Collingwood star Steele Sidebottom has launched himself back into contention for the 2018 Shadforth Financial Group AFLCA Champion Player of the Year award after his Round 12 efforts.
The skillful midfielder polled nine votes from the respective coaches in the Queens’ Birthday clash against Melbourne for his 32 disposals, to jump from eighth to second spot on the leaderboard.
Sidebottom was one of only two players currently in the top ten to poll votes in Round 12, with teammate Brodie Grundy getting the nod with two votes after his mouthwatering duel with Melbourne ruckman Max Gawn.
AFLCA Champion Player of the Year leader Nat Fyfe failed to register a vote for the second consecutive week after being suspended, as did Richmond skipper Trent Cotchin and Gawn, while Patrick Cripps, Jack Darling, Jack Macrae, Tom Mitchell and Andrew Gaff, who all reside inside the top ten, had a bye in Round 12.
Four players received maximum coaches’ votes from the weekend’s play, including Ollie Wines (29 disposals and 12 tackles), Gary Ablett (34 touches), Jeremy Cameron (six goals and 26 disposals) and Adam Cerra (30 touches and eight inside 50s), who became the second-youngest player to receive 10 votes from the coaches in the award’s history – behind Stephen Coniglio.
The AFL Coaches’ Association votes for Round 12 (see the every vote from all the rounds so far at AFLCoaches.com.au):
Port adelaide v richmond
10 Wines (PA), 4 Bryne-Jones (PA), 4 Powell-Pepper (PA), 4 Westhoff (PA), 4 Wingard (PA), 2 Polec (PA), 2 Short (Rich)
geelong v north melbourne
10 Ablett (Geel), 8 Higgins (NM), 5 Kolodjashnij (Geel), 3 Blicavs (Geel), 2 Cunico (Geel), 2 Dangerfield (Geel)
gws giants v gold coast
10 Cameron (GWS), 8 Kelly (GWS), 6 Ward (GWS), 4 Whitfield (GWS), 2 Shiel (GWS)
st kilda v sydney
9 Kennedy (Syd), 5 Sinclair (Syd), 4 Franklin (Syd), 4 Heeney (Syd), 4 Parker (Syd), 2 Florent (Syd), 2 Jones (Syd)
brisbane v essendon
9 Andrews (BL), 7 Stringer (Ess), 6 Z. Merrett (Ess), 6 Saad (Ess), 1 Hurley (Ess), 1 Witherden (BL)
fremantle v adelaide
10 Cerra (Frem), 7 Cox (Frem), 7 Neale (Frem), 3 Betts (Adel), 2 Gibbs (Adel), 1 Wilson (Frem)
melbourne v collingwood
9 Sidebottom (Coll), 8 De Goey (Coll), 7 Cox (Coll), 3 T. McDonald (Melb), 2 Grundy (Coll), 1 Stephenson (Coll)
51 — NAT FYFE (FREM)
47 — STEELE SIDEBOTTOM (COLL)
46 — PATRICK CRIPPS (CARL)
45 — TRENT COTCHIN (RICH)
45 — MAX GAWN (MELB)
42 — JACK DARLING (WC)
40 — JACK MACRAE (WB)
40 — TOM MITCHELL (HAW)
37 — ANDREW GAFF (WC)
37 — BRODIE GRUNDY (COLL)