We've compiled the lists for a hypothetical 2023 AFL match between Victoria and 'The Rest' of Australia to see how the best of each looks on paper.

Some of the many snubs of this year's All-Australian team finally receive their plaudits with selection in this experiment, while some members make this team in an adjusted role to fit in the fringe players.

This piece will compare the positional groups of each side, making judgements on superiority where possible, but leaving the end result up for debate.

Here are what the two sides could look like...


1. Defenders

We get a riveting key defensive battle with Jacob Weitering & Darcy Moore at one end and Harris Andrews & Sam Taylor at the other.

Taylor, falling about a game short of eligibility for the All-Australian side this year, makes our interstate team and forms one half of perhaps the most dominant key-intercepting duo possible in today's game.

Both are roughly 200cm, near-100kg bodies who read the play like no other and are far more likely to win the ball back than be beaten one-on-one.

This duo gets the edge over Weitering and Moore who, while dominant in their own right, suffered some inconsistency in 2023 due to poor team performance or opposition exploitation tactics.

The surrounding interceptors are Callum Wilkie and James Sicily for Vic, while Luke Ryan and Nick Blakey help the interstaters.

Wilkie and Ryan both hold the fort with strength in marking contests while Sicily and Blakey provide two different offensive weapons; Blakey's charging run and Sicily's lethal leg.

The edge here goes to Victoria, given the superior combined intercepting ability and simultaneous offensive power provided with Sicily's kicking.

Finally, Nick Daicos and Jack Sinclair form an elite half-back running duo for Vic against Dan Houston and Jordan Dawson.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 30: Nick Daicos of the Magpies celebrates a goal with teammates Beau McCreery and Jack Crisp of the Magpies during the 2023 AFL Grand Final match between the Collingwood Magpies and the Brisbane Lions at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on September 30, 2023 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Dylan Burns/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

Sinclair and Daicos provide a similar game as perhaps the two best roaming half-back flankers in the AFL, cutting through opposition with elite ball use and decision-making.

On the other side, Dan Houston can be simply described as a lesser version of James Sicily with a booming kick himself, while Jordan Dawson provides his own elite ball use on the left peg as well as a quality leadership presence.

Overall, Victoria's defensive dominance coupled with the ability to generate offence through Daicos, Sinclair and Sicily probably gives them the nod in the backline.