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The latest AFL North Melbourne Kangaroos news articles, video links, AFL Ladder and more.



Beginnings: North Melbourne Football Club, nicknamed The Kangaroos, is the fourth oldest Australian rules football club in the AFL and is one of the oldest sporting clubs in Australia and the world. It is based at the Arden Street Oval in the inner Melbourne suburb of North Melbourne.

Records:
  • * Record Attendance: 72,216 at the MCG in round 9, 20 May 1994
  • * Most Games: Wayne Schimmelbusch 306 (1973-87)
  • * Most Goals: 671 Wayne Carey (1989-2001)
  • * Biggest finals crowd: 113,839 for the 1974 grand final at the MCG
Full Ladder Team P W L D FOR AGNST % PTS
8 North Melbourne 22 12 10 0 1956 1859 105.2 48

Hard at it

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North speedster Shaun Atley says a great mix of youth and experience in the North Melbourne line up will ensure the Roos are competitive in 2017.

With 11 new players joining the club in the off-season, Atley said training remained at a high standard, with the playing group knowing there were no guarantees about who lines up in the royal blue and white in round one.

“I guess now there is a lot more youth here, so it just gives these guys an opportunity,” Atley told the RSN Breakfast Club.

“Training has been very competitive so far, I think deep down blokes know there are spots there and they have the chance to take them.”

And while there has been plenty of new faces in the changerooms, Atley said he was confident North fans would like what they see this year.

“We’ve still got a certain number of 100, 150, 200 game players here. You look at the Bulldogs last year with their young list...


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Ready to return

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Ben Brown, Majak Daw, Todd Goldstein, Ben Jacobs, Daniel Nielson, draftee Jy Simpkin and Sam Wright are all in contention for game time during the pre-season competition as they near full fitness.

Scott Thompson is the closest to a return and may yet line up in North’s City vs. Country intra-club match on Friday afternoon.

Meanwhile, rookie Oscar Junker will miss between three and four months of football after breaking his tibia during Saturday’s practice match against Werribee.

He joins Jed Anderson on the sidelines, with the small forward recovering from his recent shoulder surgery.

The number 3 said the injury occurred during a tackling drill last week, but Anderson is confident of a speedy return.

“I’ve tackled Ed Vickers-Willis and taken him to ground and his elbow has landed straight on my AC joint (in the shoulder), rupturing the joint and a couple of ligaments that are in there,”...


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Best on wheels

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North Melbourne’s major partner Mazda has taken home a major automotive industry award.

The brand new Mazda CX-9 has been named 2017 Wheels Car of the Year, the eighth time Mazda has won this prestigious award.

Roos’ Managing Director and CEO Carl Dilena congratulated the club’s long term major partner on the win.

“We’re extremely proud to have such a loyal and proud partner as part of the North Melbourne team and we’re really excited about this big win for Mazda,” Dilena said.

“As a CX-9 driver myself, I can certainly see why this car was named the best of the best. It’s a superb car to drive and very deserving of this recognition.”

Mazda Australia Managing Director, Martin Benders, said: “From initial planning to its arrival on the showroom floor we were confident that the brand new Mazda CX-9 would appeal to family-size SUV buyers and be a success.

“To win (Wheels Car of the Year)...


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Thompson on the mend

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North defender Scott Thompson says he’s looking forward to making his return to competitive action in the coming weeks.

The All-Australian has been sidelined after a minor procedure to repair his adductor and is keen to get game-time under his belt before the season kicks off in late March.

“I’ve really ramped us the last couple of weeks,” Thompson told Channel 10 on Monday.

“I don’t miss games, and I don’t normally get injured, so it’s a bit different for me.

“I’ve been able to keep my running up a fair bit, now it’s more about getting game practice in and I’ll be fine.”

With the JLT Community Series looming large, Thompson is confident he’ll play a part.

“I’m sure the physios and docs are not really liking me at the moment, because I just want to get out there and play.”

Thompson has been keeping a close eye on his teammates, and expects a strong showing from North's defenders in...


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McKay turning heads

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PRESS PLAY above to watch the Ben McKay update.

199-centimetre big man Ben McKay is turning heads at Arden Street.

The key-forward booted three goals and took several strong marks in an impressive performance during the Roos' practice match against Werribee last Saturday.

