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Mark of the Year

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Subject: Warwick Capper, Goal of the Year (AFL), Michael Mitchell (Australian rules footballer), Stephen Silvagni, Nicky Winmar
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Mark of the Year

Official logo for the Mark of the Year competition
An Australian rules football. It must be caught successfully during an AFL match to qualify the mark for the competition.
Gary Moorcroft's famous 2001 mark of the year
Michael Newton's 2007 Mark of the Year
Matthew Lloyd – Holder of the title of the 2008 Season

The annual Australian Football League Mark of the Year competition (currently also known as the Weet Bix AFL Mark of the Year) is a sporting award that celebrates each best mark. A mark is the action of a player cleanly catching a kicked ball that has travelled more than 15 metres (49 ft) without the ball hitting the ground.

Originally known as the "VFL Mark of the Year" and selected by a panel of football experts on Network Seven's World of Sport program, the contest was renamed the "AFL Mark of the Year" following the competition's renaming in 1990. Since 2001 it has been run by the AFL and the winner has been selected by public vote. It is open only to players within the AFL and applies to marks taken during official AFL season matches. Several other Australian rules football leagues followed with their own "Mark of the Year" competitions.

A famous VFL footballer, Alex Jesaulenko, unofficially won the first award for a "spectacular mark" during the 1970 VFL Grand Final, a mark that has been frequently called "The Mark of the Century".

Thirty-two players have won the competition; of those, five have won multiple times and six are still active in the AFL. Peter Knights (Hawthorn) and Tony Modra (Adelaide/Fremantle) have won the most Mark of the Year awards, with three each.

The competition is run in conjunction with the Goal of the Year contest, which recognizes the best particular goal kicked during an AFL season. Two players have managed to win both the "Mark of the Year" and "Goal of the Year" awardss in the same season: Michael Mitchell and Peter Bosustow.


  • Background 1
  • History 2
  • Selection process 3
  • Annual winners 4
  • See also 5
  • References 6


Currently also known by its sponsorship name as the "Weet Bix AFL Mark of the Year",[1][2] the competition is open to players in the AFL (Australian rules football's highest league).[3][4] Winners receive an assortment of prizes, including $5,000 for their grassroots (junior) club, the use of a Toyota Kluger for 12 months and the Alex Jesaulenko Medal.[2][3][5][6]

The current Victorian Football League (formerly known as the Victorian Football Association) runs a similar competition; however, the winners are selected only from the few games that are televised each year on ABC2. Many other amateur Australian rules football leagues also run an equivalent competition, but they often rely on less comprehensive television footage; some amateur leagues rely on spectators who submit photos and amateur video recordings to the league[7] or to television shows such as the AFL Footy Show.[8][9]

Chris Tarrant's mark in Round 11, 2001 has been used as the basis of the silhouette for the Mark of the Year logo, despite its losing the Mark of the Year to Gary Moorcroft's round 14 mark.[2] Many of the best marks in the VFL/AFL were featured in a VHS/DVD named Miracle Marks.[10]


The competition was initiated following Alex Jesaulenko's mark over Graeme "Jerker" Jenkin in the 1970 (Victorian Football League) Grand Final and later recognised officially as the Mark of the Year; the medal awarded to the winner now bears his name.[3][4][11] During the 1970s and early 1980s, the award was decided by a panel of football experts on Network Seven's "World of Sport" program and during the 1980s and 1990s, the winning mark was determined by selected football journalists and experts.[3] With minor modifications, the current selection process was first used in the 1998 season.[7][12] In 1990, the competition (originally known as the VFL Mark of the Year) was renamed the AFL Mark of the Year, following the inception of the AFL.[3][13][14]

Selection process

After each round of the regular AFL season, three "Mark of the Week" nominations are determined by a panel of football experts. The general public can then vote for a weekly winner on the AFL website.[1][6]

After the regular season's end, the title is given to a single mark, which is chosen by the AFL All Australian selection committee; the public is not given a say in the final outcome. The selection committee is not restricted to choosing a winner from the Mark of the Week winners; indeed, in 2010, the two favourites both came in Round 21, and whereas the public voted Brendon Goddard as Mark of the Week, the selection panel named Jurrah as Mark of the Year. The winner is announced during Grand Final week.[6]

