No change to father-son bidding system for 2014

Darcy Moore may get to Collingwood for a bargain price. Photo: Joe Armao
Darcy Moore may get to Collingwood for a bargain price. Photo: Joe Armao

Sydney will be able to draft highly rated midfielder Isaac Heeney with a late first-round pick this year, with the AFL not ready to introduce its revamped bidding system.

Collingwood may also secure father-son draftee Darcy Moore for a bargain price, with the athletic key-position prospect and Heeney considered top-five prospects by many clubs.

The league is still in the process of examining and testing potential new bidding systems, to ensure clubs pay a fair price for top-line players drafted from the northern academies or as father-son selections, but has run out of time to introduce anything new this year with its next working group meeting not scheduled until next month.

Should it settle on a new system it would have plenty of time to introduce it in time for the 2015 draft, giving clubs ample opportunity to prepare for the changes.

Under a potential new model presented to clubs earlier this month, every pick in the draft would be assigned a certain number of points.

Should a club match a bid for one of its father-son or academy players, it would have to provide enough points to match the bid, rather than do so with just one pick. Subtracting points from a later draft pick to match the bid would result in that pick being moved further down the draft order.

A discount could also be applied, given the hefty investment the Swans - as well as the Brisbane Lions, Gold Coast and Greater Western Sydney - have made in their academies. Those clubs that run father-son academies may also push for a discount.

But the league is still testing that system out on previous drafts, and will not change the current bidding process at all if it cannot come up with a better version.

Under the present system, clubs must use their next available choice in the draft to match a bid for one of their nominated players. For instance, North Melbourne used pick eight in the 2013 draft to secure Luke McDonald, matching West Coast's bid of pick six.

Bidding under the proposed new format could take place on draft day rather than the first day of the trade period, as it is now, giving clubs more time to assess the nominated players and decide which pick, if any, to bid for them.

This story No change to father-son bidding system for 2014 first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.