Carlton Pick 66 The Carlton Football Club selected Finn O’Dwyer with pick No.66 in this year’s 2018 NAB AFL Draft.
Representing the Murray Bushrangers in the TAC Cup competition, O’Dwyer has been described as a lively 190cm forward who can prove troublesome for the opposition’s defence.
His reading of the game as well as his agility and burst of speed are his assets.
Boarding at Xavier College for the last three years, O’Dwyer was one of 126 players invited to participate in the state-based combine testing sessions, as part of the 2018 AFL Combine.
“It’s pretty unreal, something I would not have expected in my wildest dreams,” O’Dwyer told the Chronicle on Saturday morning.
“I was pretty surprised, I just saw it on TV watching at home.”
O’Dwyer said being at Xavier College over the last few years helped him take advantage of their facilities and resources but admitted the travelling to games for Bushrangers was tough.
“But you do it because you love the game,” he said.
Although a Tigers fan, O’Dwyer said he would have been happy to go anywhere but was pleased it was a Melbourne based club and is looking to meet and learn from everyone at Carlton.
“They have got pretty good leaders in Docherty (Sam), Cripps (Patrick), McGovern (Mitch) this year. They have also got Setterfield (Will) drafted, who I have met a few times.”
Locally ‘O’Dwyer said he benefited from growing up next door to the Howe boys, Dan who now plays for Hawthorn and Lach who has played VFL and was a dominant ruck for Yarrawonga in Ovens & Murray League this year.
“I have been growing up with the boys as long as I can remember, in the back yard just rousing each other.”
O’Dwyer also mentioned Yarrawonga’s Kyle Arhibald and Bronson Schofield who have assisted his development with extra training and also Xavier College teacher Daryl Mahoney who has been very supportive of Finn over the past few years.
After visiting Carlton at their home base at Ikon Park a couple of weeks ago O’Dwyer said he immediately felt welcomed and is pleased to be joining close mate from Xavier College father-son draftee Ben Silvagni and joked he might have to bunk in with him for a while.
Carlton’s GM of List Management and Strategy Stephen Silvagni said the club was delighted with the quality talent it has landed during the 2018 NAB AFL Draft and Rookie Draft.
“We couldn’t be happier with the quality of players and people we have brought into the Carlton Football Club,” Silvagni said.
“Both Ben (Silvagni) and Finn are versatile players who we believe will add some great flexibility to our playing list and strong depth which is important as we take our next, exciting step as a club.”
According to Silvagni, the rangy and versatile prospect is one to watch.
“I’ve actually had my eye on him for a number of years,” Silvagni said.
“He’s schooled himself at Xavier College, but he hasn’t played a lot of footy over the last couple of years. He’s had some injuries, playing with the Bushrangers.
“He’s grown quite a bit over the last 12 months and we still see that he’s got some growing left in him. We think it’ll be a bit of a slow process to get his body up to AFL football.
“But he’s an elite decision-maker, he’s got excellent skills and he competes very well playing in a variety of positions.”
Finn also thanked parents Liz and Frank O’Dwyer who have been fully supportive of his football journey but also heaped praise on his older brother Jack who he described as also being very supportive and someone who he always strived to play with even if he was up a couple of age groups.