“It will definitely bring confidence for the next game,” McKay told NMFC.com.au.

“I’ve just got to keep building up, working on it and taking it into next week.”

McKay is keen to make the most of his opportunities in the coming weeks.

“It’s unfortunate we’ve got a few injuries at the moment, but you’ve got to keep worrying about your game and be confident,” he said. 

“Hopefully, fingers crossed, I’ll keep performing over the next couple of weeks and get an opportunity.”

The defensive side of McKay’s game is arguably just as important as the big marks and goals.

“Even though you are 200 centimetres, you’ve still...


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AFL: Burning up the track

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Who's burning?
Midfielder/forward Riley Knight has turned plenty of heads with his performances on the training track over the summer. He took out the Crows' first 2km time trial as he attempts to force his way into the club's best 22. "His running patterns and his approach to pre-season in terms of his fitness look great," Crows defender Rory Laird said. "He's had a bad run with injuries previously so it's great he's been able to stay out on the track. There's been a few others, too. Curtly Hampton has been going really well, Cam Ellis-Yolmen's training really well, too." Hampton, who played the majority of his football with Greater Western Sydney across the half-back line, is aiming to move into the midfield. Ellis-Yolmen spent two weeks training in the US during the off-season to build up his fitness base. 

Who's not?
A hamstring injury has slowed down midfield gun Brad Crouch's...


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Photos: Practice Match

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Check out all the best photos from North's practice match with Werribee on Saturday.

RELATED: McKay's big day | Hrovat's immediate impact

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Jack Ziebell leads out his teammates.

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Lachlan Hansen flies for the mark.

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Ben Cunnington tries to get clear.

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Kayne Turner takes a strong mark.

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Shaun Higgins on the run. 

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Aaron Mullett takes a breather.

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The heat taking its toll on Ed Vickers-Willis. 

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Ryan Clarke cools down.

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Ben Cunnington pays close attention.

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Brad Scott addresses the team.

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Kayne Turner kicks inside 50.

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Nathan Hrovat on the burst.

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Braydon Preuss climbs over the pack.

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Jamie Macmillan searches for a target.

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Ed Vickers-Willis kicks downfield.

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Nick Larkey up in the ruck.

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Mitch Hibberd at the final change.

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Marley Williams playing in the North colours for the first time.

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Brad Scott talks to his players.

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Be A Shinboner.

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Nick Larkey through the middle of the ground. 

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McKay's big day

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PRESS PLAY above to watch the match highlights.

North Melbourne’s future was on show at Arden Street on Saturday with highly-rated youngster Ben McKay impressing in a practice match against Werribee at Arden Street.

The 200cm forward booted three goals, but could have had up to seven, if not for some inaccurate kicking.

Using a combination of athleticism and height, McKay dominated and impressed his teammates.

“Yeah Benny’s been really good especially in training the last couple of weeks,” Jarrad Waite told NMFC.com.au.

“He’s just really contesting well in the air, he’s got a god set of hands as well … just a real big body … he’s put a bit of size on over the last couple of years.”

Waite senses there’ll be plenty of opportunities for the exciting 19-year-old.

“He’s going to be really important for us this year,” Waite added.

Also impressing in the searing heat was Nathan Hrovat -...


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Hrovat's immediate impact

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PRESS PLAY above to watch the practice match highlights.

North Melbourne recruit Nathan Hrovat has shown he can make an impact for the new-look Roos this year after booting four goals in the club's practice match with Werribee's VFL side.

The former Bulldog, who crossed to Arden Street during last year's trade period, was dynamic for the Roos in a half-forward role in their convincing win over Werribee.

His effort in the third term – when he kicked three majors – was especially eye-catching, and included a smart goal after roving a marking contest and also a brilliant left-foot snap that sailed through.

The 22-year-old said he was pleased to show his wares early in his time at the club.

"It was good to get the first scratch match out of the way and I was lucky enough to get on the end of a few," he said on Saturday.

"The team's travelling well and we've had a really good...


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30,000 in record time

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North has smashed yet another membership milestone with 30,000 members joining in record time.

Last year the club signed more than 45,000 members for the first time in its history and is well on the way to surpassing the mark in 2017.

With a little more than two weeks until the Roos open their pre-season campaign against Sydney in the JLT Community Series, the club is well positioned to post another fantastic result off the field according to CEO & Managing Director Carl Dilena.

