Retained players list explained


2017 AFL New Zealand National Draft

The AFL New Zealand National Draft will see all players who have yet to participated in the AFL New Zealand Premiership, placed into one of seven list categories. Highlighting the logistics of the competition and scheduling at North Harbour Stadium, the list categories are determined by age and regions throughout New Zealand.


Once an initial playing list has been established, athletes have their names entered into the AFL New Zealand National Draft, enabling coaching staff from the four competing teams (Northern Suns, Western Crows, Central Giants and Southern Saints) to select the available new players onto their 2017 AFL New Zealand Premiership playing rosters. Ongoing talent identification carried out through local, regional and national competitions, is utilised for further additions.




2017 AFL New Zealand Retained Players List

Following on from the inaugural AFL New Zealand Premiership, a “Retained Players List” has been added as an additional tool  to create balance and competitiveness within the competition.

With study, work, injury and locational alterations playing a role in player availability from season to season, it is important that each team is afforded the opportunity to retain players from the previous seasons list from each of the established draft categories.

Once the “Retained Players List” has been finalised by the Premiership teams, the remaining players will be re-entered into the national draft and will be available for selection by any of the four teams. This ensures an even spread of all draft categories across the four team rosters and equalises player availability that can be restricted due to location.


To date, clubs have had the option to retain;

  • One player as Captain
  • One player as a Playing Assistant Coach
  • A number one player selection
  • Three regional based players (Fly in from Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin)
  • One satellite city based player (Based in Waikato, Northland, Bay of Plenty, Taranaki)


To be followed by;

  • Three Auckland based players