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Ronke joins Rising Star ranks

Sydney Swans Media  May 15, 2018 4:11 PM

Ben Ronke and Harry Cunningham celebrate Friday night's win over Hawthorn.

Ben Ronke and Harry Cunningham celebrate Friday night's win over Hawthorn.

Ben Ronke has become the 28th member of the Sydney Swans’ proud Rising Star family with his Round 8 nomination for the AFL’s Rising Star award.

Coming on top of his record-breaking seven-goal haul against Hawthorn last Friday and his maximum 10 votes in the AFL Coach’s Association Player of the Year Award, Ronke will now be among the contenders for what is effectively the ‘Young Brownlow’.

To be eligible nominated players must be under the age as of 21 at 1 January 2018, and have played no more than 10 AFL games.

Ronke joins weekly nominations from the first seven rounds of the 2018 season – Port Adelaide’s Riley Bonner, Adelaide’s Tom Doedee, Collingwood’s Jaidyn Stephenson, St Kilda’s Ben Long, West Coast’s Ben Waterman and Geelong’s Jack Henry – and those that will follow in the subsequent 15 rounds.

Ronke’s nomination continues the Swans proud history in the coveted award, which counts among 25 annual winners two current AFL coaches (Nathan Buckley and Chris Scott), two current AFL captains (Joel Selwood and Dyson Heppell), and four Brownlow Medalists (Buckley, Adam Goodes, Ben Cousins and Sam Mitchell).

The Swans’ Rising Star history ranks second in the AFL in terms of overall winners, with the winning trio of Goodes (1999), Dan Hannebery (2010) and Callum Mills (2016) surpassed only by Brisbane’s winning quartet of Buckley (1993), Scott (1994), Daniel Rich (2009) and Lewis Taylor (2014).

In 1999, Goodes polled 33 votes in the count to win from Adelaide’s Brett Burton (24), Brisbane’s Simon Black (22), Essendon’s Dean Rioli (7) and Brisbane’s Luke Power (5).

In 2010, Hannebery polled 45 votes to win from Melbourne’s Tom Scully (35), Brisbane’s Tom Rockliff (34), Melbourne’s Jack Trengove (11), North Mebourne’s Ryan Bastinac (6), Carlton’s Jeff Garlett (5), Fremantle’s Nat Fyfe (3), Essendon’s Michael Hurley (2), West Coast’s Nick Naitanui (2), Collingwood’s Ben Reid (1) and Hawthorn’s Ben Stratton (1).

And in 2016, Mills polled 49 votes to win from Western Bulldog Caleb Daniels (41), Carlton’s Jacob Weitering (26), Essendon’s Darcy Parish (19), Collingwood’s Darcy Moore (9), Melbourne’s Christian Petracca (2), St Kilda’s Jade Gresham (2), Melbourne’s Clayton Oliver (1) and Fremantle’s Lachie Weller (1).

Stefan Carey was equal second behind Port Adelaide’s Michael Wilson in 1997, with Troy Cook seventh, and Jude Bolton was sixth behind Fremantle’s Paul Hasleby in 2000.

Tadgh Kennelly was eighth behind St Kilda’s Nick Riewoldt in 2002, Adam Schneider was fifth behind Hawthorn’s Sam Mitchell in 2003, and Paul Bevan was equal fourth behind Melbourne’s Jared Rivers in 2004.

Sam Reid was sixth behind Essendon’s Dyson Heppell in 2011, and Tom Mitchell was equal fourth behind the Gold Coast’s Jaeger O’Meara in 2013, and Harry Cunningham was eighth in 2014 behind Brisbane’s Lewis Taylor, after his narrow win over the Bulldogs’ Marcus Bontempelli.

In 2015, Swans fancy Isaac Heeney was fourth behind Melbourne’s Jesse Hogan. Hogan polled 49 votes to beat Carlton’s Patrick Cripps (41), West Coast’s Dom Sheed (27), Heeney (12). Melbourne’s Angus Brayshaw (8), Gold Coast’s Touk Miller (6) and Adam Saad (3), Adelaide’s Jake Lever (2), Collingwood’s Jordan DeGoey (1) and Geelong’s Jackson Thurlow (1).

Six clubs have won the AFL Rising Star award twice – Essendon (Dyson Heppell 2011, Andrew McGrath 2017), Fremantle (Paul Hasleby 2000, Rhys Palmer 2008), Hawthorn (Nick Holland 1995, Sam Mitchell 2003), Melbourne (Jared Rivers 2004, Jesse Hogan 2015), Port Adelaide (Michael Wilson 1997, Danyle Pearce 2006) and St Kilda (Justin Koschitzke 2001, Nick Riewoldt 2002).

Five clubs have won the award once – Adelaide (Daniel Talia 2012), Geelong (Joel Selwood 2007), Gold Coast (Jaeger O’Meara 2013), North Melbourne ( Byron Pickett 1998), Richmond (Brett Deledio 2005) and West Coast (Ben Cousins 1996).

That leaves four clubs without a winner – Carlton, Collingwood, GWS Giants and Western Bulldogs.

Eleven members of the 2018 Swans playing list have received a weekly nomination for the Rising Star award – Kieren Jack, Hannebery, Reid, Cunningham, Jake Lloyd, Heeney, Tom Papley, Mills, Lewis Melican, Will Hayward and Ronke.

The full list of Swans nominees is:

1995 – Michael O’Loughlin, Justin Crawford
1996 – Shannon Grant, Daniel McPherson
1997 – Stefan Carey, Troy Cook
1998 – Jason Saddington, Jared Crouch
1999 – Adam Goodes, Ben Mathews
2000 – Jude Bolton
2002 – Tadgh Kennelly
2003 – Adam Schneider, Lewis Roberts-Thomson
2004 – Paul Bevan
2008 – Kieren Jack
2009 – Jesse White
2010 – Dan Hannebery
2011 – Sam Reid
2013 – Tom Mitchell
2014 – Harry Cunningham, Jake Lloyd
2015 – Isaac Heeney
2016 – Tom Papley, Callum Mills
2017 – Lewis Melican, Will Hayward
2018 – Ben Ronke

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