A whirlwind few weeks for Jai Newcombe continues this week, with the young Hawk set to take flight on Friday night.
He will be the sixth player to debut for Hawthorn in 2021 when he runs out on the field against Sydney.
Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson spoke about Newcombe’s body of work at Box Hill that has seen him earn his debut.
“He’s played some great footy for us at Box Hill throughout the first half of the season,” Clarkson said to media on Thursday.
It’s Newcombe’s strong body of work at Box Hill that made the young Hawk set to take flight.
Clarkson went into detail about his selection in last Wednesday’s mid-season draft, alongside Jackson Callow.
“We selected both those guys on the basis that they might be able to play in the second half of the year,” he said.
“Jackson obviously did the pre-season with us and Jai’s right under our nose, playing for Box Hill.
“We didn’t know which of those guys would be available at pick 2 and which would be available at pick 15 or what position it was.
“So, we ended up going with Jai at 2. And we were lucky we were able to get both the players that we were keen to get.
“Jai’s making his debut this week, we’d be hopeful that Jackson gets his opportunity in the second half of the year.”
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Newcombe is just one of the potential players of the future at Hawthorn, with plenty of youngsters now taking to the field for the Hawks.
Clarkson spoke about how invested he is in their futures at the club, with specific reference to Newcombe.
“The players that we’ve got here, I’m invested in,” he said.
“Including young Jai Newcombe.
“We’re invested in young kids at the club.”
Clarkson made specific reference to Friday night rivals the Swans when discussing the youth undertakings at Hawthorn.
“I don’t think there was a footy critic in the land that had Sydney in the 8 this year.
“I think the footy world was surprised at how quickly they (the young kids at Sydney) were able to do it (compete).
“That’s the excitement for Hawthorn and other clubs is that it can happen very quickly if you get all your ducks in a row.
“That’s the process we’re going through, we’re debuting players and giving them the opportunity to p
“With some sort of luck, our process happens a bit quicker than others.
“And Sydney have done it very well over the last 12 months.”
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