NORTH Ballarat Rooster Dean Towers set an AFL Combine record for the standing vertical jump on day one of testing at Etihad Stadium.
Towers leapt 85 centimetres, eclipsing the long-standing 83cm draft camp record set by Hawthorn and Fremantle defender Trent Croad in 1997.
AFL talent manager Kevin Sheehan confirmed Towers’ result last night via social networking site Twitter.
West Coast Eagle Nic Naitanui (2008) and Brisbane Lion Elliott Yeo (2011) had come closest to breaking Croad’s record in the past five years with standing vertical jumps of 78cm.
Three other invitees, including American Eric Wallace also jumped 80cm or higher yesterday.
Etihad stadium hosted 114 AFL hopefuls and many club coaches and scouts, watching and scrutinising the young players’ athletic abilities.
Seven North Ballarat Rebels were also in the mix in the combine that started yesterday running through until Friday.
North Ballarat Rebels regional manager Phil Partington said the boys had a busy day yesterday, with measurements, personality tests and half the group enduring a psychomotor test.
“The boys are still getting used to the environment and having AFL personnel constantly around,” Partington said.
He said today would also be full on, with participants being examined by physios and doctors, and their medical histories examined.
“Some will be asked to hop on a massage table for further body analysis.”
Today will include a tough physical activities day for the players, with sprints and agility assessed around midday, and the repeat sprints later in the afternoon.
“It will take a lot out of their body, so we’ll make sure they’re rested up,” Partington said.
The players are constantly watched.
“They’re always being judged by someone. They’re identifiable with their draft combine outfit as well,” he said.
“It’s the first time a lot of them will be scrutinised like this, as person and a footballer as well.”
Many boys started interviewing with AFL clubs yesterday and will continue the interviewing process throughout the week.
Six more North Ballarat Rebels will also be screened on Sunday, as part of the AFL state draft combine.