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AFL Unsung Heroes, Monday 18th July

A 'deadly' feel to the unsung heroes and an old head teaching young blokes how to do the business all feature on the unsung heroes for Round 18.

A ‘deadly’ performance in Darwin led to a groundswell of support, while the red and white of ‘The Bloods’ feature heavily in the Round 18 edition of Unsung Heroes.

Unsung hero #1

Fans of Kozzy Pickett

There is something magical about how the indigenous athleticism, culture and spirit intertwines with the game of Aussie Rules. 

It was on show none more so than when Kysaiah Pickett slammed home six goals in a critical win for the Demons up in Darwin. 

The post-game celebrations were one to savour as a handful of indigenous fans, young and old for that matter, lined up and got their photos with Pickett after his match-winning performance. 

Melbourne’s social media did it justice by posting up footage of the fan fare which ensued. 

Have a watch of it here! 

Unsung hero #2

John Longmire

He would have to be the best developer of youth in the AFL system.

John Longmire’s ability to turn his young troopers into battle-hardened players has not got enough credit this season. 

Sydney was only down out of the eight for two years through 2019 and 2020. 

Since then, Longmire has overseen a transformation of the Sydney playing list which now includes a heap of youngsters set to carry the club forward for the next decade. 

With finals and a top-four berth on the agenda yet again, it is a testament to how Longmire fast tracks the blossom of his juvenile lads.  

Unsung hero #3

Errol gulden

It would be remiss of us to not herald one of the players John Longmire has turned into a genuine jet. 

Errol Gulden burst onto the scene in 2021 as a slight 19-year-old kid out of the Sydney AFL academy. 

Little did we know the immediate impact he would have in the elite level of Aussie Rules. 

Gulden produced a stunning 23-disposal and two-goal performance against Fremantle at Optus Stadium to guide his Swans to victory over the weekend. 

It was a performance which brought about comparisons to champion Swan Ryan O’Keefe – a gun left-footer in his own right. 

For all the talk about Buddy Franklin’s contract, this bloke deserves a similar amount of attention. 

Unsung hero #4

Mark blicavs

The big utility for Geelong did it all on Saturday night against Carlton. 

He went into the ruck, he played across half back, he played on the ball and he played out wide when he had to. 

Brad Scott used him the stop gap in many scenarios during the five-goal win over the Blues. 

Blicavs ended up with 20 disposals at 85% which comprised of five clearances (two centre clearances), three contested marks and four score involvements. 

He is not the name up in lights, but he is certainly an important cog to how Geelong operates as a unit. 

Unsung hero #5

patrick lipinski

The conditions were shocking and it required a strong performance around the contest. 

Patrick Lipisnki brought this in spades as Collingwood extended its unbeaten run to eight-straight games. 

Lipinski continues to prove his worth as one of the recruits of the season after another strong display for the Magpies. 

He conjured up 13 tackles, eight score involvement, six clearances and four inside 50s in a game where field territory was of utmost importance. 

To have only one clanger in the wet conditions was also a highlight of his poise with ball in hand. 

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