BOYD WOODCOCK will make his AFL debut on Monday night against the Western Bulldogs, making him the 1588th player to make a senior appearance for Port Adelaide since 1870.
The diminutive forward is sure to stand out with his bleach-blonde hair and bright boots, but he has been standing out on the track for different reasons in 2020.
Initially selected at pick 76 in the 2018 AFL National Draft, having been part of the North Adelaide SANFL premiership team, Woodock had a solid season in which he averaged 17 disposals and booted 22 goals in 21 SANFL games for Port Adelaide.
Despite that he was delisted alongside Riley Grundy at the end of 2019 then re-claimed as a rookie.
His clean hands, good decision making and eye for goal have always been there but this year he has added to his running capacity, giving him the ability to run through the midfield as well.
But who is Boyd Woodcock?
Originally from the Yorke Peninsula, Woodcock became the first ever AFL draftee from the Bute Paskeville Bullants when he was selected by Port Adelaide.
The 20-year-old moved to Adelaide at age 14 to enhance his chances of achieving his AFL dream and went to school at Blackfriars Priory School at Prospect.
He joined junior football club Broadview, where he played with now Power teammate Connor Rozee in an under 15 Premiership.
The pair continued as teammates and friends at North Adelaide, where Woodcock starred in the under 18 competition, averaging 31 touches, 16 contested possessions and nine clearances per game.
He won the 2017 McCallum Tomkins Medal as the best player in the SANFL under-18 competition.
While Woodcock’s 2018 national championship was quiet, he returned to Adelaide with renewed belief, and forced his way into North Adelaide’s senior side where he played nine league games and went on to join Rozee in winning the 2018 SANFL premiership with the Roosters.
The achievement was extra special for Woodcock who has been a Roosters member since birth.
Former Power player Josh Carr was Woodcock’s coach at North and he played him as an antagonising small forward.
Woodcock didn’t let him down, getting under the skin of opponents, just as Carr did during his career, and then kicking eight goals in his four finals, including three in the Grand Final.
At the state draft combine, Woodcock placed second in the agility test behind former Port rookie Kai Pudney, and second in the standing vertical jump.
It’s been a meteoric rise for the NBA-loving former junior basketballer and cricketer, and he is now dreaming of becoming a 200-game player for Port Adelaide, starting with his debut against the Bulldogs on Monday night.
Junior Club: Bute Paskeville
Recruited from: North Adelaide (SANFL)
SANFL games: 30 / 9 at North Adelaide in 2018
SANFL goals: 38 /16 at North Adelaide in 2018