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Pair of Panthers taken in AFL Draft!

Pair of Panthers taken in AFL Draft!

23 November 2018

Two South Adelaide juniors have been given their chance at the AFL after the conclusion of today's national and rookie drafts.

Strong-bodied midfielder Tom Sparrow was the first Panther to have his name called, as the Melbourne Demons snapped up the Bridgewater/Callington junior with pick 27 in the national draft.

He becomes the first Panther taken in the national draft since Caleb Daniel was selected at pick 46 by the Western Bulldogs in 2014 and the highest pick since Ryan Griffen also made his way to Whitten Oval with pick three of the 2004 draft.

A contested animal, known for his attack on the football and speed and power away from stoppages, Sparrow was a member of South Australia's Under-18 National Championship winning side earlier in the year, notching 17 touches in the title decider against Victoria Metro.

His football talents kept him busy during 2018, splitting time between State committments, South Adelaide and captaining Prince Alfred College's First XVIII.

Through eight Under-18s games Sparrow averaged 22.2 disposals, 6.1 clearances and six tackles per contest, while also notching two Reserves games with the Panthers during the season.

Next cab off the rank was exciting small forward/midfielder Jake Tarca, who will re-unite with former teammate Nathan Kreuger at Geelong after being called at pick 68 by the Cats.

Originally from the Encounter Bay Football Club, Tarca kicked 27 goals in his 15 games with South's Under-18s this season, averaging 13.3 touches in the process.

An exciting talent with plenty of x-factor, he was among the Panthers best performers in their Under-18 Grand Final against Woodville-West Torrens, slotting four goals as the most damaging forward on the ground.

Help support South Adelaide's talent pathway with a tax deductible donation to the SAFC Junior Development Fund.

About the Author:Matt Sampson

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