“We’re genuinely thrilled by the show of support from our loyal members and supporters who have helped us achieve this milestone so early,” Dilena said.

“Incredibly, there are still about 18,000 members who haven’t renewed from 2016, so we’d encourage these supporters to get on board before Round 1 and make the most of the benefits.

“With the excitement of our match on Good Friday and another strong schedule...


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Grand Final replay

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Photo: Melbourne University Women's Football Club (Facebook page)

Two of Victoria's best women's teams will battle it out later this month at Arden Street.

A North Melbourne team made up of players from VFL Women’s grand finalist Melbourne University Women’s Football Club and selected players from Tasmania, will take on reigning VFL Women’s premiers Darebin on February 26.

The match will take place following the JLT Community Series clash between North and Hawthorn at Arden Street.

North Football Operations Manager Laura Kane said she expected both women’s teams to be super competitive.

“With 17 players taking part in the AFLW competition, the next tier of Melbourne Uni players will still want to make amends for losing last year’s Grand Final, and as both teams play in round one of the VFL Women’s competition in May, everyone will be wanting to make their mark and really put in a...


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AFL: 2017 Draft pool

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Each year the NAB AFL Academy squad gives a snapshot of the wider draft pool. 

This year's level two group has spent the past two weeks in America with new head coach Luke Power, being put through a challenging and demanding high performance training camp. 

The 36 players, plus four Irish hopefuls, trained at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, where they were hit with heavy conditioning work, several main training days, and lived like professional athletes.

The 13 clubs that sent recruiters to the US to observe the tour also interviewed every prospect.  

It is a long time until November's NAB AFL Draft, and many things will evolve and develop across the season. But here is an early take on the look of the 2017 draft pool and how it might shape up. 

Is it a better draft than last year?

It's a different looking group to the 2016 crop, which was dominated at the top by midfielders...


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Arden sold out

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AFL 2016 Training - North Melbourne 231216

“It’s an exciting prospect to be playing on a ground with so much history."

North Melbourne’s historic pre-season clash at Arden Street is a sell-out.

Tickets for club members went on sale yesterday, while a limited number of remaining tickets for the JLT Community Series match went on sale to the general public on Wednesday morning and were quickly snapped up.

JLT Community Series Arden Street Match Information

North Managing Director and CEO Carl Dilena said there was plenty of excitement in the air as the game drew closer.

“Everyone at North has circled February 26 in their calendar and we can’t wait for this big day to come around,” Dilena said.

“It’s an exciting prospect to be playing on a ground with so much history.

“We’re working closely with the AFL to prepare for this match and looking forward to making it a day to remember for those who were able to secure a...


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Higgins taking no chances

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January 31, 2017: Higgins update Shaun Higgins speaks with NMFC.com.au about his injury-riddled 2016, an exciting preseason and his hopes for 2017.

There’s always uncertainty in the AFL and that’s why players are encouraged to ‘take their opportunities’ whenever they arise. Whether you’re a first-year player or seasoned veteran, the advice is equally relevant – just ask Shaun Higgins.

“For me personally, getting towards the end of my career, you take every year playing as if this could be the last opportunity to play finals footy,” he told NMFC.com.au.

This time last year, the 28-year-old was North’s best pre-season performer and looked headed for a career season, but just seven games in, he tore his meniscus. It proved to Higgins once again that anything can happen and you should take nothing for granted.

Even when he eventually returned some 16-weeks later, the comeback was...


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AFL: The veterans

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Scott Thompson has been on a modified program as he prepares for his 17th AFL campaign. Thompson, who turns 34 in March, suffered a minor shoulder injury last week and will be out of contact work for a fortnight. Thompson played 22 out of a possible 24 games last season, but faces a battle to regain his spot in the Crows' best 22 as they look to add more pace to the midfield. The veteran of 307 games is expected to be available for the JLT Community Series. Champion goalsneak Eddie Betts has returned in great nick and shows no signs of slowing down. The 30-year-old recently signed a three-year deal to stay at the Crows until the end of 2020. Midfielder Richard Douglas, who turns 30 in February, is likely to become a utility player this season. One of just seven Crows to play every game last year, Douglas will spend time again in the forward line, but has also been training with the...


