Champion Data's list of 'elite' player rankings has been revealed at the midway point of the 2023 AFL season, with some surprising inclusions and exclusions arising from the list.
According to the AFL statisticians, the Western Bulldogs have the most elite players in the competition, with Bailey Dale (general defender), Caleb Daniel (mid-forward), Jack Macrae (mid-forward), Marcus Bontempelli (midfielder), Tim English (ruck) and Tom Liberatore (midfielder) seen to be in the top echelon.
Among the surprising inclusions are Gold Coast's Nick Holman and North Melbourne ruckman Todd Goldstein, while Richmond champion Dustin Martin has edged out new teammates Tim Taranto and Jacob Hopper for an elite ranking.
Others to miss out on a selection were 2022 All-Australians Tom Stewart, Steven May, Brayden Maynard, Touk Miller, Callum Mills, Patrick Cripps, Max Gawn, Lachie Neale, Tyson Stengle, Mark Blicavs and Andrew Brayshaw.
Champion Data's rankings from the opening 11 rounds of the year are decided through its AFL Player Ratings system, with a player's position a relevant factor in being ranked as elite.
Players are also assessed on how and where they win the ball as well as how they use the ball in the ratings, with players also needing to have played in at least six matches in 2023 by Round 11.
Champion Data's 2023 elite player rankings (via The Herald Sun)
Izak Rankine (general forward)
James Sicily (key defender)
Todd Goldstein (ruck)