Adelaide SANFL recruit Tyler Welsh says joining the Club where his father played more than 100 AFL games is a proud moment for the family.
The son of four-time Adelaide leading goalkicker Scott Welsh will play with the Crows’ State League side in 2024, outside of his state and national academy commitments, as part of the SANFL’s Rookie Program.
Welsh, a Woodville-West Torrens junior, has been training with the squad since pre-season kicked off and told AFC Media being asked to join the Crows’ SANFL program was a special moment for him and his family.
“It’s been an unbelievable experience so far,” Welsh said.
“I’ve been a huge Crows fan, so it’s absolutely surreal and just amazing being around everybody.
“My Mum is so stoked and so is Dad. They’re always telling me how proud they are of me.
“Dad just tells me that I have an amazing opportunity so I need to work hard and make sure I don’t take it for granted, and to do whatever I can to play AFL one day.”
Scott played 36 AFL games for North Melbourne, before being traded back home to SA, where he lined up in 129 games for the Crows from 2000-2007.
His final two seasons were at the Western Bulldogs, where he added another 40 AFL games to his name.
Welsh, 17, said he remembered attending a few of his father’s games at the age of three but now regularly watched his highlights.
“I know I went to a few (of his games) when I was about three, but I can’t really remember too much of it, I just know he was a great player,” Welsh, also a forward, said.
“Dad always has his highlights on the TV, so I have seen a few of his games more recently - I just watched how he went up for marks and he has taught me a bit about leading patterns.
“The main thing I took out of watching Dad’s highlights was how hard he worked and how he positioned himself. That has really helped me with my game - watching him and seeing what he did.”
Welsh, who isn’t eligible to be drafted until next year, is also completing an AFL Sportsready Community and Football Administration Traineeship and has been placed at the Club for the practical component of the course.
“I was studying Year 11 but as soon as this opportunity came up, I had a conversation with my parents about leaving school and to begin the traineeship here because it would help me to live my dream, which is to play AFL,” Welsh said.
“It’s a great opportunity and I’m really fortunate to be able to do it.”
Welsh said he was looking forward to getting stuck into training post-Christmas and wanted to learn as much as he could.
“I’ve learnt a lot already, including how to train like a professional athlete,’ Welsh said.
“To help me get better at my game, I’m really looking forward to spending some time with Tex Walker, he’ll be great to learn from and get some tips on how to improve.
“I’m hoping to improve my fitness and everything
“I just want to get better, so I’ll work on a lot of things throughout the pre-season and try to be the best I can be.”