St Kilda emerging star Rowan Marshall continues his rapid rise in the AFL.
Recently named in the 2019 AFL New Zealand Heritage team, Marshall’s impressive outing against the Giants was the latest in a string of strong performances that has elevated the young ruckman’s standing around the league.
The 23-year-old held his own against a far more experienced and bigger-bodied opponent in veteran Shane Mumford, winning 27 hit-outs and career-high numbers in both clearances (nine) and contested possessions (14).
But as we’ve come to expect from ‘The Prospect’, his influence didn’t stop in the middle.
Two goals straight, six score involvements and 512 metres gained only strengthened his case as the Saints’ most valuable ruckman, and perfectly showcased his impact around the ground.
After a summer-long tussle for the mantle of preferred ruck, Marshall was the unlucky omission from the side in Round 1.
But the fan favourite came back with a vengeance in Round 2, playing a crucial role as the Saints saw off a last-quarter surge from the Bombers.
The following week saw the 201cm Portland product own the centre circle in the West, before playing a crucial role in wins over Hawthorn and Melbourne.
Marshall was sorely missed with an illness in Round 6, but his immediate return to career-best form against the Giants has him firmly in best-and-fairest calculations.