The 2019 Coleman Medal race was one to remember.
We could only be so lucky to see a similar race for the leading goalkicker award this season. There are many contenders for the prize with the key forward seemingly back in vogue.
It’s hard not to start with Jeremey Cameron, the 2019 winner was immense in the Giants’ push for a spot in the grand final. Arguably the beneficiary of the league’s best service going forward, Cameron booted 67 goals.
One bag of seven, one of six and the nine booted in round 23 prove Cameron can go big when he is on. The reigning champ has also found more ways to score goals after previously focusing mainly on running back to open goals as his main source. This makes him all the more dangerous and versatile and arguably favourite to go back-to-back.
Ben Brown was stiff if not really stiff to miss out in 2019. 100 goals in round 22 seemed enough to see him win his first Coleman as he took a four-goal lead over Cameron. However, a modest total of two in round 23 to combat the nine of Cameron saw him just miss out. Brown may not be as versatile as many other forwards but is a constant threat in the air and is usually quite accurate in front of goal. He kicked at 66% in front of goal.
Tom Lynch was the boom recruit of 2019, coming into Tigerland on big money and a big reputation. He came in underdone and still managed to kick16 goals in his first four games, while seemingly not close to his best. He hit his straps in the second half of the year and finished with 54 goals for the season.
Finals were where we saw the best of Lynch, who booted nine goals in three finals. A full pre-season under his belt and even more time with his teammates make him a clear contender for the 2020 Coleman Medal. If you’d like to put your money where your mouth is and weigh in on your pick for the Coleman Medal winner of 2020, check out this list of the best Aussie bookies to trust with your bets.
The small forwards rarely figure in this award, let alone finish equal third. Charlie Cameron was outstanding last year managing to equal Tom Lynch with 54 goals in a position that is widely seen as the hardest on the ground to play. Cameron goals are largely self- created as he is usually waiting for a crumb or loose ball as opposed to a pack mark. Brisbane did tend to look for Cameron inside 50 more than most other small forwards are used which keeps him in the discussion.
Josh Kennedy has had his hands on this award twice before but not since 2016. The Eagles big man is notoriously accurate and is hard to stop when on a roll. Kennedy has faced a number of injury woes recently which has hampered his pursuit of a third Coleman, but at his best is as good a pure full forward the competition has. The question is mainly over whether Kennedy has 22 games in him and if he still has the goal-kicking ability that saw him claim back-to-back Colemans.
Jack Riewoldt has become one of the most unselfish forwards in the competition and enhanced that reputation in 2019. Jumpin’ Jack still has an incredible goal sense, is an elite mark of the ball and as safe as they came when one-on-one with almost any defender.
There isn’t a better set shot in the competition, so he gets value for shots. However, Richmond’s game plan is not one that sees Jack kick enough goals to win the medal, let-alone when competing with Tom Lynch there maybe aren’t enough goals to go around.