Talent runs in the family as Awatere claims round 1 Rising Star

The AFL New Zealand Rising Star award will be awarded weekly to a standout young player in the 2020 AFL New Zealand Premiership.


Each week the award will be allocated to those who show ability that favours the core components it takes to become an AFL Player. To be eligible to be nominated for the award, a player must be born in 2001 or younger.

The AFL New Zealand Rising Star award for round 1 of the 2020 AFL New Zealand Premiership has been awarded to Ryan Awatere from the AFLNZ Academy.

Ryan is from Wellington and is the younger brother of Alex Awatere who represented the New Zealand Falcons in 2018.

He has been involved in the AFLNZ pathway for the past 4 years and played for the Central Giants as a development player during round 1 of the 2020 Premiership.

The small forward impressed early on as he managed to create space in the forward line and kicked a goal in his first game in the National competition.

With further development playing in the Premiership, Awatere has great potential to grow into a talented footy player.

AFL New Zealand asked Ryan a couple of questions during the week.

What School do you attend?

I attend Aotea College in Porirua Wellington.

What sports did you play growing up?

I played Rugby, Flag and Basketball.

How did you get into AFL?

I was watching my brother go through the AFLNZ Pathway and then watching him play for the North City Demons in Wellington.

What do you enjoy about playing AFL?

What I enjoy most about playing AFL is the physicality of the sport, kicking goal and being part of a team.

What are your goals for AFL in the future?

My goals in the future are to make the NZ Under 18’s and then following on from that making the NZ Falcons in the not to distant future. I also want to play as many games in the Premiership as possible.

What do you think your biggest advantage is out on the field?

My advantage out on the field is that I feel that I can read the game quite well and as a development player in the senior competition, I am not intimidated by bigger players on the field.