Tim Sumner article advertiser

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Tim Sumner article advertiser

Post by Mickyj on Wed Nov 07, 2012 7:08 pm

TIM Sumner was playing division five amateur football at Woodville South little more than a year ago.

Today the 18-year-old utility is being touted as an AFL draft prospect.

It follows a rapid rise over the past 12 months, as Sumner joined Woodville-West Torrens's under-18s, earned selection in the SA squad for the national under-18 championships and played two league games with the Eagles.

Eagles under-18 coach and talent manager Shane Grimm said Sumner went from being virtually unknown in the eyes of AFL recruiters to attracting their attention after one trial game.

"After our first under-18 trial against Port Magpies I had four or five recruiters ring me on the Monday asking about him," Grimm said.

"He's got a long kick, can run and carry the ball 40m, kick it 60m.

"By round three or four he was in the state (under-18) squad and there was a fair bit of buzz around him."

Sumner originally knocked back the chance to join the Eagles' under-18s for 2011 in favour of another year of "having fun" and just getting used to "playing against bigger bodies" with Woodville South.

But he realised if he wanted to get drafted he could not knock back the opportunity again the next year.

Sumner started in the Eagles' under-18s, booting eight goals in a match against North Adelaide while battling the flu. By September he made his league debut against Sturt.

"I knew I couldn't stay at Woodville South and had to go to a bigger club," he said.

"It was an unbelievable experience to be able to play league footy at 17."

Sumner's older brother, Byron, has had a significant influence on him since returning to the Eagles.

Byron played one game in two years with the Swans before being delisted at the end of 2011 and has emerged as a chance to be re-drafted after a strong year with the Eagles.

"Playing together this year he's helped me along, kept pushing me to achieve my highest and be the best for my ability," Sumner said.

The brothers will watch the November 22 national draft together - just as they did when Byron was taken by the Swans in 2009 - hoping they both land on AFL lists.

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