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Charlie tipped to make a splash

Dinny Navaratnam for  March 6, 2018 11:29 AM

Ask The Coach | Brendon Bolton Carlton coach Brendon Bolton answers the fans' questions in Ask The Coach.

CHARLIE Curnow's potential has been recognised by his peers, with the versatile Carlton tall voted the player most likely to have a breakout 2018 and join the elite category.

Curnow garnered 22 per cent of the votes, ahead of Greater Western Sydney onballer Jacob Hopper (13 per cent) and high-flying Adelaide forward Mitch McGovern (11 per cent).

Brisbane bookends Eric Hipwood and Harris Andrews rounded out the top five.

The results are part of the Players' Top 50 poll, which has been conducted annually for the past five years.

Curnow, 21, was drafted with the No.12 selection in 2015.

After six games in his debut year, he played all but one match last season.

His huge tank means he can run through the midfield, as Blues coach Brendon Bolton told would happen at stages this season, but Curnow is as imposing a young forward as there is in the competition.

He averaged 1.7 contested marks per game last year to rank equal-18th, along with teammate Alex Silvagni. 

AFL 2018 JLT Community Series - Carlton v St Kilda
Charlie Curnow is destined for big things in 2018, according to his peers. (Photo: AFL Media)

Which player will make the leap to stardom in 2018?

Player Team Votes
Charlie Curnow CARL 22 per cent
Jacob Hopper GWS 13 per cent
Mitch McGovern ADEL 11 per cent
Eric Hipwood BL 8 per cent
Harris Andrews BL 7 per cent

Hopper cemented himself in the Giants' line-up in 2017 despite being in just his second season. Finger and ankle injuries forced him to the sidelines for part of the year, but he returned a month before the finals began, and was selected for the rest of the campaign.

McGovern was highly sought-after on the trade market before the Crows signed him for a further three years last August, with his exceptional aerial abilities enticing opposition clubs.

Hipwood is one of the most exciting young talents in the AFL, while Andrews has already established himself as a leader at the Lions and looms as one of the best defenders in the competition over the next decade.