NORWOOD captain Matthew Nunn and ruckman Michael Knoll have been named in the SANFL State Team for its game against the best of the WAFL on Saturday 15 May.
The states will renew rivalries for the Haydn Bunton Cup with South Australia hoping to record consecutive wins against the Sandgropers after a memorable seven-point win at Perth’s Optus Stadium in 2019.
Ladder-leading South Adelaide has seven players chosen while last year’s grand finalist North Adelaide has six. Adelaide and West Adelaide have no players selected.
South Adelaide’s Bryce Gibbs and Eagles Riley Knight, Jimmy Toumpas and Tyson Stengle headline the list of those with recent AFL experience while the two latest Magarey Medallists – Campbell Combe and Luke Partington – have also been named.
There will be no shortage of leadership candidates, with seven current SANFL captains listed, including Sutcliffe, Luke Thompson (Eagles), Chris Curran and Max Proud (Glenelg), Alex Spina (North), James Battersby (Sturt) and Matthew Nunn (Norwood).
Knoll will line up for the State team again after featuring in 2019 where he won the Fos Williams Medal as the SANFL’s best player, while Nunn will feature for the very first time.
State coach Jade Sheedy says he is pleased with the depth and balance of his squad, indicating that players could still be added should their form warrant selection.
“I’m very pleased. It’s very deep and we feel we have got a really good balance as well,’’ Sheedy said.
‘’We can still add to the squad as well because there are a couple more games left before we play. We will keep tracking players and continue to have a look at who else is out there.’’
Training will begin at Thebarton Oval on Tuesday night, with the match now confirmed as the curtain-raiser to the Port Adelaide v Western Bulldogs match at Adelaide Oval.
A start time for the contest against the Sandgropers, who won the last meeting at Adelaide Oval in 2018, is still to be confirmed.