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RECRUITS

Jack Leslie

Recruited from: Gold Coast Suns

(Photo: neafl.com.au)

 

Williamstown Football Club is excited to announce the signing of former Gold Coast Suns player Jack Leslie for the next two seasons.  

 

Leslie, a key defender, played 28 games for the Suns having been drafted in the 2013 NAB AFL National Draft from the Gippsland Power.  

 

At just 25 years of age and with several seasons in the AFL system, Leslie will bring leadership and experience to the Seagulls back half.  

 

“To have Jack come in alongside Joel Tippett down back gives great strength, leadership and experience in the back half next season,” GM-Football Stephen Soulsby said.

 

“His ability to intercept mark and ability to play one-on-one is something we are looking forward to and he is a fantastic person to have at our club.” 

 

 

Daniel Mott

Recruited from: Calder Cannons

(Photo by Mike Owen/AFL Photos)

 

Williamstown Football Club is excited to announce the signing of Calder Cannons co-captain Daniel Mott.  

 

Mott led the midfield at the Cannons, hitting form at the right time of the season, playing at his best in the Under 18 National Championships whilst averaging 23 disposals and four tackles in the NAB League gaining a National Combine invite.  

 

“Daniel is a very clean user of the ball as an inside mid but also has the ability to go outside as well,” GM-Football Stephen Soulsby said. 

 

“He is a great young man with some real footy smarts and we look forward to seeing him now at VFL level as he continues to develop his footy.”

 

Lachie Stapleton / Mitch Mellis / Charlie Dean

Recruited from: Eastern Ranges / Eastern Ranges / Sandringham Dragons

   

(Photos: Graham Denholm/AFL Photos/Getty Images / nableague.com.au / Daniel Pockett/AFL Photos) 

Williamstown Football Club is excited to announce the signing of NAB League trio Lachie Stapleton, Mitch Mellis and Charlie Dean for the 2020 season. 

Stapleton and Mellis both come via the Eastern Ranges whilst Dean comes via the Sandringham Dragons, with all three featuring for Vic Metro in the Under 18 National Championships this year.  

Stapleton was one of the NAB League’s most prolific tacklers - averaging 7.1 per game this year - providing plenty of pressure in close and has lightning quick hands. An invite to the State Combine saw him test a 2.97-second 20-metre sprint showing he has speed to burn. He can play on the inside and out. 

Mellis was one of the most consistent players in the NAB League averaging 25 disposals playing on the wing/half forward. He won the Eastern Ranges best and fairest as a bottom age player in 2018 and finished runner-up in 2019, confirming his consistency over the past two seasons.  

Dean is an emerging tall that has had exposure at both ends of the ground building his versatility to play either as a key forward or defender.  

Dean kicked 17 goals from his 10 games at NAB League level in 2019 and will be looking to continue his development with the likes of Joel Ottavi and Joel Tippett.  

“Having Lachie, Mitch and Charlie come on board is really exciting for us as a Club given their individual efforts at NAB League level over the past two seasons,” GM-Football Stephen Soulsby said. 

“All three give us varying options across the ground we can’t wait to see them at VFL level next season.” 

Kieren Parnell

Recruited from: NT Thunder (NEAFL) 

(Photo: Sharon Vella/NEAFL)

Williamstown Football Club is excited to announce the signing of one NT’s rising stars Kieren Parnell.  

 

A classy medium defender/midfielder, Parnell can play in various roles having played every game in 2019 with NT Thunder in the NEAFL and is currently continuing his footy with NT powerhouse St. Mary’s in NTFL before relocating to Melbourne in January.  

 

A strong NEAFL season saw him rewarded with a NEAFL Rising Star nomination in Round 12 along with an invitation to October’s AFL State Combine held in Melbourne.  

 

Parnell has also played underage footy at SANFL level having boarded in Adelaide for his final two years of schooling.  

 

“Kieren is an exciting prospect out of NT and will be looking to build off his last 12 months at NEAFL level,” GM-Football Stephen Soulsby said.

 

“His athleticism and ability to play across half back/wing as either a tall or small shows his versatility to play various roles and coming into the VFL system should greatly develop his footy.

 

“His partner is already down here in Melbourne which, having lived away from home previously, will allow his transition to be a lot smoother when he relocates in the new year.” 

 

 

Sam Murray / Nick Murray 

Recruited from: Collingwood (AFL) / GWS Academy 

 

(Photos: herladsun.com.au/Michael Klein / neafl.com.au)

Williamstown Football Club is excited to announce the signing of former Collingwood and Sydney player Sam Murray along with his younger brother Nick for the 2020 season.   

Sam is a hard-running half-back flanker who played 13 matches for the Magpies in 2018 after featuring on the Swans’ rookie list for the two seasons prior.     

The 22-year-old speedster was nominated for the NAB AFL Rising Star award after collecting 21 touches, seven marks and four tackles against Carlton in a breakout Round 3 performance in 2018 and will add plenty of run and carry to the Seagulls defensive unit.   

Nick, 18, is an impressive tall key utility who can play at either end and plays with great courage and aerial aggression.   

The former Murray Bushranger from Henty played five matches for the Giants Academy averaging 15 touches and 6.2 marks per game. He played a further eight games in the NEAFL with the Giants in 2019.  

Nick also represented the Allies this year.   

“Sam will bring great run out of defence and is looking forward to playing at VFL level,” Williamstown GM-Football Stephen Soulsby said. 

“He’s a daring, courageous defender in a similar nature to Brayden Monk, which has us really excited about our defensive side of our game.     

“Nick is continuing to develop as a key tall and he can play at either end,” Soulsby added.

“He will greatly benefit by coming into the VFL system having spent the last three seasons as part of the Giants Academy and the NAB League. 

