Phoenix Gothard by no means thought he’d be drafted within the first spherical, not to mention at decide 12 within the 2023 AFL draft.
However for the new GWS Giants recruit, he acquired the shock of a lifetime on Monday night time.
In attendance on the draft occasion at Marvel Stadium in Melbourne merely as a visitor of greatest good friend and eventual No.11 decide, Geelong recruit Connor O’Sullivan, Gothard was surprised when his title was learn out one decide after his mate.
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Surrounded by his associates, who have been additionally visitors of O’Sullivan, Gothard was rapidly mobbed and had his Murray Bushrangers polo ripped off by his ecstatic mates in a draft celebration for the ages.
Gothard ultimately needed to borrow O’Sullivan’s as he walked up on to the stage to satisfy former Giants skipper Phil Davis.
Gothard and his mates continued to leap round in delight, effectively after AFL CEO Andrew Dillon learn out the 18-year-old’s title.
Accepting his jumper from Davis, Gothard was extraordinarily emotional on stage, together with his mom and sister additionally last-minute invitees to the occasion.
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His greatest good friend, Geelong’s latest key defender O’Sullivan, was even seen ditching Cats legend, four-time premiership champion Joel Selwood, proper after being drafted, to hurry over and have fun Gothard’s shock choice upon listening to his title on the audio system.
Giants recruiting supervisor Adrian Caruso praised Gothard, who was predicted to go as little as decide 30 by some draft specialists, saying the membership is worked up to see what tips he can carry on area.
“Phoenix is a small ahead that we really feel is a good match for us,” Caruso mentioned by way of the Giants web site on Monday night time.
“He performs in a method that fits the fashion we now have adopted over the previous 12 months, and he has attributes to succeed on the subsequent degree.
“Given it was his first yr in this system this yr we really feel he’ll go to a different degree when in a full-time setting.
“He is a participant of expertise within the entrance half, he can dazzle and weave his method out of hassle in addition to anybody.”