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Vale Darryl Sutton

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North Melbourne is mourning the passing of one of its 1977 premiership heroes, Darryl Sutton.

The man affectionately known as ‘Nose’, passed away on Saturday, aged 64.

The Tasmanian played 91 games for North Melbourne between 1973 and 1980, including playing in both the drawn 1977 Grand Final and Grand Final Replay.

Sutton also played for Richmond and Sydney in the latter stages of his career.

North premiership teammate Peter ‘Crackers’ Keenan described Sutton as a “game changer”.

“In 1976 we beat Carlton by a point out at Waverley in a Preliminary Final and wouldn’t have done it but for ‘Nose’ (Sutton) kicking five goals,” Keenan told The Herald Sun.

“He was just one of those players who could turn it on. And a good bloke to boot.”

AFL Hall of Famer, Peter Hudson, also paid tribute to Sutton.

“I thought he was a fantastic player, he was a star of our side,” Hudson told Tasmania’s...


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Ziebell: Be a Shinboner

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"When they pull on the blue and white jumper we expect them to do everything a Shinboner would do." Photo: Hamish Blair, Herald Sun Sport.

Jack Ziebell is on a mission. As North’s new captain, the soon to be 26-year-old wants all the players at Arden Street, new and old, to adhere to a strict standard.

With 11 new faces this season, he knows it’s going to be a learning process for some.

“We have brought back the Shinboner … for us as a leadership group and a captain, it’s important that we teach these new guys what it is to be a Shinboner, and how they now are representing all the people that have gone before them,” Ziebell told The Herald Sun.

“Because when they pull on the blue and white jumper we expect them to do everything a Shinboner would do.

“And if we have 22 Shinboners playing that role, we are going to be a bloody hard side to beat.

“From my point of view a Shinboner is...


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Hansen's new start

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Lachlan Hansen hopes to make a "fresh start" this year after a 2016 season when little went right for him.

Hansen was a long-time senior regular heading into last year, but following another injury-interrupted pre-season he was overlooked for North Melbourne's round one game against Adelaide despite being fit to play.

The key defender was a late inclusion for the Kangaroos' round two clash with the Brisbane Lions when Scott Thompson withdrew with soreness, but was dropped the following week and did not return to the senior team until round 21.

During his extended stint in the VFL, Hansen's attempts to earn a recall were hampered by two bouts of concussion – the most serious caused by an ugly off-the-ball bump that sidelined him for three weeks – and some minor niggles that meant he never played more than three games in a row, making it hard for him to find consistent form.

North's...


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Roos, Hawks do battle

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North captain Jack Ziebell, former Australian test skipper Ricky Ponting and games record-holder Brent Harvey will join a star-studded lineup for Friday night’s ‘Biggest Game of Cricket’.

The Roos’ side will take on Hawthorn in the T20 Charity cricket match at Launceston’s UTAS Stadium, with funds from the event donated to the Ponting Foundation.

The 14-man North lineup features five current players (Ziebell, Sam Durdin, Nathan Hrovat, Lindsay Thomas and Kayne Turner), Australian fast-bowler Peter Siddle and champions Glenn Archer, Brent Harvey and Anthony Stevens.

Hawthorn’s team will be captained by former Australian swing bowler Damien Fleming, with Jarryd Roughead, Luke Hodge and Alastair Clarkson all in action.

The match will be live-streamed on cricket.com.au from 6.45pm AEDT tonight, with NMFC.com.au providing updates via Instagram and Twitter.

North squad

Ricky Ponting...


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North keys on mend

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"He's (Majak Daw) been at the club doing a fair bit of training recently, so I don't think it will set him back a whole lot."

North Melbourne skipper Jack Ziebell concedes injuries to tall forwards Majak Daw and Ben Brown aren't ideal but remains hopeful the pair will be ready to play in the AFL pre-season competition.

North's key forward stocks took a hit in recent weeks with Daw and Brown undergoing knee operations.

After surgery in the second week of January, Daw is expected to return to full pre-season training in a month, while Brown is set to miss a fortnight after being operated on last week.

"It's not ideal but, in saying that, Benny is a pretty quick turnaround," Ziebell said.

"He won't miss a whole lot, which is good. We'll have him back training really soon and getting the work that he needs too.

"Majak's tracking really well (too). He's been at the club doing a fair bit...


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