Annual winners

AFL Mark of the Year Winners

* Player is still active in the AFL
# Player also won Goal of the year for the same year
^ Player has won Mark of the Year multiple times
Winner Team Match, Round, Note
1970 Jesaulenko, AlexAlex Jesaulenko Carlton Carlton vs Collingwood, Grand Final day, Melbourne Cricket Ground Spectacular mark over Graeme Jenkin during Grand Final day.[5][11][15]
1971 Ruscuklic, AlexAlex Ruscuklic Fitzroy Fitzroy vs Carlton, Round 10, Princes Park "High Flyer" by centre-half forward Alex Ruscuklic.[3]
1972 Knights, PeterPeter Knights^ Hawthorn Hawthorn vs Collingwood, Round 17, Glenferrie Oval Halfback Peter Knights threw a screamer against Collingwood.[3]
1973 Atkinson, AlanAlan Atkinson Collingwood Collingwood vs Hawthorn, Round 21, Waverley Park Atkinson took "Mark of the Year" over Leon Rice on the wing.[3]
1974 Picken, BillyBilly Picken^ Collingwood Collingwood vs Richmond, Round 9, Melbourne Cricket Ground Billy Picken took a screamer during the John Greening comeback game.
1975 Knights, PeterPeter Knights^ Hawthorn Hawthorn vs Carlton, Round 17, Princes Park Juggled mark before Carlton player swung his leg, causing Knights to fall onto his chest.[3]
1976 Picken, BillyBilly Picken^ Collingwood Collingwood vs St. Kilda, Round 16, Victoria Park Overhead mark by Billy Picken against St. Kilda.
1977 Knights, PeterPeter Knights^ Hawthorn Collingwood vs Hawthorn, Round 9, Princes Park Chest mark over the pack.
1978 Baker, PhilPhil Baker North Melbourne Hawthorn vs North Melbourne, Grand Final day, Melbourne Cricket Ground High mark above Hawks defenders Kelvin Moore and Ian Paton in the 1978 Grand final.[16]
1979 Roach, MichaelMichael Roach Richmond Richmond vs Hawthorn, Round 5, Melbourne Cricket Ground Chest mark over Kelvin Moore Terry Moore and Ian Paton.
1980 Teasdale, GrahamGraham Teasdale South Melbourne South Melbourne vs Collingwood, Round 7, Lake Oval[17] Graham Teasdale took a "Marvellous Mark" over Collingwoods Billy Picken.[3]
1981 Bosustow, PeterPeter Bosustow# Carlton Carlton vs Geelong, Round 18, Princes Park Chest mark over the pack.
1982 Raines, GeoffGeoff Raines Richmond Richmond vs Fitzroy, Round 2, Waverley Park Leapt high above his Fitzroy opponent before falling forward with the ball firmly in his grasp.[3][18]
1983 Hunter, KenKen Hunter Carlton Carlton vs Richmond, Round 1, Princes Park Overhead mark ran into a pack.
1984 Banks, DenisDenis Banks Collingwood Footscray vs Collingwood, Round 10, Western Oval Mark ran with the flight of the ball.
1985 Ablett, Sr., GaryGary Ablett, Sr.^ Geelong Geelong vs North Melbourne, Round 5, Kardinia Park Specky over the pack.
1986 Buckenara, GaryGary Buckenara Hawthorn Hawthorn vs Carlton, Round 1, Waverley Park[19] A towering "high flyer" over two Carlton players.[3]
1987 Capper, WarwickWarwick Capper Sydney Sydney vs Hawthorn, Qualifying Final, Waverley Park[20] Used Chris Langford as a stepladder to take the ball while lying on his side.[21]
1988 Silvagni, StephenStephen Silvagni Carlton Collingwood vs Carlton, Round 14, Melbourne Cricket Ground Chest mark with long hangtime over Craig Starcevich.
1989 Lynch, AlastairAlastair Lynch Fitzroy Fitzroy vs North Melbourne, Round 16, Melbourne Cricket Ground Juggling mark over the pack.
1990 Mitchell, MichaelMichael Mitchell# Richmond Richmond vs Fitzroy, Round 5, Melbourne Cricket Ground A juggled mark against his Fitzroy opponent.
1991 Allison, BrettBrett Allison North Melbourne North Melbourne vs Collingwood, Round 11, Melbourne Cricket Ground Specky over Gavin Crosisca.
1992 Winmar, NickyNicky Winmar St Kilda West Coast vs St. Kilda, Round 3, Subiaco Oval A "breathtaking" mark at Subiaco Oval.[22]
1993 Modra, TonyTony Modra^ Adelaide Adelaide vs North Melbourne, Round 8, Football Park Spectacular mark over Ian Fairley and Glenn Archer of North Melbourne. Adelaide came from behind to record a 2-point win.[23]
1994 Ablett, Sr., GaryGary Ablett, Sr.^ Geelong Collingwood vs Geelong, Round 7, Melbourne Cricket Ground Took a magnificent leap, basically sitting in Magpie Gary Pert's arms and took a one-handed juggling mark.[24]
1995 Smith, ShaunShaun Smith Melbourne Brisbane vs Melbourne, Round 22, Brisbane Cricket Ground "High Leap" over teammate Garry Lyon.
1996 Hart, BenBen Hart Adelaide Adelaide vs St. Kilda, Round 8, Football Park Intercepted Peter Everitt's inside 50 entry by jumping and lying on his back 3m into the air, at the Northern End of Football Park against St Kilda.[25]