“To have the support of his brother both on and off-field will also be of great benefit and both are really excited to play at the same club in 2020.” 

James Tsitas

Recruited from: Geelong (VFL)

 

(Photo: Geelong Cats)

Williamstown is thrilled to announce the signing of former Geelong VFL co-captain and best and fairest winner James Tsitas.

A tough midfielder, Tsitas brings a wealth of experience to the club as he enters his seventh year of VFL footy.

Andrew Collins said: “Jimmy and I have got great history. In 2014 there (were) five boys that didn’t get drafted and they were all ranked incredibly highly – Michael Gibbons was probably ranked number one, James Tsitas two, Ben Cavarra three, Jake Greiser and Brett Bewley. James knows that I’ve been trying to recruit him every year for the last five years and I think he just gave in to my persistence! He brings strong leadership to our football club, he’s an incredible midfielder and any given Sunday he should be on an AFL list. I’m really excited about coaching him.”

Corey Rich

Recruited from: Frankston (VFL)

 

(Photo: Graham Denholm/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Corey Rich arrives at the club having played for both Sandringham and Frankston. The mobile goalkicker played 18 matches for the Dolphins in 2019 and booted 24 goals - hitting the scoreboard in each game he played bar three.

Andrew Collins said: “He was our first signing and he’s a boy that I was very interested in for a couple of years. (A) former Sandringham development player, (he) really burst onto the scene, and unfortunately through the alignment didn’t get a lot of opportunity and chose to go to the Frankston Football Club in which he’s really thrived in that environment. At the same time, he’s a boy that I believe we can improve his football in a positive direction. He’s a terrific person - a goalkicker – and should replace Sam Dunell in a similar type of role.”

Luke Meadows

Recruited from: Box Hill (VFL)

 

(Photo: Getty Images/Michael Dodge)

The Seagulls have secured the signature of gun mid Luke Meadows. Finishing top 10 in the WAFL's Sandover Medal in 2018, Meadows joined the Hawks' leadership group this season and averaged 21.3 touches and 4.8 tackles per game. 

Andrew Collins said: “Luke has been 12 months as a project. His best mate is from Western Australia and it’s a big powerful forward that we have in Nick Rodda. Nick recommended his best mate in Luke, we weren’t able to (originally) convince him to come across to Williamstown, he spent 12 months at Box Hill, played outstanding footy – had an outstanding game against Williamstown last year – and (he’s) a wonderful person, great leader of men, was part of the leadership group at Box Hill and that’s something that we’re really excited about bringing him into our footy club.” 

Tristan Davies

Recruited from: Sydney University (NEAFL)

 

(Photo: Keith McInnes/NEAFL)

Tristan Davies returns to Williamstown after moving to Sydney University to study. The high-flying Davies made a name for himself up forward in the NEAFL and will be a handy addition at Downer Oval. 

Andrew Collins said: “There used to be a movie … called ‘White Men Can’t Jump’, Tristan actually says that white men can jump! He jumps very high, probably took the mark of the year at any level of football last year for Sydney University. He was really fortunate to get into a physiotherapy degree in Sydney which left him departing our football club a few years ago. Really excited to see him come back to our footy club and he’ll be a terrific talent in our forward line.”  

Paul Hunter

Recruited from: Adelaide Crows (AFL)

  

(Photo: afc.com.au)

Paul Hunter, a 200cm, 104kg ruckman, was named the NEAFL Rising Star in 2014. The big-bodied ruck has showed several signs in the SANFL that he can kick goals and dominate his centre bounce opponents. 

Andrew Collins said: “I’m really excited to get Paul. The year that he was drafted from the Redlands Football Club in Queensland, we were very interested in Paul ourselves. He’s been living with a great friend of mine and former young player that I coached at West Adelaide by the name of Jonathon Beech. When Paul was delisted by the Adelaide Crows, not only were we keen, but also Jonathon Beech recommended him highly. We’re really excited to welcome Paul into our footy club. It’s a new time for us in the change of big men, Paul will bring different elements to us as a big, versatile (and) athletic ruckman. Paul is going to be a terrific player for us.”  

Thomas Edwards-Baldwin

Recruited from: Subiaco (WAFL)

 

(Photo: Les Everett/australianrules.com.au)

Edwards-Baldwin debuted for Subiaco in 2018 after success in the Subiaco Colts program. The tackling machine was a part of Subiaco's 96-point premiership-winning team in this year's WAFL grand final. 

Andrew Collins said: “He’s been highly recommended to me by former player Peter Faulks through a few degrees of separation. He’s already played in a state league grand final. (He's) incredibly explosive (and) comes with a soccer background as well so his athleticism is a real strength of his and we welcome him to our footy club. He’ll be exciting at either end of the field. He’s only 20 years of age, a tackling machine, and this is one to watch.”

 

RE-SIGNINGS

 

Adam Marcon, Nick Rodda, Jake Greiser, Nick Sing, Liam Hunt, Brayden Monk, Nick Ebinger, Joel Ottavi, Billy Myers, Jaylon Thorpe, Nick Mellington, Darby Henderson, Sam McLarty, Lachie Bramble, Bailey Morrish, Kal Dawson, Nick Buykx, Sam Martyn, Jesse Tardio, Cooper Stephens, Tom Mundy, Joel Tippett. 

 

DEPARTURES

 

Sam Dunell (Old Melburnians/local), Nick Meese (Aberfeldie/local), Leigh Masters (Yarrawonga/local), Willie Wheeler (Yarrawonga/local), Oliver Tate (Cheltenham/local), Ben Kennedy (Montmorency/local). Jack Charleston. 

 

Our exciting list is starting to take shape with more new recruits on the horizon! Click HERE to purchase a membership as we aim to go one step further in 2020.   

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