Four new faces feature in the latest the AFL Players’ Association’s Most Valuable Player of the Month nominees.
The six nominees feature five midfielders and one defender, with Hawthorn’s James Sicily the only lone on-baller featured among the six best players from Rounds 11 to 15, according to our expert panel.
The six nominees for the MVP of the Month title in June include two previous nominees in 2018, with Steele Sidebottom taking out the MVP of the Month title in April.
Shaun Higgins (North Melbourne)
Higgins has capitlised on North Melbourne’s hot form in 2018 and his last month has been exceptional, collecting more than 30 disposals in each of his four outings and kicking five goals. The smooth ball-user has also surged into the AFLCA Champion Player of the Year leaderboard, polling 32 coaches’ votes in Rounds 11 to 15.
Ollie Wines (Port Adelaide)
Due to their earlier bye in Round 10, Ollie Wines is the only member of this month’s nominees to play five matches between Rounds 11 and 15. Playing in four wins during that time, Wines has been the Power’s best contributor, including a colossal 29-disposal, 12-tackle and 10-clearance performance against the reigning premiers in Round 12.
James Sicily (Hawthorn)
Few have captivated the competition more than Sicily in 2018 and his last month has been the best of his career. The 23-year-old has been getting the ball at will across half-back and has even been able to go forward and impact the scoreboard, highlighted by his three-goal third quarter against the Crows in Round 13.
Steele Sidebottom (Collingwood)
After winning the MVP of the Month title at the beginning of the season, Sidebottom is back among the nominees and was unlucky to be excluded from last month’s batch. The Collingwood star will enter game 200 this weekend in fine touch after averaging 31 disposals in his last four outings.
Patrick Cripps (Carlton)
Carlton youngster Cripps continues to battle through injury and better opposition to be alongside club stalwart Kade Simpson as the Blues’ best in 2018. Despite four losses by an average of 32 points in his last four games, the 23-year-old averaged nearly 15 contested possessions per game and hit the scoreboard in Rounds 11 and 15.
Josh Kelly (GWS Giants)
The Giants have turned their season around and a lot of that has been due to the performances of Kelly. The smooth-moving midfielder is averaging 32 touches and has kicked four goals in his last four outings, with GWS on a four-game winning streak.
Which player do YOU think deserves to be the MVP of the Month? Vote below!
Each month of the home and away season, a group of six players are nominated by former AFLPA MVP Award winners Gerard Healy, Tim Watson, Chris Judd and the man the award was named after, Leigh Matthews, for the MVP of the Month award.
From there, the current players will then vote to decide who they believe is the MVP of the Month from the nominees, with the monthly winner automatically nominated for the end-of-season AFL Players’ MVP Award.
March/April — Rounds 1-6 — Steele Sidebottom
May — Rounds 7-10 — Jack Darling
June — Rounds 11-15
July — Rounds 16-19
August — Rounds 20-23