post, as he returns to the team. While Jacob Weitering has had a solid season, he was obliterated against the Crows so Ryan’s strong form sees him reclaim his spot in the Mongrel XXIII.

Another Blue lost their place, that being skipper Patrick Cripps. Because we here at the Mongrel respect the players in all positions, we don’t overload with midfielders, so there is fierce competition for spots. Caleb Serong has been outstanding in nearly every game so far this season, and is making his debut in this team after round five – that speaks to the outstanding form and contributions from others so far this year. He will reside in the centre, while Clayton Oliver shifts from a starting midfield role, to the bench, taking Cripps’ spot there.

Replacing Jack ‘Snags’ Higgins after a quiet weekend, is Oscar Allen. He is the shining light at the Eagles in 2023 and is one of a small group of players to have kicked multiple goals in every game this year. His four goals on the weekend kicked the door down and forced us to take notice.

The final change is the sub. Mason Redman is very stiff, given he’s had a great season, but Charlie Cameron deserves a spot on the team and the best we can do is have him come on after half-time and take over the game. The Lions forward had a slowish start to the year, but continues to show why he is one of their more important players.


The Watch List

So, we’ve seen the team. What about those who are playing well and didn’t make it? They need to maintain the rage and keep doing what they’re doing. Here are some of the players awfully close to sneaking in.

One of my favourite players to watch at the moment is the cult-figure ruckman at the Bombers, Sam Draper. The big man with the mullet kicked three goals on the weekend and, in partnership with teammate Andrew Phillips, made life difficult for Brodie Grundy – no mean feat. If Draper can continue this form, any falter from English could see him replaced.

The ‘best celebrator in the game’ as BT calls him, otherwise known as Tom Papley reminded everyone on the weekend why he’s one of the premier small forwards in the game. While he can sometimes drift out of games or have quiet weeks, at his best, he is very, very good. And with no Jed Bews for the Cats this week, he could kick another bag.

A left-field name is Beau McCreery. Similar to Max Michalanney in terms of not being picked for the volume of possessions they have, McCreery is a role-player who brings the best out of his teammates and allows them the chance to dominate. He’s the sort of player everyone would want as a teammate.

For Darcy Fogarty, missing a few games has hurt his chances of being in the side. However, if he continues to play the way he has when he’s been in the team, he will inevitably find his way into the side. Also from the Crows, another who is a victim of us only picking a select number of midfielders, is Rory Laird. He continues to collect possessions for fun, while also winning the hard-ball and setting up his teammates.

Finally, there’s Noah Anderson. While the Suns are languishing towards the bottom of the ladder, Anderson is one of the players who can keep his head up. His gut running, good disposal, and ability to stay engaged in the game for long periods make him a difficult match up and might find him in the side, if others should fade.

That’s all for this week. Let us know your thoughts – and I’m putting a caveat on that. Don’t just list someone who should be in/out, list who they replace/replaces them and why.


Stay tuned on our socials and find out who’s in next week.


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