16/04/2024

The Inner Sanctum has selected a Team of the Week for Round Two of the 2023 AFL season. Photos: Collingwood Magpies/Twitter, Melbourne Demons/Twitter, Geelong Cats/Twitter

The Inner Sanctum has put together a team of the week, comprised of the best performing players from Round 2 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 two is…

The Inner Sanctum’s Team of the Week for Round 2. (Design: Will Cuckson)

Defenders

After a relatively quiet start to season 2023 against Fremantle in round one, All-Australian Jack Sinclair returned to his best on Saturday night against the Western Bulldogs. The running defender collected 33 disposals at 87 per cent, along with six score involvements and 534 metres gained.

Against a potent Adelaide forward line away from home, Noah Balta was a force for Richmond all afternoon. In what was an entertaining battle with Crows star Taylor Walker, Balta recorded 10 marks and 11 intercept possessions.

Carlton speedster Adam Saad was back to his best for the Blues on Thursday night against Geelong. Saad picked up 29 disposals, seven marks, and 608 metres gained, constantly repelling out of the backline all night long.

In what was just his second game at AFL level, Harry Sheezel was strong yet again for the Kangaroos in the shock win over Fremantle. Sheezel was everywhere, winning 30 disposals, eight marks, and nine rebound 50s.

Superstar Collingwood defender Darcy Moore has slotted into his new role as Collingwood captain with ease, and Saturday afternoon was no exception. Moore collected 15 disposals at 86 per cent, along with eight marks and seven rebound 50s.

The 2022 rising star winner Nick Daicos showed the footy world just how good he is, with a stellar performance against Port Adelaide. Daicos produced 32 disposals, 11 score involvements and booted two goals. Daicos’ performance rocketed him to the Brownlow medal favourite upon completion of the opening two rounds.

Midfielders

In an afternoon that was filled with several strong performances from the Collingwood side, Darcy Cameron was another who was given his deserved plaudits. Cameron gave his midfielders first use with 29 hitouts, 18 disposals, and nine score involvements.

Despite a narrow loss to Brisbane in a controversial game at the Gabba on Friday night, Clayton Oliver reminded the football world that he is one of the best midfielders the competition has to offer. Oliver won 37 disposals, 11 inside 50s, nine tackles, as well as booting a goal.

Luke Davies-Uniacke was a force to be reckoned with in North Melbourne’s upset win on Saturday night against Fremantle. The midfielder affectionately known as ‘LDU’ accumulated 30 disposals at 83 per cent, 11 clearances, and booted a late goal which ultimately proved to be the match-winner.

In what was a remarkably heroic effort, St Kilda captain Jack Steele played through the pain of a broken collarbone on his way to 29 disposals, seven inside 50s, six tackles, and a goal.

In his first game of the 2023 season, having missed Brisbane’s disappointing round one defeat against Port Adelaide, Dayne Zorko provided the spark the Lions needed. The former skipper provided Brisbane with the ammunition it needed, with a game-breaking 22 disposals at 90 per cent, eight inside 50s, and two majors.

Although Josh Daicos does not often receive the praise that his brother Nick does, his performance on Saturday afternoon at the MCG was fantastic. Daicos generated run all afternoon with 26 disposals, 574 metres gained, and two majors.

Forwards

With a number of injuries to its forward stocks, Essendon needed someone to prove the difference up forward, and Kyle Langford did just that. Langford booted a career-best five goals to partner his 14 disposals and nine score involvements in what was an impressive showing.

Geelong superstar Jeremy Cameron showed why he is arguably the competition’s most valuable player with an incredible display against Carlton at the MCG on Thursday night. In what was a showing of pure individual brilliance, Cameron amassed 25 disposals, eight marks, six goals, and 11 score involvements.

Greater Western Sydney captain Toby Greene made the most of his limited opportunities in Sunday evening’s loss to West Coast at Optus Stadium. The star small forward racked up 18 disposals, and made an impact on the scoreboard with 10 score involvements and four majors.

Key forward Nick Larkey backed up his six-goal haul in round one with a four-goal showing in the win over Fremantle on Saturday night. The Kangaroos star has also rocketed to the top of the Coleman medal standings after two rounds.

Charlie Curnow gave the Geelong defenders a significant headache on Thursday night, booting five goals, to go along with nine marks and nine score involvements.

In what was a breakout game against Hawthorn on Sunday afternoon, former pick number four Logan McDonald kicked five majors.

Interchange

Joel Amartey ensured that the loss of Lance Franklin did not impact the forward setup of Sydney, kicking four goals to partner his nine marks and eight score involvements.

Jake Waterman gave West Coast fans a glimpse into life after Jack Darling with 16 disposals and four goals, as West Coast recorded its first win of the 2023 season.

Former Carlton midfielder Will Setterfield has eased into life at Essendon, and it was showcased with a strong outing on Sunday afternoon against Gold Coast at Marvel Stadium. Setterfield accumulated 28 disposals, 11 score involvements, 10 inside 50s, and nine tackles.

Will Ashcroft was awarded the Rising Star nomination for round two, on the back of a stellar showing against Melbourne on Friday night. The number two draft pick who came with major wraps amassed 31 disposals, nine clearances and a goal.

Subscribe to our newsletter!

About Author