Dandenong Stingrays talent Henry Hustwaite has emerged as a rare breed onballer ahead of the National Draft thanks to a timeline growth spurt that now sees the versatile midfielder-defender hybrid standing at 195cm tall.

The Rosebud native was already looming as a formidable utility prospect among the class of 2022 and hasn't lost his clean touch and agility as a result of his rise in height, placing Hustwaite in calculations as a potential first-round selection.

The mixture of his key-position-like build, efficiency with the Sherrin and lacking strength places Hustwaite far from the norm of the new-age onballer, with the versatile ball-winner set to offer any club that rolls the dice on his name a newfound edge.

What is also enticing from Hustwaite's capabilities is his ability to effortlessly switch to the defensive third, mounting a case as one of the best two-way utilities ahead of the draft.

Hustwaite can make himself accountable for his direct opponent, impact the aerial ball and offer surgeon-like ball movement from defence while also knowing how to find his own ball.

What also excites is Hustwaite's composure under pressure, whether that be at the coalface in midfield or deep in defence against a fleet of opposing forwards.

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He averaged 22.7 disposals playing predominantly through the midfield for Dandenong, while his ability to share roles for Vic Country saw Hustwaite flourish in the National Championships this season.

You can expect Sydney, who enter the draft at Pick 14, to show some consideration toward Hustwaite, while GWS (Pick 15 and 18) and Collingwood (Pick 16) may also be in contention before the Swans' next selection at 17th overall.

Should he slide on draft night, the Bombers at Pick 22 are sure to be waiting.

State: Victoria Country
State League Club: Dandenong Stingrays
Community Club: Rosebud
Date of Birth: 20/07/04
Height: 195cm
Weight: 82kg


Ball Use
Defensive Prowess



Draft Range

Mid-Late First Round

Potential Landing Spots

Sydney (Pick 14, 17), GWS (Pick 15, 18), Collingwood (Pick 16), Essendon (Pick 22)

AFL Comparisons

Nick Blakey
Scott Pendlebury
Jack Lukosius

Expert comments

"A left-footed tall defender or midfielder who is extremely composed with the ball and an efficient user by hand and foot. Has good vision and footy nous and had a remarkably consistent season at club and representative level." - Kevin Sheehan