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Doedee hunting debut

Tom Doedee in action against West Adelaide at City Mazda Stadium
Tom Doedee continues to impress for the SANFL Crows
I know AFL footy is another big step up and I have to earn that chance, but I’m confident I could take it on.
Tom Doedee

Young defender Tom Doedee has his sights set on playing AFL football this season.

Doedee, 20, is among several untried Crows banging down the door at SANFL level as competition for senior spots starts to heat up.

The athletic backman was outstanding in Adelaide’s crushing SANFL win over North Adelaide on Saturday. Doedee had a career-best 25 possessions and four rebound 50ms in an eye-catching display across half-back alongside fellow in-form defender Kyle Cheney.

The pair controlled proceedings in defence to limit the Roosters to just five goals for the game and ensured the majority of the match was played in Adelaide’s forward half.

Doedee said he felt ready for AFL action should an opportunity present.

“It’s something I’ve been looking forward to since the day I got picked up,” he said.

“The coaches are happy with the way I’m playing at the moment and I showed during the pre-season I could hold my own against bigger players like Josh Jenkins and Tex Walker.

“I know AFL footy is another big step up and I have to earn that chance, but I’m confident I could take it on.”

SANFL stats: Round Seven v North Adelaide

Something that separates Doedee from many other defenders is his aggressiveness and ability in the air. He’s rarely beaten one-on-one and often out-marks taller opponents using his incredible vertical leap.

Doedee claimed seven marks against the Roosters on Saturday including five intercepts – matched only by teammate Cheney.

Defence always comes first, but Doedee said he’d rather be constructive than destructive from the backline.

“The coaches have told me to go for my marks if I think I can take them,” he said.

“Obviously you still have to play the percentages and if it’s not the best option then I’ll try and spoil, but my marking is a bit of a strength for me.”


A first-round pick at the 2015 National Draft, Doedee has already endured his fair share of interruptions this year.

The 20-year-old didn’t play a game throughout the pre-season due to knee soreness. He was cleared to return in Adelaide’s Round Two win over South Adelaide, but was again sidelined by a shoulder complaint.

“It was frustrating early,” Doedee admitted.

“I missed a bit of time with the knee then came back for one game but went straight back out for another two.

“But I’ve played three games in a row now and that continuity is definitely starting to flow through into my footy.

“Maintaining that consistency is the big thing for me now.”

Saturday’s victory propelled the SANFL Crows back inside the top five on the League ladder for the first time since Round Two.

The Club confronts sixth-placed Glenelg, which is below Adelaide by percentage only, next weekend in a crunch clash at Gliderol Stadium.

“They’ll be a good challenge. They’re a good team,” Doedee said.

“We’re getting a lot of our players back, we’re starting to play some good footy and we’re getting our key numbers back to where we want them.

“If we keep playing our way and keep doing what we do, we can beat anyone.

“We’ll go in confident.”

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs