Anyone can contribute to The Roar and have their work featured alongside some of Australia’s most prominent sports journalists.
The 2018 AFL Draft was held across two days; Thursday, November 22 and Friday, November 23.
Sam Walsh was the first selection of the draft, being picked by the Carlton Football Club. Gold Coast made headlines with the next two picks, selecting highly-touted South Australian duo Jack Lukosius and Izak Rankine – sparking fears the embattled Suns were setting themselves up for yet another exodus.
|1||2||Gold Coast Suns||Jack Lukosius|
|1||3||Gold Coast Suns||Izak Rankine|
|1||4||St Kilda||Max King|
|1||5||Port Adelaide||Connor Rozee|
|1||6||Gold Coast Suns||Ben King|
|1||7||Western Bulldogs||Bailey Smith|
|1||8||North Melbourne||Tarryn Thomas|
|1||9||Adelaide Crows||Chayce Jones|
|1||10||Sydney Swans||Nick Blakey|
|1||11||GWS Giants||Jye Caldwell|
|1||12||Port Adelaide||Zak Butters|
|1||14||GWS Giants||Jackson Hately|
|1||16||Adelaide Crows||Ned McHenry|
|1||18||Port Adelaide||Xavier Duursma|
|1||21||Brisbane Lions||Ely Smith|
|1||22||GWS Giants||Xavier O’Halloran|
|1||23||Gold Coast Suns||Jez McLennan|
|2||24||GWS Giants||Ian Hill|
|2||25||Sydney Swans||James Rowbottom|
|2||26||Western Bulldogs||Rhylee West|
|2||28||West Coast Eagles||Xavier O’Neill|
|2||30||Adelaide Crows||William Hamill|
|2||31||West Coast Eagles||Luke Foley|
|2||34||GWS Giants||Kieren Briggs|
|2||35||West Coast Eagles||Bailey Williams|
|2||36||Brisbane Lions||Tom Berry|
|2||37||Western Bulldogs||Laitham Vandermeer|
|2||39||West Coast Eagles||Jarrod Cameron|
|2||40||Brisbane Lions||Tom Joyce|
|2||41||St Kilda||Jack Bytel|
|2||42||Brisbane Lions||Connor McFadyen|
|3||44||Sydney Swans||Justin McInerney|
|3||45||Western Bulldogs||Ben Cavarra|
|3||46||North Melbourne||Curtis Taylor|
|3||47||St Kilda||Matthew Parker|
|3||49||North Melbourne||Bailey Scott|
|3||51||Sydney Swans||Zac Foot|
|3||54||St Kilda||Nick Hind|
|3||55||Brisbane Lions||Noah Answerth|
|4||61||GWS Giants||Connor Idun|
|4||64||Adelaide Crows||Lachlan Sholl|
|4||67||St Kilda||Robbie Young|
|4||69||North Melbourne||Joel Crocker|
|5||71||Gold Coast Suns||Caleb Graham|
|5||73||Port Adelaide||Riley Grundy|
|5||76||Port Adelaide||Boyd Woodcock|
|5||78||Western Bulldogs||Will Hayes|
Back in its VFL days, the national draft was introduced in 1981, allowing the Victorian teams to acquire interstate players depending on where they finished on the ladder.
It has since been expanded to include players from all locations, and is now the primary source of new talent for every AFL club.
The draft order is determined each year by awarding the clubs their draft picks in reverse finishing order – the club that finished last receives the first pick, and so on.
However these picks can then change hands during the trade period and the final draft order is often quite different to the original one released after the end of the season.
After originally being held in 1981 and 1982, the draft was then not held again until 1986, but has been held in some form every year since.
For much of its early history it was held in Victoria each year, but in recent times it has regularly been held interstate.
The draft was brought to the Gold Coast for the 2010 event, then to Sydney for 2011, and then returned to Gold Coast for several years, before being moved to Adelaide in 2015 and to Sydney again in 2016.
The draft has returned to Melbourne for 2018, however.
The No.1 draft pick is always a prized possession, though clubs have gotten smarter about using it in modern times than they were in the past.
1987 No.1 pick Richard Loudner for example only ever played four games for his club, Richmond. But in recent times No.1 picks like Nick Riewoldt, Luke Hodge and Adam Cooney have won premierships, Brownlows, and become legends of the game.
In the table below is every No.1 draft pick in VFL/AFL history, from 1981 onwards.
|Draft||Player||Selected by||Recruited from||League recruited from|
|1982||Andrew Purser||Footscray||East Fremantle||WAFL|
|1986||Martin Leslie||Brisbane Bears||Port Adelaide Magpies||SANFL|
|1987||Richard Lounder||Richmond||Central District||SANFL|
|1988||Alex McDonald||Hawthorn||Ballarat YCW||Ballarat Football League|
|1989||Anthony Banik||Richmond||Won Wron Woodside||Alberton Football League|
|1990||Stephen Hooper||Geelong||East Perth||WAFL|
|1991||John Hutton||Brisbane Bears||Claremont||WAFL|
|1992||Drew Banfield||West Coast Eagles||Subiaco||WAFL|
|1993||Darren Gaspar||Sydney||South Fremantle||WAFL|
|1994||Jeff White||Fremantle||Dandenong Stingrays||TAC Cup|
|1995||Clive Waterhouse||Fremantle||Port Adelaide Magpies||SANFL|
|1996||Michael Gardiner||West Coast Eagles||Claremont||WAFL|
|1997||Travis Johnstone||Melbourne||Dandenong Stingrays||TAC Cup|
|1998||Des Headland||Brisbane Lions||Subiaco||WAFL|
|1999||Josh Fraser||Collingwood||Murray Bushrangers||TAC Cup|
|2000||Nick Riewoldt||St Kilda||Southport Sharks||QAFL|
|2001||Luke Hodge||Hawthorn||Geelong Falcons||TAC Cup|
|2002||Brendon Goddard||St Kilda||Gippsland Power||TAC Cup|
|2003||Adam Cooney||Western Bulldogs||West Adelaide||SANFL|
|2004||Brett Deledio||Richmond||Murray Bushrangers||TAC Cup|
|2005||Marc Murphy||Carlton||Oakleigh Chargers||TAC Cup|
|2007||Matthew Kreuzer||Carlton||Northern Knights||TAC Cup|
|2008||Jack Watts||Melbourne||Sandringham Dragons||TAC Cup|
|2009||Tom Scully||Melbourne||Dandenong Stingrays||TAC Cup|
|2010||David Swallow||Gold Coast Suns||East Fremantle Football Club||WAFL|
|2011||Jonathon Patton||GWS Giants||Eastern Ranges||TAC Cup|
|2012||Lachie Whitfield||GWS Giants||Dandenong Stingrays||TAC Cup|
|2013||Tom Boyd||GWS Giants||Eastern Ranges||TAC Cup|
|2014||Paddy McCartin||St Kilda||Geelong Falcons||TAC Cup|
|2015||Jacob Weitering||Carlton||Dandenong Stingrays||TAC Cup|
|2016||Andrew McGrath||Essendon||Sandringham Dragons||TAC Cup|
|2017||Cam Rayner||Brisbane Lions||Western Jets||TAC Cup|
|2018||Sam Walsh||Carlton||Geelong Falcons||TAC Cup|