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Draftee that compared himself to AFL greats “backing himself to be a star”

South Australian draft prospect Mattaes Phillipou turned heads after describing himself as a mix of AFL greats Marcus Bontempelli and Nat Fyfe.

Given the heights that pair have reached, whatever club Phillipou joins will be hoping he turns out to be anything like the duo, and he may just have the skillset to do so.

Described as a big-bodied midfield that can go forward and change games, Phillipou has been ranked at number nine in draft expert Cal Twomey’s phantom form guide on

Kane Cornes is one pundit that’s a fan of Phillipou’s confidence but described the still 17-year-old’s statement as “strong”.

Speaking on SEN Sportsday, Cornes asked Twomey – who has followed Phillipou’s journey – whether the Woodville West Torrens youngster needed to “pull his head in a little bit”.

While Twomey describes Phillipou as one of the more confident players he has encountered, he doesn’t feel his ultra-confidence is considered a negative by clubs.

“He would be right up there for the most confident players I’ve interviewed,” Twomey replied.

“There’s been a few over the last 10 years in covering the draft, he’d be right up there.

“That’s not a front, that’s his natural confidence and self-belief in himself to be really, really good.

“To a fair degree, I think clubs like the fact he’s backing himself into being a star.

“He wants to be great, he doesn’t just want to be a player, he wants to be a really good player and a really good player quickly.

“I don’t think he has to pull his head in, I just think clubs have gotten used to the personality type that he is and what that’s going to mean for his footy club.”

Phillipou looks destined to be the first player drafted from his state when this year’s National Draft takes place on the 28th and 29th of November.

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