Kleemann count too close to call

Headshot of Cameron Newbold
Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
The 2018 Kleemann Medal will be held tonight.
Camera IconThe 2018 Kleemann Medal will be held tonight.

One of the closest counts in history has been predicted by the six Great Southern Football League coaches ahead of tonight’s wide-open 60th edition of the Kleemann Medal count at Centennial Stadium.

In a season where none of the main fancies have played every game in the home-and-away season, the coaches believe a group of five players are likely to be in the running for the prestigious honour that is awarded to the fairest and best player in the GSFL competition.

Three of the six coaches have identified Railways contested ball winner Joel Want as the favourite to take out the 2018 HB Kleemann Medal while two have picked hard-running Mt Barker youngster Joel Gray.

Both Gray and Want are set to challenge North Albany’s Matt Orzel, who for a fourth straight season looms as a genuine contender.

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Orzel finished second in 2015 and has been fourth in the past two seasons but again 2018 could see the decorated former WAFL player win the one award that has eluded him.

Tigers star Zane Marwick is in the frame to become just the third person to win the medal three times with another consistent season set to see him poll prominently.

Craig Frost, Matt Candy and Kim Mayfield have all predicted Want to trump the field and win his first medal.

Want (16 votes) was the outright leader of the Albany Advertiser Footballer of the Year Award when voting went silent in round 13 but missed the next two games through injury.

He was three votes clear of Kangas’ Michael Trevenen in that award and shaded the same player by two votes in the Coaches’ Player of the Year Award as that voting also went in-house.

Denmark-Walpole gun Ryan Gaerth, who was not listed by any of the six coaches in their top three, was equal third in the Advertiser voting with 12 along with Orzel.

Of the group of five players predicted to figure by the coaches, Want and Orzel have both played 13 games followed by Marwick (12), Gray (12) and Trevenen (11).

Frost believes Want will poll more votes than Marwick from his club, but Kangas coach Craig Dew disagreed saying Marwick would win comfortably, despite missing three games with injury.

The Coaches Player of the Year, Albany Advertiser Footballer of the Year and GSFL Team of the Year will be announced at tonight’s gala presentations.

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