HAWTHORN youngster James Worpel won plenty of admirers for his attack on the ball against Geelong skipper Joe Selwood on Saturday and it’s helped him claim the round 21 Rising Star nomination as well.
The 19-year-old gathered 23 possessions and eight tackles in the Hawks’ 11-point win in the MCG clash, with the Geelong Falcons product’s best moment coming in the third term when he unflinchingly won a hard ball against Selwood – with the rivals coming from different directions – that set up a Jack Gunston major.
Worpel’s well-rounded performance came after kicking the match-winner against Essendon the previous round and 32 disposals in the round 18 victory over Carlton.
Snared with Hawthorn’s first selection at last year’s National Draft, number 45 overall, Worpel has played seven games since making his AFL debut against St Kilda in round six.
Worpel has averaged 16.7 touches, 5.4 score involvements and 4.1 tackles per game, and ranks in the top five among rising stars for inside 50s, clearances, score involvements, goal assists and centre clearances.