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Riewoldt overlooked for All-Australian honour

Date

Jesse Hogan

2012 All Australian players are presented at the Royal Exhibition Building in Melbourne last night.

2012 All Australian players are presented at the Royal Exhibition Building in Melbourne last night. Photo: Getty Images

RICHMOND spearhead Jack Riewoldt has become just the second Coleman medallist in 13 seasons to miss out on All-Australian selection.

Selectors decided that Riewoldt's 65 goals - the lowest tally to win the goalkicking medal for 50 years - was not enough to earn a spot in the 2012 team of the year, with Hawthorn's Lance Franklin (centre half-forward) and Geelong big man Tom Hawkins (full-forward) named in the two key forward posts.

The Riewoldt snub - the first of its kind since St Kilda's Fraser Gehrig was overlooked in 2005 despite being that year's Coleman medallist - was one of several surprise selections in the forward line.

The 2012 All-Australian team.

The 2012 All-Australian team.

Fremantle superstar Matthew Pavlich was also denied his seventh All-Australian honour, with the selection panel instead choosing to name a resting ruckman, West Coast's Dean Cox; a resting midfielder, Adelaide's Brownlow Medal fancy Patrick Dangerfield, and two small forwards, Hawthorn's Cyril Rioli and St Kilda's Stephen Milne, instead of three genuine key forwards, as has been the case in previous years.

That Cox was not the first-choice ruckman, and was upstaged by his own tag team partner Nic Naitanui, was another selection that has sparked debate.

Most media commentators had predicted Cox was a lock for the No. 1 ruck spot, believing it would then be a close call between Richmond's boom recruit Ivan Maric and Adelaide big man Sam Jacobs for the No. 2 position.

The All-Australian captain for 2012, West Coast's Darren Glass (left) speaks with Essendon's Jobe Watson last night.

The All-Australian captain for 2012, West Coast's Darren Glass (left) speaks with Essendon's Jobe Watson last night. Photo: Getty Images

Naitanui, who ranked fifth in the AFL for hitouts and averaged below Cox in almost every key category, was barely in the conversation.

Pavlich's elevation to the group of seven-time stars - such as Wayne Carey, Nathan Buckley, Stephen Silvagni and Terry Daniher - was considered by some to be near automatic after the Dockers captain grabbed the competition by storm for an extended stretch mid-season.

The 30-year-old was the hottest player in the AFL between rounds 10 and 19 when he produced 44 goals in nine games, including match-winning bags of eight, seven and another two of six.

Several senior commentators even predicted Pavlich could be named All-Australian captain after leading the Dockers to the finals with a home-and-away season tally of 62 goals, which put him equal runner-up with Hawkins behind Riewoldt.

The honour of All-Australian captain instead went to West Coast key defender Darren Glass, who was named in the back pocket, while Gold Coast skipper Gary Ablett was voted vice-captain.

News of Pavlich's non-selection leaked out early today after he revealed to media he had not been invited to the ceremony.

Pavlich, who will fly to Melbourne later in the week for hip surgery that will require 6-8 weeks' recovery, said he was unconcerned by the eyebrow-raising selection, delivered by a panel made up of Kevin Bartlett, Gerard Healy, Leigh Matthews, Luke Darcy, Glen Jakovich, Mark Ricciuto, Danny Frawley and AFL officials Adrian Anderson and Andrew Demetriou, the non-voting chairman.

''Individual awards aren't what you play footy for, it's team success,'' he said prior to the ceremony.

''I didn't have the greatest start to the year but certainly felt like I really contributed towards the end of the year and impacted and influenced the games really strongly.''

However it wasn't all bad news for Fremantle, with defender Luke McPharlin earning his first All-Australian jumper - one of 15 first-timers - which is the most in history since the then-VFL began picking a team of the year from 1982.