1997 Modra, TonyTony Modra^ Adelaide Adelaide vs North Melbourne, Round 17, Football Park Against North Melbourne, Modra rode high on Mick Martyn's shoulders facing towards the crowd with the ball coming in from behind. Turned in midair and grabbed the ball.[23]
1998 Abraham, WinstonWinston Abraham North Melbourne North Melbourne vs Port Adelaide, Round 18, Manuka Oval An overhead mark over Port's Brendon Lade.[26]
1999 Lappin, MatthewMatthew Lappin Carlton Carlton vs Essendon, Round 1, Melbourne Cricket Ground A courageous overhead mark over the pack in the opening match of the season over Judd Lalich.[26]
2000 Modra, TonyTony Modra^ Fremantle Fremantle vs Geelong, Round 1, Subiaco Oval From within a pack, Tony Modra rose on the back of his opponent to take a spectacular, from the kick by team mate Ashley Prescott.[26]
2001 Moorcroft, GaryGary Moorcroft Essendon Essendon vs Western Bulldogs, Round 14, Telstra Dome An overhead mark at full stretch after leaping onto and then springing a further metre into the air off Brad Johnson.[27]
2002 Brown, JonathanJonathan Brown Brisbane Hawthorn vs Brisbane, Round 17, Melbourne Cricket Ground A courageous chest mark running with the flight of the ball, launching into the oncoming Jade Rawlings.[28]
2003 Tarrant, ChrisChris Tarrant Collingwood Collingwood vs Geelong, Round 18, Telstra Dome A towering chest mark over Cat defenders Matthew Scarlett and Max Rooke.[29]
2004 Sampi, AshleyAshley Sampi West Coast Eagles West Coast vs Melbourne, Round 7, Melbourne Cricket Ground Rose high with a chest mark over Paul Wheatley and Adem Yze, landing catlike on his feet.[30]
2005 McPharlin, LukeLuke McPharlin Fremantle Fremantle vs West Coast, Round 3, Subiaco Oval A chest mark at knee height on the shoulders of an opponent in a pack of players.
2006 Ottens, BradBrad Ottens Geelong Geelong vs Sydney, Round 5, Telstra Stadium A high flying mark in a pack over Darren Jolly who cushioned Ottens' fall causing additional 'hang-time'.[31]
2007 Newton, MichaelMichael Newton Melbourne Melbourne vs Kangaroos, Round 17, Telstra Dome High leap in Melbourne's forward fifty over David Neitz and Kangaroos defenders Glenn Archer and Leigh Brown.[32]
2008 Lloyd, MatthewMatthew Lloyd Essendon Essendon vs Melbourne, Round 18, Melbourne Cricket Ground A screamer, over a pack of five players late in the third quarter.[33]
2009 Burton, BrettBrett Burton Adelaide Carlton vs Adelaide, Round 22, Etihad Stadium Jumped early on a pack consisting of team mate Kurt Tippett and Carlton's Ruckman Matthew Kreuzer and received an extra lift off of Carlton backman Bret Thornton to take the mark on his chest. Commentator Dwayne Russell dubbed it one of the marks of the century.[34]
2010 Jurrah, LiamLiam Jurrah Melbourne Port Adelaide vs Melbourne, Round 21, AAMI Stadium Huge leap over a contest between Melbourne's Jack Watts and Port Adelaide's Nick Salter.[35]
2011 Krakouer, AndrewAndrew Krakouer Collingwood Collingwood vs Adelaide, Round 9, Etihad Stadium Very high leap on the shoulders of Adelaide's Luke Thompson.[36][37]
2012 Howe, JeremyJeremy Howe* Melbourne Melbourne vs Sydney, Round 8, SCG Huge screamer over Heath Grundy. One of Howe's many high marks throughout the 2012 season. Howe taking a contender for mark of the year was almost a weekly occurrence.[38]
2013 Elliott, JamieJamie Elliott* Collingwood Collingwood v Port Adelaide, Round 14, AAMI Stadium He jumps through a pack of several players to take a spectacular chest mark.[39]
2014 Wingard, ChadChad Wingard* Port Adelaide Port Adelaide vs St Kilda, Round 12, Adelaide Oval Wingard jumps high above Sean Dempster, falling backwards as he takes the mark above his head.[40]
2015 Naitanui, NicNic Naitanui* West Coast West Coast vs Geelong, Round 9, Patersons Stadium Jumped high in a pack with Mark Blicavs, Jared Rivers and teammate Callum Sinclair[41]

See also


  1. ^ a b
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  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l
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  35. ^
  36. ^ Krakouer best in year of the screamer
  37. ^ Substitution rule makes its mark
  38. ^ Howe wins Mark of the Year - Official AFL Website of the Melbourne Football Club
  39. ^
  40. ^
  41. ^ =

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