Sport AFL Giants pick Boyd as No.1 AFL draftee
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Giants pick Boyd as No.1 AFL draftee

New draftees
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Greater Western Sydney did as the football expected they would, selecting Tom Boyd with the No.1 pick at the AFL national draft.

The Giants chose the Victorian-born Boyd, a 201cm tall key forward, with the first selection in Thursday night’s draft on the Gold Coast.

GWS used the second selection of the draft to secure Victorian midfielder Josh Kelly.

St Kilda, with the third pick, claimed half-forward Jack Billings, with the Western Bulldogs using pick four to snare on-baller Marcus Bontempelli.

Gold Coast selected Tasmanian Kade Kolodjashnij with pick five and Collingwood recruited South Australian defender Matt Scharenberg with the sixth pick.

Brisbane opted for another South Australian, James Aish, at pick seven.

The eighth pick was decided pre-draft with North Melbourne using a father-son selection on Luke McDonald, the son of Kangaroos stalwart Donald McDonald.

Melbourne chose Victorian midfielder Christian Salem with the ninth pick while Collingwood used pick 10 on Nathan Freeman, another Victorian on-baller.

Boyd’s selection by Greater Western Sydney with the number one pick was widely expected, with the Victorian key forward rated a ready-made prospect for AFL football.

“I’m just super excited … I’m really humbled,” Boyd said.

But he was uncertain if he was ready to handle the pressure of being the top pick.

“I can’t say I am, I haven’t experienced it yet but I just want to take the challenge head-on,” he said.

The AFL’s talent expert, Kevin Sheehan, said 18-year-old Boyd, from Eastern Ranges, was a unique talent.

“At that size – 201cm, 102 kilograms as well – and he’s so quick off the mark, he’s really impossible to stop when he’s on a burst.

“He’s very quick over 20 metres and he’s a lovely long kick, so he is quite unique.”

The Giants now have three No.1 draft picks on their roster, with Boyd following Lachie Whitfield (2012) and Jonathon Patton (2011).

The top 20:-

1. Greater Western Sydney – Tom Boyd
2. Greater Western Sydney – Josh Kelly
3. St Kilda – Jack Billings
4. Western Bulldogs – Marcus Bontempelli
5. Gold Coast – Kade Kolodjashnij
6. Collingwood – Matthew Scharenberg
7. Brisbane Lions – James Aish
8. North Melbourne – Luke McDonald (f/son)
9. Melbourne – Christian Salem
10. Collingwood – Nathan Freeman
11. West Coast – Dom Sheed
12. Richmond – Ben Lennon
13. Carlton – Patrick Cripps
14. Greater Western Sydney – Cameron McCarthy
15. Sydney Swans – Zak Jones
16. Geelong – Darcy Lang
17. Fremantle – Michael Apeness
18. St Kilda – Luke Dunstan
19. St Kilda – Blake Acres
20. Gold Coast – Jack Leslie (post round one compensation pick)