Jake Niall

Jake Niall

Jake Niall is a senior sports writer at 'The Age' specialising mainly in coverage of the AFL. He writes a weekly column for 'The Sunday Age' and has been on staff with 'The Age' or 'Sunday Age' since 1995. Jake, who combines original news with commentary, match-based writing, features and analysis, has won a number of awards, including the Alf Brown award for the best performer in AFL media in 2012, the Melbourne Press Club's 2007 Quill award for best sports story in any medium and a Walkley award, shared with colleagues Richard Baker, Nick McKenzie, Caroline Wilson and John Silvester, for best coverage of a major issue (Essendon scandal) in 2013.

AFL

Tom Hawkins the big difference - again

Jake Niall No key forward in the game has exerted as much influence on results this season as Tom Hawkins.

Jekyll-and-Hyde Roos prove finals real deal

Thus far and no further: North Melbourne's Todd Goldstein gets a good grip on Geelong's Mark Blicavs and prevents him from disposing of the ball.

Jake Niall North Melbourne was derided for its inconsistency this year and was widely viewed as a team that alternated, like the girl with the curl, between very good and horrid.

Comments 2

Selwood challenges decorated teammates to improve

Their season at an end, Geelong players trudge off the ground on Friday night.

Jake Niall Geelong captain Joel Selwood has challenged the club's decorated veterans, as much as the youngsters, to improve and take the club beyond the second week of the finals.

St Kilda's desperate call from the war room

Jake Niall

Jake Niall Every week, a group of St Kilda officials gather in a window-less room in the football department which has become known to all as "The War Room". 

Tight win over Geelong not good enough for finals: Clarkson

Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson.

Jake Niall Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson says his team will have to improve to go far in the finals.

Father-son drafting shake-up in the wings

Darcy Moore is a highly-rated prospect who would be affected by any rule change.

Jake Niall The AFL is looking at overhauling the father-son draft rules.

AFL

Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley blunders on Maxwell, Keeffe

Jake Niall dinkus

Jake Niall Nathan Buckley has rightly put his players on notice for what was probably the low water mark for Collingwood since he succeeded Mick Malthouse.

AFL

Brian Lake ready to play for Hawks, Ryan Schoenmakers also

Back in action: Brian Lake.

Jake Niall Hawthorn appears poised to regain Brian Lake, the player it missed so badly against Geelong, and will consider selecting another tall back, Ryan Schoenmakers, for Sunday's clash with Richmond.

AFL

Riewoldt, Pavlich, Brown – take your pick

Jake Niall dinkus

Jake Niall Nick Riewoldt, Matthew Pavlich and Jonathan Brown are still stars for their respective clubs, but which has had the better AFL career?

Comments 9

AFL

Carlton coach Mick Malthouse blasts umpiring non-calls

Mick Malthouse

Jake Niall Carlton coach Mick Malthouse has questioned three umpiring decisions - including a last minute incident involving Geelong runner Nigel Lappin and Mitch Robinson - in the wake of Carlton's unlucky...

AFL

Geelong lucky to get past Carlton after a hard slog

Geelong's Steven Motlop prevents Kade Simpson and Sam Rowe getting to the ball.

Jake Niall In one of the better matches of 2014, Joel Selwood managed to break from a stoppage with barely a minute left and convert a long angle shot to snatch the lead - and the result - for a Geelong side...

AFL

Why the Cats won't win the flag

Geelong players contemplate their heavy loss to Sydney

Jake Niall Geelong ''could'' win the 2014 premiership, in the same way that Carlton ''could'' make the final eight. It's highly improbable, rather than impossible.

AFL

Sydney's stealth tactics are no longer new

Jake Niall dinkus

Jake Niall The Swans' days of creeping up on the competition to snare flags and star players are over.

AFL

Richmond a good fit for Frawley

Jake Niall No sooner had James Frawley's management confirmed that he had put contract talks with the Demons on hold to ascertain ''the direction of the club,'' rival clubs and others within the AFL realm began...

AFL

Top four is easy to predict except for one

Jake Niall Sydney, Hawthorn and Fremantle are everyone's box trifecta but the fourth estate is having great difficulty in ranking the fourth team of 2014.

Comments 25

AFL

Hawthorn revival almost too late

hawks

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.

AFL

Fleet of foot prevails over big birds

Crows defender Ben Rutten looks on as Hawk Cyril Rioli celebrates.

Jake Niall The Hawks didn’t choke. Adelaide choked them.

Football

Crucial move makes Rioli a trump card

Celebration: Cyril Rioli slots another goal.

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.

AFL

Lake, West in doubt for blockbuster

Brian Lake and Alastair Clarkson

Jake Niall Hawthorn undecided on picking prize recruit Brian Lake for game against Geelong.

Catch-up Blues fall shy

At a stretch: Geelong forward Paul Chapman (left) and Carlton midfielder Bryce Gibbs battle for the ball during the Cats' victory.

Jake Niall Carlton fights hard, but it is Geelong that emerges with the points.