Nominees for 2018 AFL New Zealand U18 Player of the year

AFL New Zealand would like to congratulate the following nominees for the AFL New Zealand U18 Player of the year. 


The winner will be announced at the 2018 High Performance Awards which will be held on Sunday the 22nd of April at Mac’s Function Centre in Wellington.


Congratulations to all the nominees!


Blake Nahu

Blake Nahu from the Waikato has a big impact in the sport over the past 12 months.

Nahu has been a part of NZ Warriors development sides in the past and brings relative Rugby League skills over to the game of AFL.

Now playing in his third season and having grown into a senior player, Nahu has been one of the top three players in this year’s AFL New Zealand Premiership.

He will make his debut in the New Zealand Senior side playing against the AFL Academy at Westpac Stadium on Tuesday April 24th.


Carlos Donnell-Brown

Carlos Donnell-Brown has achieved big things in 2017.

He started the year with winning the AFL New Zealand Premiership with the Southern Saints before being named Captain of the New Zealand U18 side on their tour to Melbourne in May.

Carlos earned himself a spot to play for New Zealand at the 2017 International Cup in August and was a key midfielder in helping the side reach the Grand Final on the MCG.


Josh Mackie

Otago based Josh Mackie has gone from strength to strength over the past year.

The 18 year old is fearless in the way he plays and his efforts didn’t go unnoticed in the 2017 AFL New Zealand Premiership when New Zealand Senior Head Coach included him in the NZ squad for the ANZAC and International Cup campaigns.

His agility along with his height gives him the ability to take strong marks but also the attribute of evading players which showed in his performances throughout last year’s International Cup.


Josh Morgan-Ranui

Josh Morgan-Ranui is an athlete full of talent. His performance for the New Zealand U18 side earned him a Best on Ground award against the Mornington Peninsula inter league side over in Melbourne in May.

Picked at number 1 by the Southern Saints in the AFL New Zealand Draft, the 18 year old produced a stellar 2017 Premiership season.

Josh will make his debut for the New Zealand Senior side against the AFL Academy after being named as an emergency in 2017.


Misilifi Faimalo

Based in Wellington, Misilifi Faimalo is a superstar in the making.

The 18 year old made his International Cup debut last August and was a key contributor in all five games.

First introduced to the game through the AFL Cup Secondary Schools competition, Misilifi‘s shows excellent pace, skills and evasiveness and shows why he a standout at this years AFL International Cup.

Misilifi made the move to the Southern Saints in this year’s AFL New Zealand Premiership, teaming up with fellow nominee Josh Morgan-Ranui.


Read more:

Nominees for 2018 AFL New Zealand Rising Star

Nominees for AFL New Zealand U17 Player of the year

Nominees for 2018 Volunteer of the Year