goldcoastfc.com.au, in conjunction with AFL Fantasy expert Adam ‘Warnie’ Child of The Traders, review some the Gold Coast SUNS’ top Fantasy scorers across the 2017 pre-season and their prospects for your Fantasy side this season.
Michael Barlow (MID, $583,000)
286 points, 3 games (average: 95.33)
The former Docker was the SUNS’ top scorer in AFL Fantasy Points across the pre-season, cracking the ton on two occasions against Essendon (104) and the Western Bulldogs (109) across a steady campaign.
Barlow is loved by many in the Fantasy community after averaging 109.8 as a mature-aged rookie in 2010. He hasn’t dropped below an average of 93 in his last five seasons and given he will play an important midfield role for his new side, expect his consistent numbers to continue in 2017.
Warnie’s Verdict: LOCK – Hopefully with a more consistent role, we could see him average more than 105 which he has done in three of his seven seasons.
Touk Miller (FWD/MID, $493,000)
252 points, 3 games (average: 84)
After switching into Gold Coast’s midfield late in 2016, Miller was a Fantasy revelation, averaging 104 points across the last eight games of the season.
The former Vic Metro captain averaged 84 across the JLT Series but with the increased midfield depth at Metricon Stadium, the 21-year-old may spend more time in the forward line, which could ultimately impact his scores.
Warnie’s Verdict: CONSIDER – The way Touk finished last year, he should be a lock. Wait on early games and pounce on a potentially under-priced MID/FWD if he is playing through the midfield.
Aaron Hall (MID, $635,000)
248 points, 2 games (average: 124)
With scores of 127 and 121, Hall held the highest average of any AFL player across the JLT Series. He cracked the ton 11 times in 2016 from his 17 games, with a highest score of 151.
The Tasmanian is an accumulator of the footy and should continue to rack up big Fantasy scores in 2017.
Warnie’s Verdict: LOCK – His pre-season demonstrated that he has a natural Fantasy game and this is the year we should see the ball-magnet play all 22 games.
Pearce Hanley (MID, $506,000)
216 points, 3 games (average: 72)
Hanley arrived on the Gold Coast with a new lease on life after a challenging 2016 campaign at Brisbane and looks set to be an integral part of the SUNS’ new-look midfield.
With scores of 76, 66 and 74 across the JLT Series, the Irishman was consistent from a Fantasy perspective without setting the world on fire.
Warnie’s Verdict: AVOID – Hanley may perform better than his price suggests, but with just eight Fantasy tons to his name in the last two seasons, there are better options out there.
David Swallow (MID, $355,000)
192 points, 3 games (average: 64)
Swallow is at a cheap price after limited playing time over the past two years due to ongoing PCL issues. His scores went up with his playing time, going from 54 in his opening outing to 77 in his final game where he played 75.8% of the game.
With the 2014 Club Champion primed for round one, you’d be silly not to consider including the West Australian in your lineup.
Warnie’s Verdict: LOCK – Receiving a hefty price discount after missing last season, there aren’t too many players who offer the same value as Swallow.
Alex Sexton (MID, $384,000)
185 points, 2 games (average: 92.5)
In his first game of the JLT Series against Essendon, Sexton had a team-high 110 AFL Fantasy points after a complete performance that had coach Rodney Eade describing him as ‘quite vital to us’ due to his flexibility and running ability.
Although the 23-year-old is one of the first picked each week, Sexton’s role across the season will vary from playing as a midfielder/wingman to run-with roles, which may impact the consistency of his Fantasy scores.
Warnie’s Verdict: AVOID – His impressive pre-season numbers won’t transfer to the real thing when the ball is bounced in round one.
Tom Lynch (FWD, $520,000)
145 points, 2 games (average: 72.5)
The All Australian forward averaged 86 Fantasy points per game last season and looks set to take his game up another notch in 2017, with his six-goal outing against the Western Bulldogs in JLT3 a sign of what could be to come from the SUNS captain.
Warnie’s Verdict: CONSIDER – Should be among the top forwards come season end. Take him before the other Tom Lynch in your Draft league.
Kade Kolodjashnij (DEF, $437,000)
188 points, 3 games (average: 62.66)
After a Fantasy average of 84 in just his second season, coaches had high hopes for Kolodjashnij to build even further on that in 2016. However, the Tasmanian was struck down twice by mystery abdomen issues and could only muster 72 points per game last season.
30 disposals across half back in JLT3 highlighted the important role Kolodjashnij will play for the SUNS this season and you’d back him to improve his scores in 2017.
Warnie’s Verdict: CONSIDER – Cheap following a down season in 2016, KK loves a +6 (mark and kick) and will be a Fantasy stud for the next decade.
Gary Ablett (MID, $611,000)
84 points, 1 game (average: 84)
The Little Master is one of the all-time Fantasy greats. He’s averaged over 100 in eight of his last nine seasons, the only blemish being his injury-plagued 2015 where he managed just six games (and still averaged 95, including a score of 176).
While he spent the final JLT game alternating between the midfield and up forward, expect Ablett to spend more time in the engine room and around the contest as he builds his match fitness.
Warnie’s Verdict: LOCK – Can you ever go wrong starting with Gaz? No! If he plays mostly midfield, he scores tons week in, week out. If he plays up forward, then we have our No. 1 dual position player when positional adjustments occur in round six, 12 and 18.
Jarrod Witts (RUC, $328,000)
101 points, 2 games (average: 50.5)
After an impressive final game in the JLT Series (69 AFL Fantasy points), Witts has stamped his name on the ruck role for the SUNS’ round one clash against Brisbane.
While the former Magpie is unlikely to generate massive scores week-in, week-out, he provides value at the Ruck position.
Warnie’s Verdict: CONSIDER – Going with one cheaper ruck can let your splurge elsewhere. Witts could make some quick cash if he’s the No. 1 ruckman.