AFL mid-season draft: Ex-Saint Matt Parker threw a lifeline through Richmond

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Delisted St Kilda forward Matt Parker gets a lifeline from Richmond Tigers in AFL mid-season

Former high-flying St Kilda striker Matt Parker has been thrown to an AFL lifeline by Prime Minister Richmond.

Parker was selected by the Tigers in Wednesday night’s AFL’s mid-season rookie draft after being eliminated by the Saints in late 2020.

The 25-year-old played 19 games at St Kilda, 17 of them in 2019, but only two last year when the Saints made it to the final for the first time since 2011.

Parker played in Western Australia this year with South Fremantle.

Richmond’s pick in the 2019 midseason draw, Marlion Pickett was also picked from the same WAFL club and played in the Tigers’ last two premierships.

But other former AFL players Tyson Stengle (Richmond, Adelaide) and Nathan Freeman (Collingwood, St Kilda) missed out on the roster.

Basement residents North Melbourne bolstered their key position by taking 202cm Jacob Edwards ruck-forward from NAB League club Sandringham Dragons with the top pick in the draft.

The 18-year-old was overlooked in last year’s national roster but has been touted for some time as a likely mid-season recruit, even though he’s still completing high school.

‘[On Tuesday night] I had a Zoom conversation with Noord and [coach] David Noble and was lucky enough to say good wishes that they will pick me up,” Edwards told AFL Media.

“The past few months have been pretty crazy, all these media calls and people texting me, but it’s something I’ve got a handle on now.”

A number of clubs secured great depth in the draft, with Gold Coast managing to fill the position of key ruckman Jarrod Witts, who will be out for the rest of the season after breaking his ACL with Ned Moyle.

Carlton (Alex Mirkov), Sydney (Lachlan McAndrew) and Brisbane Lions (Kalin Lane) also picked up ruckmen.

AFL HALF SEASON DESIGNONT

1. Jacob Edwards (North Melbourne)

2. Jai Newcombe (Hawthorn)

3. Ashley Johnson (Collingwood)

4. Patrick Parnell (Adelaide)

5. Ned Moyle (Gold Coast)

6. Alex Mirkov (Carlton)

7. Max Heath (St Kilda)

8. James Peatling (GWS)

9. Sam Durham (Essendon)

10. Matthew Parker (Richmond)

11. Will Collins (West Coast)

12. Lachlan McAndrew (Sydney)

13. Jed McEntee (Port Adelaide)

14. Kalin Lane (Brisbane Lions)

15. Kye Declase (Melbourne)

16. Charlie Ham (North Melbourne)

17. Jackson Callow (Hawthorn)

18. Aiden Begg (Collingwood)

19. Pass (Gold Coast)

20. Jordan Boyd (Carlton)

21. Cooper Sharman (St Kilda)

22. Pass (Essendon)

23. Connor West (West Coast)

24. Daniel Turner (Melbourne)

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