Jake Niall is a senior sports writer at The Age, specialising in AFL football. Jake joined The Age in 1998, having previously worked as a sports writer on The Sunday Age. He writes a blend of news, feature articles and a weekly column during the football season. Before joining The Sunday Age, Jake was a freelance reporter in the US and a regular contributor to The Sunday Age and The Age from Los Angeles, covering diverse areas like politics, earthquakes, celebrity trials and American sport. Jake ghost wrote the autobiography (‘Collingwood and Me’, 1991) of champion Collingwood footballer Peter Daicos. While he writes primarily about the AFL, he spends the month of January covering tennis, especially the Australian Open. In 2008, Jake won the Melbourne Press Club Quill Awards' Best Sports Story in any medium for his profile piece on David Schwarz.
Jake Niall Some games are decided in the opening 15 or 20 minutes. Hawthorn's pre-season opener against the Lions was rendered a training drill when the teams were selected.
Jake Niall Hawthorn comes back from a seemingly hopeless position to beat the Cats for the first time since the 2008 AFL grand final and reach this year's decider.
Jake Niall In the preliminary final, the Hawks prevailed narrowly over the cursing Cats, despite the failure of their forward 'trinity' to produce goals.
Jake Niall When Lance Franklin finally tells Hawthorn his plans for next year, the shock will only come if he informs the club that he's staying.
Jake Niall In Nathan Buckley's first season, he was driving a car that had been assembled and successfully steered by Mick Malthouse.
Jake Niall Interchange rule that results in free and automatic 50-metre penalty criticised.
Jake Niall The late-season prodigal return of Alan Didak is set to continue with the forward set to hold his place in Collingwood's 22.
Jake Niall Geelong says injuries and the lack of conditioning for all recognised rucks could force it to play Mark Blicavs - the 198 centimetre convert from athletics who took up football last year after...
Jake Niall EXCLUSIVE Hawthorn's versatile forward/utility becomes latest Hawk to commit for the long-term.
Jake Niall Carlton's worst loss of 2013 came when it played three ruckmen/forwards against the straggling Saints in round seven.
Emma Quayle and Jake Niall Essendon's grip on the top-eight spot it has held all season becomes shakier.
Jake Niall On the ladder, Hawthorn and Collingwood were only one game apart. In reality, the distance was several goals.
Jake Niall Free agency could bring players to Essendon as the club looks to a brighter future.
Jake Niall Cyril Rioli was 'buggered' in the last quarter, when Alastair Clarkson made the game's most telling move, shifting the electric Cyril deeper into attack, where his jolts revived a flatlining team.
Jake Niall Lance Franklin was certainly Hawthorn's most potent player in the grand final.
Jake Niall Free agency is changing the AFL trading road map, it could be a difficult path for some.
Jake Niall Now the shoe's on the other foot and the Hawks are grand final losers, expect a robust response.
Jake Niall David Hille's suitors face a tough job prising him away from the Bombers, reports Jake Niall.