NAB AFL National Draft LIVE

Join community footy writer, Beth Newman, for the National Draft as it happens.

7:45pm: It’s all over. Sorry for the break, been going backstage for interviews.

Look out for stories with James Aish, Lewis Taylor and Kade Kolodjashnij later tonight.

11 – Dom Sheed (West Coast)
12  – Ben Lennon (Richmond)
13 – Patrick Cripps (Carlton)
14 – Cameron McCarthy
15 – Zak Jones (Sydney)
16 – Geelong taking some time, and the microphone’s not on – Darcy Lang it is!
17 – Michael Apeness (Fremantle)
18 – Luke Dunstan (St Kilda)
19 – St Kilda milking the time – West Australian Blake Acres gets the nod.
20 – Jack Leslie (Gold Coast SUNS)

6:30pm: Top 10 rounded out by Collingwood picking Nathan Freeman. His family is stoked – reckon he’s pretty happy too. Back slapping, hugs, they’ve got it all. Great to see.

6:28pm: Melbourne takes Christian Salem. Yesterday, Salem spoke about the prospect of heading to the Demons and playing under Paul Roos. Check it out here:

6:27pm: Luke McDonald to the Kangaroos – no one saw that coming. He’s not here because he’s in Utah for training already.

The highest father-son pick since bidding began – still some consider him a steal at pick eight.

6:25pm: The Lions get James Aish. Going to be an absolute gun. Ready made for AFL football.

6:24pm: Matthew Scharenberg, under an injury cloud heading into the draft, goes to Collingwood. That likely means SANFL gun, James Aish, is headed to the Lions.

6:22pm: Pick 5: Kade Kolodjashni to the Gold Coast SUNS. One that goes as expected.

The first player to a Queensland club – now he’ll be crossing his fingers that twin brother Jake makes it to the SUNS too.

Reckon the most relieved bloke after that pick, is the SUNS recruiter who had to read his name out.

6:20pm: BONTEMPELLI TO THE BULLDOGS! He’s breathing a massive sigh of relief as his name is called out. The biggest X-factor of the draft, Bontempelli has been earmarked anywhere between no.3 and no.17.

His highlights package mentions ‘he clearly needs to put on weight.”  Wish I had that problem.

This pick could have major ramifications for the Lions and Collingwood, who were tipped to take the big man.

6:20pm: The AFL officials on stage enjoying themselves – certainly not feeling the pressure of the kids in the audience.

6:19pm: Jack Billings to St Kilda – speculation that Marcus Bontempelli might be headed to Seaford, but Billings gets the nods.

6:18pm: Kelly narrowly missed out on selection in the 2012 mini-draft ,for the best 17 year-olds, and won the 3km time trial at the Draft Combine for the second year, last month. Pretty handy pick up for the Giants.

6:17pm: Josh Kelly goes no. 2. Things going as expected. Kelly’s dad has one of the biggest smiles so far. See if any other parents can beat that – surely there’ll be some tears of joy at some point.

6:15pm: Boyd: “Mixture of excitement and relief.” “Super excited to be joining the GWS Giants.

Says some of the other players might supersede his own talents – now, that’s modesty!

6:14pm: First shock of the night! Nah, just joking – Tom Boyd is announced as the no. 1 pick, heading to GWS.

6:13pm: Here we goooooo…………

“Who will be my new teammates?” “Who will pick me?” “How will I handle the big time?”

All these questions about to be answered.

6:09pm: Andrew Demetriou takes time in his opening address to pay tribute to AFL Queensland State Talent Manager, Troy Clarke, who was a pioneer in Gold Coast footy.

State Talent Manager, Bob Batty, tearing up as Demetriou thanks him for his contribution to footy.


6:08pm: Sydney Swans coach, John Longmire looking decidedly serious as the camera pans the crowd.

6:06pm: All the talking is about to end now. Happy to be sitting in the media seats, rather than the drafting seats tonight.

6:04pm: The top 10 is up first, and here’s the order again:

1. GWS
2. GWS
3. St Kilda
4. Western Bulldogs
5. Gold Coast
6. Collingwood
7. Brisbane Lions
8. North Melbourne
9. Melbourne
10. Collingwood

6:02pm: We’ve got Fox Footy’s Jason Dunstall, Brad Johnson and Alastair Lynch, as well as AFL Talent Manager, Kevin Sheehan, to take us through the night. “Shifter” a bit smaller than he seems on TV.

6:00pm: Here we go. Opening with a vid of Brad Johnson, voiced by the great man himself. Plenty has changed since Johnno was picked.

Overlayed with ‘Pumping Blood’, bet there’s plenty of butterflies in the room now.

5:56pm: Queensland talent legend, Bob Batty, is here tonight for what will be his last draft before he retires, after 26 years in the game .We’ll miss you, Bob!

5:53pm: Mick Ablett says the draft will be life-changing. Different to previous years, with clubs picking for needs early. An abundance of elite midfielders in the mix.

5:52pm: Posters of all the past top draft picks on the walls here. Some senational haircuts on these banners.

5:47pm: This year’s potential top 10 draft picks and their families are getting ever closer to the end of a very nervous wait. Well, unless you’re Tom Boyd.

5:45pm: Mick Ablett and Peter Laser interviewing West Coast Eagles legend, Glen Jakovich, and he sas it’s really important to remember where they come from.

5:43pm: Both Queensland clubs have a pick in the top 10 – SUNS at no. 5 and Lions at no. 7.

5:35pm: As a footy fan, the AFL Draft is one of my favourite events – both seeing legends of the game and also the next generation. It’s rare that so much of the AFL community is all in the one place and there’s plenty of big names in the room – and that’s just the media.

5:30pm: It’s been a massive week of events on the Coast this week, and tonight’s draft caps it off.

There are plenty of people piling into the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre seats now, while the clubs are readying themselves for the picks.

To give you an idea of our location – we’re jut to the side of the AFL clubs – right near the front half of the alphabet, with Adelaide, Brisbane and Carlton the closest.

5:23pm: We had a chat with NAB AFL Auskick Ambassador, Shane Crawford -here’s the link for that: 

5:22pm: Welcome to tonight’s AFL Draft live blog. I’ll be bringing you all of the draft news, interviews and observations from a Queensland point of view.

And on that note, this year is already going well for the Sunshine Staters – three guys will definitely be called out, with Jono Freeman (Academy Selection), Adam Oxley (rookie upgrade) and Tom Bell (rookie upgrade) already locked in.

We’ve got our fingers crossed that some more Queensland players will be picked, and it’s only a matter of time before we find out.

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