Hanson storms into AFL draft contention

INTEREST in Western Storm midfielder Matt Hanson is growing before the AFL national draft later in the year.

INTEREST in Western Storm midfielder Matt Hanson is growing before the AFL national draft later in the year.

INTEREST in Western Storm midfielder Matt Hanson is growing before the AFL national draft later in the year.

Hanson's Melbourne-based manager Ryan Kogelman said yesterday several AFL clubs were showing interest in the 19-year-old.

"He is well and truly on their radar and I think we'll hear more of him via the draft or the rookie draft," he said.

"Three or four clubs have been in touch me with me about Matt."

Hanson is one of five Tasmanians who have been invited to attend the Victorian AFL Draft Combine to be held at Etihad Stadium in October when prospective draftees are put through their paces ahead of the national draft on November 27.

Kogelman said Hanson's star had risen since he became a premiership player with South Launceston last year, his form in two Foxtel Cup games this season and his representative game against the NEAFL.

Hanson, who added 10 kilograms to his body shape over summer, has enjoyed a stellar season in the State League and shares the lead in the RACT Insurance Player of the Year Award.

"Matt is a fantastic kid who deserves everything that comes his way," Kogelman said.

Hanson was overlooked in last year's draft but indications are he will be in serious contention in November.

His chances were further improved yesterday when he was one of 14 players from around Australia listed on the AFL website under a heading "hidden draft gems of the state leagues."

His Western Storm teammate Bart McCulloch was the only other Tasmanian who made the 14-player list.

Hanson will be joined at Etihad Stadium in October by Burnie's Caleb Hislop and Glenorchy teammates Josh Watts and Matthew Rainbird.

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