Top Eight: Hidden Gems of the SANFLW. Part Two
Updated: Mar 4, 2020
We have said it once and we will say it again; football is a chaotic game. So much though that even great players and players with high potential can be overlooked … which is why we have taken to calling these valuable but often overlooked players as Hidden Gems.
These hidden gems are great players that have the potential to even better; but they don’t receive much attention.
Why don’t they receive much attention?
Well maybe it is because they don’t have countless accolades to their name, wrack up huge numbers or, as is the case with some of these players, missed several games due to injury. But at the end of the day, these players are all great in one way or another; which is why we like to put the well-earned spotlight on them for a change.
So, without further ado, these are the Top Eight Hidden Gems of the SANFLW (part two).
#8 Melanie Elsegood (West Adelaide)
To start off our list; we would like to introduce you to West Adelaide’s Melanie Elsegood. Melanie is only in her early 20s so she has plenty of time to become a bigger name than she currently is; and considering her performance this SANFLW season, it shouldn’t take long. That is because she kicked ten goals in nine games for the Bloods this year, while also finishing with a total of 53 disposals at a respectable 60% efficiency. We have mentioned are few times how the poor Bloods keeping falling just short of playing finals; but players like Melanie will prove to be very valuable in the not so distant future.
#7 Ellen Fauser (Glenelg)
Glenelg’s Ellen Fauser is a perfect example of someone who plays their role brilliantly. Ten games for ten goals; but if that wasn’t enough, she also collected 117 disposals and averaged two tackles a game. But if for some strange reason that still isn’t enough to satisfy you, Ellen also averaged four marks a game … which adds up to place her ninth in the league for total marks this season. Just a few of these stats on their own are impressive, so considering that they all belong to the same player; Ellen Fauser will not remain a hidden gem for much longer.
#6 Tiffany Copley (South Adelaide)
The number six spot goes to one of the Panthers newest additions for the 2019 season. Originally from the McLaren Football Club, this accomplished surf lifesaver proved to be a healthy inclusion for reigning premiers. Her first SANFLW season saw her play seven games, including the 2019 Grand Final; and saw her collect a respectable 49 disposals. While Tiffany played her role brilliantly throughout the season; a great player is able to step up in the big moments, and that is exactly what she did. As she kicked her first and only SANFLW goal in this year’s Semi Final to seal South Adelaide’s 13-point win. A great player with a great attitude … all she is missing is some well-earned attention.
#5 Adrienne Davies (North Adelaide)
Is Adrienne Davies a hidden gem? Well we think she may be, but it is a miracle considering her performance this SANFLW season. A proud North Adelaide player; Adrienne collected 138 disposals and kicked four goals from 13 games this season. Add to this, an average of three tackles and two inside 50s a game, and it equals a player with a high level of talent. So, we will go back to the question we asked before, is she a hidden gem? Maybe she is or maybe she’s not; but regardless, she deserves to be a lot bigger name than she currently is. But if she can keep this effort up, it wont take too long.
#4 Caitlen Teague (Central District)
We stumbled upon Caitlen Teague while doing our research and it surprised us that we weren’t fully aware of her. Caitlen is only in her early 20s which means she has plenty of playing years left; and if her recent performance is anything to go by, these years have the potential to be very bright. Joining the Bulldogs for their inaugural SANFLW season, she racked up an impressive 85 disposals from ten games. To add to this, she also showcased some great pressure, averaging five tackles and two clearances a game. All of this adds up to make Caitlen a player that deserves some attention, and if she can continue performances like this, that is exactly what she will get.
#3 Lucy Griffith (Sturt)
This youngster from Sturt is arguably on the border between being a big-name and a hidden gem; or at the very least she deserves to be a bigger name player. Regardless, her performance this season is too good to go unnoticed. Lucy played ten games this year in the double blue and collected an outstanding 101 disposals at an efficiency of 60 percent. This coupled with an average of nearly five tackles a game and a scoring accuracy of 100 percent is impressive to say the least. Although to be honest, this scoring accuracy is because she kicked one goal from one shot, but it still counts. However, at the end of the day Lucy’s performance this year was a great one and considering her age; she will not remain a hidden gem for long.
#2 Elke Jarvis (South Adelaide)
South Adelaide’s Elke Jarvis sits at number two on our list. Originally, she played just one game in 2018 as a ruck/forward but we didn’t really get to see what she was capable of. Fast forward to 2019, and she finally got another chance, this time in defence. But this time, Elke made the absolute most of her opportunity and ended up playing the remaining five games of the season. Using the skills that she developed after years of volleyball, Elke’s marking proved to be her greatest strength while she also showcased great pace and agility for someone of her height. After going under the radar for nearly a year and a half; she proved to be one of South’s most improved players and has a 2019 SANFLW Premiership medallion to prove it.
#1 Milli Gentle (Glenelg)
For number one on our list, we decided to go with a perfect example of a hidden gem. Not many people would have heard of this 18-year-old from Glenelg; and that is due to the fact that Milli Gentle only joined the club midway through the season and played two games before being sidelined due to injury. So, why have we gone with a two gamer for our number one spot? Well it all comes down to potential; and if her career back in NSW tells us anything, it is that she has a lot of potential. She is a two-time state player for the NSW/ACT as well as a time-time Best and Fairest for the Snowy Mountain Bears, which as a defender is a great feat in itself. In fact, the only reason she is a hidden gem is because she didn’t grow up here, or else most would know of her by now. However, if she can get a full SANFLW season under her belt than this might change. Regardless, she is perfect for our number one spot.
Thank you to all those who nominated.
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