26/02/2024

The Inner Sanctum has selected a Team of the Week for Round 10 of the 2023 AFL season. (Photos: @StKildaFC, @PAFC @RichmondFC, Twitter) Design: Will Cuckson

The Inner Sanctum has put together a team of the week, comprised of the best-performing players from Round 10 of the 2023 AFL season.

The Inner Sanctum has put together a team of the week, comprised of the best-performing players from Round 10 of the 2023 AFL season.

Defenders are rewarded for defensive play, midfielders receive accolades for their dominance, while forwards are praised for hitting the scoreboard and applying pressure.

You can read last week’s team here.

The selected side for round 10 is…

Defenders

Coming into the game against Walyalup, superstar Geelong forward Jeremy Cameron had not been held goalless in 2023. However, Luke Ryan ensured that changed with a stellar showing at Optus Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Ryan also picked up 22 disposals at 90 per cent, seven rebound 50s, and six marks.

Darcy Moore put together one of the best individual performances of the 2023 season in the win over arch-rival Carlton on Sunday afternoon. Matched up on key forward Charlie Curnow, Moore did as he pleased, taking 10 intercept marks to go along with 25 disposals and eight rebound 50s.

Jordan Ridley kept Essendon in the contest against Richmond in the annual Dreamtime contest, with a damaging display across the defensive 50. Ridley found plenty of the footy, recording 32 disposals, 14 marks, and six rebound 50s.

Up against a potent Adelaide forward line, Bulldog Bailey Dale continued his strong run of form at Mars Stadium in Ballarat. Dale finished with 36 disposals at 88 per cent, nine marks, and nine score involvements.

Hawthorn captain James Sicily steered the side to its second victory of the 2023 season with a dominant display against the lowly Eagles. Sicily recorded 30 disposals, 11 marks, and seven inside 50s, as the Hawks cruised to victory.

In a tight contest with GWS to end the round, St. Kilda running defender Jack Sinclair proved to be the difference maker. Sinclair collected 37 disposals, eight marks, and booted two goals, as the Saints got season 2023 back on track.

Midfielders

Sean Darcy gave his midfielders first use in Saturday’s upset win over Geelong, with a dominant outing in the ruck. The Fremantle big man won 43 hitouts, and booted a goal, using his size to advantage.

Essendon skipper Zach Merrett put together one of the best captaincy performances of the 2023 season, as he claimed a maiden Yiooken Award. The Yiooken Award is awarded to the best player in the Dreamtime Clash, and Merrett left award winners no other choice. Merrett gathered 39 disposals, eight marks, and five clearances.

Up against the might of the Melbourne midfield, Yartapuulti needed its young brigade to stand up, and Zak Butters lead the way. The performance of the young gun was not only one of the best of the season but has also rocketed him into Brownlow medal contention. Butters picked up 41 disposals, 12 score involvements, nine clearances, and booted two majors.

Lachie Neale reminded the competition why he is a former Brownlow medalist with a strong performance in Saturday night’s Q Clash. Neale picked up 35 disposals, 10 clearances, and nine score involvements as Brisbane burst into the top two.

Bailey Smith was far too good for the Adelaide midfielders to handle with a strong performance in Ballarat on Saturday afternoon. Smith was electric, winning 37 disposals, along with seven tackles and six inside 50s.

It was a welcome return to form for All-Australian Bulldog Jack Macrae on Saturday against Adelaide at Mars Stadium. The midfielder reminded the competition how easily he can win the ball, and how damaging he can be with a strong outing. Macrae picked up 26 disposals at 88 per cent, seven tackles, and booted two majors.

Forwards

Shai Bolton lit up the MCG in the Dreamtime at the ‘G contest with a game-breaking showing against Essendon. Although it wasn’t enough to see the Tigers over the line, Bolton still recorded 28 disposals, seven tackles, seven inside 50s, and two goals.

Facing off against the undermanned West Coast, Mitch Lewis gave Hawthorn fans a glimpse of the future with a dominant showing in attack. Lewis booted a career-high six majors to go along with 24 disposals and eight marks.

Josh Dunkley continued his strong run of form and continues to show why he was one of the most talked about names in the recent off-season period. In Saturday night’s Q Clash, Dunkley recorded 29 disposals, 11 score involvements, eight tackles, and seven clearances.

Max King showed the St. Kilda forward line exactly what it had been missing with a positive display in attack. The key forward was too much for the Giants’ backline to handle, kicking four majors along with eight marks.

Joe Daniher rocketed his way up to equal fourth in the Coleman Medal race, with a game-changing showing in Saturday night’s Q Clash victory over Gold Coast. Daniher booted four goals along with 16 disposals and eight marks.

Collingwood forward Brody Mihocek caused plenty of headaches all afternoon long for the Carlton backline in Sunday afternoon’s victory. Mihocek booted four goals as the Magpies ensured it remained on top of the AFL ladder.

Interchange

In what was a tight contest with North Melbourne all afternoon, Luke Parker proved critical to Sydney winning the game and pulling off the great escape. Parker picked up 28 disposals, nine score involvements, six clearances, and booted a goal.

It has been a welcome return to form for Walyalup midfielder Andrew Brayshaw, and Saturday’s upset win over Geelong was no exception. The Dockers superstar finished with 33 disposals, 10 tackles, eight score involvements, and booted a goal.

North Melbourne son of a gun Bailey Scott put together what was arguably the best performance of his career on Saturday afternoon against Sydney. Scott gathered 33 disposals, 12 inside 50s, and booted a goal.

In difficult conditions, Dan Houston stood strong for Yartapuulti in its big win over Narrm on Friday night at Adelaide Oval. The running defender accumulated plenty of the footy, with 33 disposals, seven inside 50s, and five rebound 50s.

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