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Unsung Heroes — Round 13

Each week, looks at the players who flew under the radar in their team’s victory.

Port Adelaide: Steven Motlop

Often maligned when things aren’t going right, former Cat Steven Motlop was busy as ever on Thursday night. In greasy conditions, the 27-year-old was the most efficient player on the ground, with his disposals going at 95 per cent while collecting 23 touches, three clearances, seven tackles, six inside 50s and one goal over the top in the goal-square to cap off a great night.

Sydney: Heath Grundy

In game 250, Heath Grundy was as stoic as ever on Friday night. Up against the in-form team of the competition, Grundy registered 23 disposals at 91 per cent efficiency, three contested marks, seven rebounds and six one-percenters as the Swans defeated the Eagles for the second time in 2018.

Fremantle: Andrew Brayshaw

In a game dominated by Fremantle’s main midfielders, Andrew Brayshaw got in on the act in Round 13. The first-year Docker collected 20 disposals, five marks and five tackles against the Blues and may well be on his way to a Rising Star nomination this week.

St Kilda: Daniel McKenzie

Trailing by 31 points at three quarter time, the headlines about St Kilda were already being written. That was until they staged a remarkable and unlikely comeback to steal the victory from the Suns. Daniel McKenzie, who has been in and out of the senior team in his fourth year at the club, stood up when it mattered most, collecting eight disposals in the final term and kicking a crucial goal that brought the margin back to five points.

Hawthorn: Ryan Burton

Hawks fans would be clearly happy to keep their season alive but they’d be equally happy to see Ryan Burton continue to track in the right direction after an indifferent 2018. He collected 16 disposals at 87 per cent efficiency, six marks and seven inside 50s, proving the 21-year-old seems to have his confidence back.

Richmond: Daniel Rioli

Daniel Rioli only kicked one but it was arguably the goal of the day. As the Tigers pressed their foot to the throat of the Cats on Sunday nearing the 22-minute mark of the last term, Rioli chased the footy from centre wing to half forward before winning a free kick and an ensuing shot at goal. Calmly slotting his first for the season, Rioli put the Tigers result beyond doubt.