The AFL New Zealand Rising Star award for Round 7 of the 2017 Premiership has been awarded to Declan Crann of the AFL New Zealand Academy.
In his third year playing AFL, Declan’s game understanding, athletic ability, skill to distribute and maturity are all developing and are among some of the reasons he has been awarded the Round seven Rising Star.
The 16 year old played with the Central Giants over the weekend and showed why he is one to watch in the future with his impressive skills and speed. Declan will look to continue his good form and development leading into the upcoming national campaign in Wellington next month.
“Declan is coming off a hand injury and comes back into the game as he left it. At 185cm Declan is a mobile player that likes to attack the ball and that is some of the attributes that make him exciting to watch. With Declan’s knowledge and ability, it will be good to see him lead the way taking on a leadership role amongst the AFLNZ Academy level 2.” National Youth Manager, Mick Coultard.
AFL New Zealand caught up with Declan a few days ago to ask him a few questions about playing AFL.
What School do you attend?
Green Bay High School in West Auckland.
What kind of sports did you play growing up?
Growing up, I played Rugby, Tennis, Touch any kind of sport with a round ball in it.
How did you get into AFL?
I first started out in AFL when I played in the Hawks Cup for my School team (Green Bay High School). From there, I was selected into the AFLNZ Academy and have now been playing for 3 years.
What do you enjoy about playing AFL?
Big or small you can still be a great player. AFL is such an athletic sport with all fitness aspects which builds up my fitness for other sports too.
What are your goals for AFL in the future?
Enjoy it the best I can at a high level of play, getting up there in the AFLNZ community, giving tips and playing hard.
What do you think your biggest advantage is out on the field?
My speed around the ball and reading the plays, moving back into position and assisting.