Wallis impresses with 47-touch TAC Cup GF
Article courtesy of www.afl.com.au
THE WESTERN Bulldogs’ recruiting staff will be rubbing their hands together with delight after father-son target Mitch Wallis was awarded the best-on-ground medal in Sunday’s TAC Cup Grand Final.
Wallis, the son of Bulldog great Steve Wallis, collected an extraordinary 47 possessions as the Calder Cannons thrashed Gippsland Power by 58 points to win their sixth premiership in 10 years.
The 17-year-old inside midfielder is almost certain to join the Dogs in November’s national draft as a father-son selection.
But other clubs can bid for Wallis, meaning the Bulldogs will probably have to use their first-round draft pick to acquire him.
“It’s not concrete yet, but it looks that way,” Wallis said after his dominant performance for the Cannons.
“I can’t wait. I’m still a bit nervous about what could happen leading up to the draft, but I think I’ve got a lot to look forward to.”
Another potential Bulldogs recruit, Tom Liberatore, who is the son of 1990 Brownlow Medallist Tony Liberatore, also produced an impressive showing for the Cannons in their big win at Etihad Stadium.
He spent most of the game in the midfield and picked up 28 possessions.
“If Libba gets drafted by the Bulldogs as well it’d be a bonus,” Wallis added.
“I can’t wait to find out because I’ve been playing with him my all my life. If I can continue to do so it would be so good.”
Wallis has now set his sights on winning a place in the Bulldogs’ team for round one of the 2011 season, something many people believe is within his reach.
“Obviously I haven’t done a full pre-season yet at an AFL club, so it depends on how my body holds up,” he said.
“It’s my aim to play senior footy next year, but everything has to fall into place.”
The likely top-10 draft pick who shone for Gippsland Power was their captain Dyson Heppell.
The Morrish Medallist, who rotated between the backline and midfield, collected 20 touches.