The other debutants included St Kilda defender Sean Dempster, Hawthorn pair Grant Birchall and Rioli, West Coast defender Beau Waters, Sydney duo Ted Richards and Josh Kennedy, Richmond midfield partners Trent Cotchin and Brett Deledio, Essendon captain Jobe Watson, Collingwood's Dayne Beams, Adelaide tag team Scott Thompson and Dangerfield, as well as Hawkins and Naitanui.

The ruck pairing of Naitanui and Cox ensured the Eagles, which finished the season in fifth, provided the most players from one club with four, while Hawthorn and Collingwood each had three representatives, with the Pies' star midfielders Dane Swan and Scott Pendlebury named on the bench.

27 comments so far

  • Any chance The Age might put the actual team on thier website ?

    Commenter
    Paul
    Location
    Melboune
    Date and time
    September 18, 2012, 6:25AM
    • That's a most sensible suggestion, Paul! Apologies it wasn't attached sooner.

      Commenter
      Daniel Sankey, Editor, theage.com.au
      Date and time
      September 18, 2012, 7:09AM
  • How can Pavlich miss out as a Carlton supporter each time I saw Freo on TV he stood out, again we seem to get these obvious selections wrong year after year but after watching Luke Darcy on TV and some of his ideas astound me likewise Adrian Anderson all He seems to do is try and complicate everything he speaks about like every Lawyer get back to the KISS principle instead of reading something into what is in essence a simple game trying to be reinvented by try hards

    Commenter
    lozzam
    Location
    templestowe
    Date and time
    September 18, 2012, 6:37AM
    • I'm surprised Harry Taylor didn't make it into the team, somewhere in the backline. The bloke can play almost anywhere and is such a reliable mark. I'd also take Pavlich over Hawkins, despite the former's slow start to the season.

      Commenter
      gooddroprob
      Date and time
      September 18, 2012, 6:43AM
      • I'm glad Deledio got in with Cotch. They were both huge for the Tigers and hopefully will be co-captains. Disappointed for big Ivan Maric. Nic Nat wouldn't last a whole season if Cox wasn't in the side. Kieren Jack missing is possibly an indictable offence. Thought a few North players were in All Aussie form this year too. Finally, why is Duke Farcy on the selection panel?

        Commenter
        Joe Citizen
        Location
        Melb
        Date and time
        September 18, 2012, 6:50AM
        • As a Tigers supporter Reiwoldt had no right to be in side

          Commenter
          Barry
          Date and time
          September 18, 2012, 7:31AM
          • Well , to stir the rest of you up , i think the whole All-Australian idea is a joke. It's not as if the All-Oz team is going to compete internationally.Like the "International Rules " waste of time. It is a team sport , invented in this country ,(adapted from indigenous game ), played in this country alone.And that's fine . We're proud of our game and we love it.. And club loyalty is paramount, one reason we can't even get State-of Origin going again , so why All Australian , especially as it leads to all the arguments about who should or shouldn't be in it . Most of these arguments based on club loyalties anyway . Which reminds me - of course Josh Gibson should have been selected (lol)

            Commenter
            daniel
            Location
            rural nsw
            Date and time
            September 18, 2012, 7:32AM
            • Well said. Its not like anyone else in the world will play AFL. All Australian, what else would they be....
              What a waste of an article.

              Commenter
              Steven
              Location
              Malvern
              Date and time
              September 18, 2012, 8:07AM
          • LOL....Glad to see that the annual joke is still good for another year. The "All Australian Team" , and whom will they play, Ireland....whom did they play last year, Ireland......who will they play next year.......Ireland. It is pathetic they way the AFL tries to get recognition as an a sport with international connections.

            Commenter
            Thomas Collins
            Location
            Melbourne
            Date and time
            September 18, 2012, 7:32AM
            • IS that Stephen milne in the photo , the only one with his hands in his pockets and untidy suit looking like a yobbo. And are there sunnies on his head? All class .

              Commenter
              daniel
              Location
              rural nsw
              Date and time
              September 18, 2012, 7:37AM

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