Rowan Marshall has jumped up a league-high 47 points in the Champion Data ratings, rendering him the most-improved player in the league following Season 2019.
It was the biggest statistical jump recorded from the season just gone, with Richmond’s Bachar Houli (+32) and Carlton’s Nic Newman (+24) the next best achievers.
The Portland product averaged 63 Champion Data points the year prior, before his blistering 2019 form saw him rocket up to 110 points.
After coming off the rookie list last year and missing out on a Round 1 berth, Marshall surged up the ranks to cement himself as St Kilda’s number one ruckman.
He averaged 18 disposals (11 contested), six clearances, four stoppage clearances and three inside-50s per game to rank as elite in all statistics.
Marshall’s mobility, endurance and skill both at ground-level and in the ruck saw the No. 19 become one of the red, white and black’s most important and influential players.
According to the Official AFL Player Ratings, the 24-year-old was ranked the league’s best player since Round 11.
Marshall played 20 games last season to finish second in the 2019 Trevor Barker Award behind stand-in skipper Seb Ross, but he didn’t go home empty-handed.
The star Saint snared the Lenny Hayes Players’ Player Award, the Best Emerging Player Award and the Dare Iced Coffee Sainter of the Year in a near-perfect clean sweep.
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Seven Brownlow votes (third for St Kilda) capped off his terrific year.
Heading into 2020, Marshall is likely to work both deep in attack and in the ruck in tandem with All Australian recruit, Paddy Ryder.
The Saints are currently undertaking a pre-season camp at Barwon Heads, and will return to RSEA Park at the start of next week.
ROWAN MARSHALL’S 2019 AT A GLANCE
Season averages: 29 hitouts, 18 disposals, six clearances
Best game: Round 16 v North Melbourne, 21 disposals, 31 hitouts, eight clearances, one goal
Key stat: First for St Kilda’s contested possessions (227), centre clearances (40) and hitouts (569), second for total clearances (110)
Awards/accolades: Trevor Barker Award runner-up, Lenny Hayes Players’ Player Award, Best Emerging Player Award, Dare Iced Coffee Sainter of the Year, seven Brownlow votes