The Northern Suns have announced that they will add Auckland based players Heta Scarf-Matthews, Josh Allen and Pete Rodgers to their retained players list for the 2018 AFL New Zealand Premiership. The trio will join Playing Assistant Coach Mitch Ryan in the same category.
The players have been retained through Category 1 of the Retained Players List (RPL): Retention of Auckland based players who have not played for the New Zealand Senior team over the past 12 months.
Ruckman Josh Allen has been retained by the Northern Suns in 2018.
Playing in his first AFL New Zealand Premiership in 2017, the 32 year old was a quiet achiever all season. Week in, week out Allen would consistently dominate the ruck contest making it effortless for midfielders Will Dickinson and Jackson Clince to gain the centre clearance.
Josh plays for the Manurewa Raiders in the Auckland AFL and will look to rotate his time in the ruck with fellow team mate and playing assistant coach Mitch Ryan.
Pete Rodgers will be apart of the Northern Suns squad for the third consecutive season.
Rodgers showed that he can foot it with the best players in the country and made it tough for his opponents utilising his strong defensive tackling coupled with excellent communication skills.
The University Blues defender has been a key player for the Suns in the past two seasons and is no doubt a welcome addition to Dave Abetz’ side.
Formerly based in Nelson, Heta Scarf-Matthews will soon make the move to Auckland for the 2018 AFL New Zealand Premiership.
The Otago representative had a shortened season in 2017 but Scarf-Matthews was a shining light for the Suns in 2016. With a Soccer background, he reads the play extremely well and finds himself getting stuck in to every contest.
The 2016 AFL New Zealand U18 Player of the year will be called upon to step up his game to another level in 2018 and he will be up for the challenge.