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2016 National Draft Recap

The Gold Coast SUNS have added five new players to the club’s list at Friday night’s National Draft in Sydney, acquiring dynamic small forward Ben Ainsworth, mobile defender Jack Scrimshaw, competitive animal Will Brodie, silky midfielder Jack Bowes and contested ball beast Brad Scheer.

“We’re really happy. Very excited and it just went to plan so that’s always something to be proud of,” - GC SUNS List & Strategy Manager, Scott Clayton.

Pick No. 4 - Ben Ainsworth (Gippsland Power)

The Gold Coast SUNS have secured exciting small forward/midfielder Ben Ainsworth with selection No. 4 at the 2016 NAB AFL Draft at Sydney’s Hordern Pavilion on Friday night.

In the lead-up to the draft, Ainsworth was widely tipped to be snapped up in the top three but when he slipped to the fourth pick, recruiting guru Scott Clayton was more than happy to pounce and bring the Gippsland Power captain to the SUNS.

Ainsworth is a brilliant overhead mark for his size and will bring a real X-Factor to Metricon Stadium, providing a threat both in the air and at ground level and the ability to be a match-winning player. In his final four games for the Power, Ainsworth averaged 29 disposals and kicked 12 goals.

He was named in the Under 18 All Australian team in 2015 as a bottom-ager and finished second in the 20-metre sprint at this year’s Draft Combine (2.90 seconds). Ainsworth also finished fifth in the repeat sprints (25.01 seconds) and in the top 10 in the agility and right foot running vertical jump.

Pick No. 7 - Jack Scrimshaw (Sandringham Dragons)

Gold Coast has selected utility Jack Scrimshaw with pick No. 7 in Friday night’s NAB AFL National Draft.

The talented left footer starred as a rebounding defender for both Vic Metro and TAC Cup side Sandringham in 2016, averaging 23.7 disposals per game for the Dragons. Sandringham looked to place the ball in Scrimshaw’s hands at every opportunity with his agility, decision-making and clean hands making him a perfect quarterback for his side.

At a height of 193cm, Scrimshaw has the potential to develop into a modern-day midfielder in the Ilk of a Marcus Bontempelli.

Pick No. 9 - Will Brodie (Murray Bushrangers)

The Gold Coast SUNS have selected inside midfielder Will Brodie with pick No. 9 in the 2016 National Draft.

The 188cm Murray Bushranger is a clearance machine with an insatiable thirst for getting his hands dirty and winning the contested footy.

A member of the NAB AFL Academy, Brodie demonstrated his ability to play opposed to bigger bodies against VFL sides Werribee and Geelong in April. He was awarded the MCC President’s Medal as the Academy’s best player against Werribee with 20 disposals and seven inside 50s and followed up with 22 touches the following week off half-back.

At this year’s NAB AFL Under-18 Championships, despite Vic Country not winning a game, Brodie averaged 21 disposals (10 contested) and 5.3 clearances per game and earned Under 18 All Australian honours for his efforts.

Pick No. 10 - Jack Bowes (Gold Coast SUNS Academy)

Gold Coast Academy product Jack Bowes is officially a SUNS player after being selected with pick No. 10 in Friday’s 2016 National Draft.

The Sydney Swans placed a bid for Bowes with their first selection on the night, which SUNS List Manager Scott Clayton had no hesitation in matching.

Nicknamed the ‘Rolls-Royce’ of this year’s draft crop, the silky midfielder is known for his agility, composure and decision-making ability.

The Cairns product was awarded the Harrison Medal as the best player in this year’s division two Under 18 championships, averaging 25 disposals (14.3 contested) per game, booting seven goals in three games. He was awarded a midfield berth in the 2016 Under 18 All Australian team after backing up for the Allies in Div 1.

Bowes also played seven games for the SUNS’ NEAFL side in 2016, averaging 18.7 disposals and over a goal per game including team-highs in disposals (31), clearances (eight) and inside 50s (eight) in the inexperienced team’s Elimination Final loss to Sydney University.

Pick No. 67 - Brad Scheer (Palm Beach-Currumbin)


Palm Beach-Currumbin product Brad Scheer became the second local Academy player drafted by the Gold Coast in the 2016 NAB AFL National Draft after Geelong's bid at pick No.67 was matched by the SUNS recruiting team.

Scheer is a solidly built inside midfielder with a thirst for winning the contested footy but can also shift forward and impact the scoreboard.

In the division two Under 18 championships earlier this year, he averaged 25 disposals, six tackles and six clearances in three games for Queensland.

The 18-year-old also picked up a NEAFL Rising Star nomination after collecting 27 disposals and eight inside 50s in his first game of the season for the SUNS reserves. Scheer went on to play seven games for Steve Daniel’s side in 2016, kicking four goals.