Crows recruit Matt Crouch gains AFL Rising Star nomination

MATT Crouch’s immediate impact with the Adelaide Crows has been reinforced with an AFL Rising Star nomination.

Crouch got the nod for his performance in his third AFL appearance, a 65-point win over Greater Western Sydney on Sunday.

The Ballarat youngster, who turned 19 on Monday, follows in the footsteps of his older brother and Adelaide teammate Brad as a candidate for the award.

Brad Crouch was the rising star nominee in round 14 last year and went on to be runner-up overall to Gold Coast’s Jaeger O’Meara.

Matt Crouch needed only three quarters against the Giants to become a nominee.

He had 28 possessions before being substituted out at three-quarter time with hamstring cramp.

Adelaide coach Brenton Sanderson praised Crouch for his ability to adapt to AFL conditions straight away. 

“He has a real hunger to learn more about the game and his role in the team,” Sanderson said.

“He is also a fierce competitor, who makes great decisions under immense pressure,” he said.

Recruited from North Ballarat Rebels and Central Highlands Football League club Beaufort, Crouch was the Crows’ first selection at pick 23 in last year’s AFL national draft.

Adelaide traded Bernie Vince to Melbourne to secure the draft pick.

Sunday’s game was Crouch’s third for the Crows. He is already averaging 23 disposals an outing.

“Individually I thought I played OK and hopefully I can continue to be consistent over the next couple of weeks,” Crouch told afl.com.au. “It’s been good, but I think I’ve still got a lot of work to do defensively and hopefully I can keep improving in that area.

“I’ve been pretty happy, but hopefully I can keep going,” Crouch said. 

The Crouch brothers are yet to play an AFL match together.

Matt debuted in round three after Brad broke a leg in round two.

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